Defender Martin Skrtel believes Liverpool can still reel in the Barclays Premier League's top three with a long winning run.
The Reds have won three and drawn one - where they were denied by a last-minute Stoke equaliser - of their last four matches and that has taken them to within a point of fourth-placed Tottenham.
Leaders Manchester United may be 13 points ahead but Skrtel said fourth place was the very least they were expecting from what has been a disappointing season so far.
"In the Premier League we want to finish fourth in the worst case," said the Slovakia international, who thinks the club's FA Cup third-round exit to Reading will actually help.
"Unlike our rivals we will be playing fewer games, so we should be more relaxed and have more energy.
"I believe we will reach our objective of finishing within the top four.
"Also, we are still in the Europa League and will be trying to get as far as possible."
Skrtel told the Liverpool Echo: "I firmly believe that better times are ahead of us as up to present we have been far behind the pre-season objectives.
"The last two games against Stoke and Tottenham showed us that we are ready to do our best for the club. We would like to start a long winning run."Reuse content