Brendan Rodgers insists Liverpool have the right mental attitude

Rodgers rejects the suggestion that the Reds' miss an enforcer

Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers insists his players do not lack the heart or the mind to win big games.

And he rejects the suggestion that for all the Reds' possession-style football, they miss an enforcer, someone who can provide some competitive bite when the going gets tough.

After yesterday's 2-1 defeat against Manchester United at Old Trafford, Rodgers accepted his side had been tentative in a woeful first-half performance.

Despite an improved display after the break, sparked mainly by the insertion of £12million striker Daniel Sturridge, they slipped to a seventh league defeat of the season.

"Aggression isn't about having a 6ft 3ins player in the middle of the field who is going to drive you forward, aggression is in the mind," said Rodgers.

"We have Steven Gerrard, who is one of the best examples of that in this country over the last 10 years.

"We have that aggression but it is not about what size you are, it is about the fight which is in there.

"In the second half the ability to fight was much better and we were much more aggressive in our play and attitude and we should have got something."

After another near-miss, the fact remains Rodgers' side have yet to beat any team currently in the top 10 in the league this season.

Their only victories have only come against Norwich, Reading, Wigan, Southampton, West Ham, Fulham, QPR and Sunderland.

The Reds boss is adamant there is no mental barrier for his players and believes one significant result will provide the breakthrough.

"It is not a problem. We should have beaten Manchester City earlier this season, we should have beaten Everton away and we haven't," he said.

"We have been close in a number of the games against the guys at the top end of the league but that is the next step for us.

"To win those games can set your journey off in a totally different direction.

"It is not something which is mental but it is something we need to do if we are going to progress.

"We have great hope in the future, because of how we are working, that will happen here.

"It will be a long journey for us but it is about closing the gap in the squad, getting those wins against our rivals and then we can gain confidence from that.

"I feel we are a match for any of the teams in this league but what allows you to close the gap in terms of the points is having a squad which allows you to compete.

"For us the squad has been very thin in these opening months."

The signing of Sturridge already looks to have filled an important hole as two goals in his first two matches have given a glimpse of what he can provide.

Forward Fabio Borini is also fit again after three months out with a broken foot and, from having only Luis Suarez as his only fit senior striker for most of the season, Rodgers now has options up front.

"Daniel gave us a different dimension with real pace, playing on the shoulder, and every time he is on the box you sense he can get a goal," he said.

"Good players enjoy playing with each other and I think everyone recognises that, at 23, he has his best years ahead of him.

"You see him like he was against United and he is not even fully fit yet.

"He will be a real handful and, going forward he and some of the other players can be the real difference for us.

"It is important you have balance and for me that is the challenge, I want to have good players at the club and we will keep building our squad so we have that.

"But the players we are bringing in are flexible and can play in a couple of positions.

"Fabio can play off the middle and the side, we have seen Suarez playing central all season but for most of his career he's come off the side and the same with Daniel.

"It is about getting good players onto the field who can fit into the structure.

"We needed goalscorers in the club and with the players we have got we can now do that."

PA

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Sport
Laura Trott with her gold
Commonwealth Games
Arts and Entertainment
Gal Gadot as Wonder Woman
film
News
Bryan had a bracelet given to him by his late father stolen during the raid
people
Sport
France striker Loic Remy
sportThe QPR striker flew to Boston earlier in the week to complete deal
Extras
indybestSpice up your knife with our selection of delicious toppings
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

A new Russian revolution: Cracks start to appear in Putin’s Kremlin power bloc

A new Russian revolution

Cracks start to appear in Putin’s Kremlin power bloc
Eugene de Kock: Apartheid’s sadistic killer that his country cannot forgive

Apartheid’s sadistic killer that his country cannot forgive

The debate rages in South Africa over whether Eugene de Kock should ever be released from jail
Standing my ground: If sitting is bad for your health, what happens when you stay on your feet for a whole month?

Standing my ground

If sitting is bad for your health, what happens when you stay on your feet for a whole month?
Commonwealth Games 2014: Dai Greene prays for chance to rebuild after injury agony

Greene prays for chance to rebuild after injury agony

Welsh hurdler was World, European and Commonwealth champion, but then the injuries crept in
Israel-Gaza conflict: Secret report helps Israelis to hide facts

Patrick Cockburn: Secret report helps Israel to hide facts

The slickness of Israel's spokesmen is rooted in directions set down by pollster Frank Luntz
The man who dared to go on holiday

The man who dared to go on holiday

New York's mayor has taken a vacation - in a nation that has still to enforce paid leave, it caused quite a stir, reports Rupert Cornwell
Best comedians: How the professionals go about their funny business, from Sarah Millican to Marcus Brigstocke

Best comedians: How the professionals go about their funny business

For all those wanting to know how stand-ups keep standing, here are some of the best moments
The Guest List 2014: Forget the Man Booker longlist, Literary Editor Katy Guest offers her alternative picks

The Guest List 2014

Forget the Man Booker longlist, Literary Editor Katy Guest offers her alternative picks
Jokes on Hollywood: 'With comedy film audiences shrinking, it’s time to move on'

Jokes on Hollywood

With comedy film audiences shrinking, it’s time to move on
It's the best of British art... but not all is on display

It's the best of British art... but not all is on display

Voted for by the British public, the artworks on Art Everywhere posters may be the only place where they can be seen
Critic claims 'I was the inspiration for Blanche DuBois'

Critic claims 'I was the inspiration for Blanche DuBois'

Blanche Marvin reveals how Tennessee Williams used her name and an off-the-cuff remark to create an iconic character
Sometimes it's hard to be a literary novelist

Sometimes it's hard to be a literary novelist

Websites offering your ebooks for nothing is only the latest disrespect the modern writer is subjected to, says DJ Taylor
Edinburgh Fringe 2014: The comedy highlights, from Bridget Christie to Jack Dee

Edinburgh Fringe 2014

The comedy highlights, from Bridget Christie to Jack Dee
Dame Jenny Abramsky: 'We have to rethink. If not, museums and parks will close'

Dame Jenny Abramsky: 'We have to rethink. If not, museums and parks will close'

The woman stepping down as chair of the Heritage Lottery Fund is worried