Dalglish focused despite off-field issues

 

Liverpool manager Kenny Dalglish insists his side will not be distracted by off-field issues this week.

And he is certain they will need no extra motivation as they look to bounce back from their first defeat since mid-September at home to QPR tomorrow.

The Reds' 11-match unbeaten run was ended in controversial circumstances at Fulham on Monday as Jay Spearing was sent off and then, after the match, Luis Suarez was pictured allegedly making an offensive gesture to the crowd.

Those incidents resulted in two Football Association charges arriving at the Melwood training ground a couple of days later, one for the club for failing to control their players in the wake of the red card and the other for Suarez for his apparent misconduct.

All in all it has not been a good week for Liverpool but Dalglish said it was business as usual for him and the players in terms of the approaching game.

"It (the furore at Craven Cottage) has only distracted me because I've got to answer questions about it," said the Scot.

"It is a distraction which has to be covered but it should never take precedence over what we are trying to do on the pitch and the training ground.

"We will do what we always do and that is our best as well as we can and see if we can get a bit of luck going our way."

And despite suffering a third Barclays Premier League loss - all of which have come away from home - Dalglish does not believe it will have a detrimental effect on morale.

"I think it is worse to pick them up when they are rubbish and you can never accuse them of that," added the Scot.

"Defeat is never pleasant but we set our standards higher than that so it won't be difficult to pick them up.

"The only reason you wouldn't back your players was if they were continually producing performances like the one at Tottenham (a 4-0 defeat, which was the last time they were beaten prior to Monday).

"They haven't done that. This season they could have won every game they played in apart from Tottenham so I don't see why we have to be disappointed.

"We are only disappointed for the players that they haven't got what they deserved in terms of points and goals.

"The performance against Fulham was good enough to have won the game.

"We were on a great run. We didn't over-react when we were on a good run so we're not going to over-react when we lose a game."

Dalglish will hope when the Reds return to Anfield tomorrow that normal service is not resumed.

Their last four outings at home have all ended in draws and although they have not been beaten at Anfield this season, two wins and five draws with nine goals scored does not make for happy reading.

In that run of draws, two have been against Manchester City and Manchester United but two more came against newcomers Norwich and Swansea.

With a third promoted side in QPR arriving the Liverpool manager will be targeting a return to winning ways.

Dalglish, however, does not believe some of his players, a number of whom arrived in the summer, find the expectation of playing at home a burden.

"We think playing at Anfield is a fantastic place, though some people (opponents) might come and find it intimidating," he added.

"The thing everyone has to remember is when we play at Anfield they (the fans) are on our side.

"It's up to us to put the chances (we create) away.

"I think the three (promoted) sides have done very well.

"QPR played well against Man City at Loftus Road and were unlucky not to win so if they can do well against the team at the top of the league I'm sure they will be looking to do well when they come here.

"All we can do is compete against them as best as we possibly can."

Liverpool have confirmed midfielder Lucas Leiva has successfully undergone surgery on the anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee which he injured last week at Chelsea.

The operation took place in Sao Paulo and the Brazil midfielder, who has been ruled out for the rest of the season, hopes to leave hospital later today.

"LFC medical staff were present during the procedure," said a club statement.

"Lucas will now begin an agreed rehabilitation programme which will be overseen by the club's medical team."

Late last night the 24-year-old wrote on Twitter: "Busy day doing treatment, hopefully tomorrow I leave the hospital."

PA

Arts and Entertainment
Attenborough with the primates
tvWhy BBC producers didn't want to broadcast Sir David Attenborough's famed Rwandan encounter
News
people
News
Campbell: ‘Sometimes you have to be economical with the truth’
newsFormer spin doctor says MPs should study tactics of leading sports figures like José Mourinho
News
news
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Voices
Lance Corporal Joshua Leakey VC
voicesBeware of imitations, but the words of the soldier awarded the Victoria Cross were the real thing, says DJ Taylor
Life and Style
Alexander McQueen's AW 2009/10 collection during Paris Fashion Week
fashionMeet the collaborators who helped create the late designer’s notorious spectacles
Sport
football
News
i100
News
Perry says: 'Psychiatrists give help because they need help. You would not be working in mental health if you didn't have a curiosity about how the mind works.'
people
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

War with Isis: Fears that the looming battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

The battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

Aid agencies prepare for vast exodus following planned Iraqi offensive against the Isis-held city, reports Patrick Cockburn
Yvette Cooper: We can't lose the election. There's too much on the line

Yvette Cooper: We can't lose the election. There's too much on the line

The shadow Home Secretary on fighting radical Islam, protecting children, and why anyone in Labour who's thinking beyond May must 'sort themselves out'
A bad week for the Greens: Leader Natalie Bennett's 'car crash' radio interview is followed by Brighton council's failure to set a budget due to infighting

It's not easy being Green

After a bad week in which its leader had a public meltdown and its only city council couldn't agree on a budget vote, what next for the alternative party? It's over to Caroline Lucas to find out
Gorillas nearly missed: BBC producers didn't want to broadcast Sir David Attenborough's famed Rwandan encounter

Gorillas nearly missed

BBC producers didn't want to broadcast Sir David Attenborough's famed Rwandan encounter
Downton Abbey effect sees impoverished Italian nobles inspired to open their doors to paying guests for up to €650 a night

The Downton Abbey effect

Impoverished Italian nobles are opening their doors to paying guests, inspired by the TV drama
China's wild panda numbers have increased by 17% since 2003, new census reveals

China's wild panda numbers on the up

New census reveals 17% since 2003
Barbara Woodward: Britain's first female ambassador to China intends to forge strong links with the growing economic superpower

Our woman in Beijing builds a new relationship

Britain's first female ambassador to China intends to forge strong links with growing economic power
Courage is rare. True humility is even rarer. But the only British soldier to be awarded the Victoria Cross in Afghanistan has both

Courage is rare. True humility is even rarer

Beware of imitations, but the words of the soldier awarded the Victoria Cross were the real thing, says DJ Taylor
Alexander McQueen: The catwalk was a stage for the designer's astonishing and troubling vision

Alexander McQueen's astonishing vision

Ahead of a major retrospective, Alexander Fury talks to the collaborators who helped create the late designer's notorious spectacle
New BBC series savours half a century of food in Britain, from Vesta curries to nouvelle cuisine

Dinner through the decades

A new BBC series challenged Brandon Robshaw and his family to eat their way from the 1950s to the 1990s
Philippa Perry interview: The psychotherapist on McDonald's, fancy specs and meeting Grayson Perry on an evening course

Philippa Perry interview

The psychotherapist on McDonald's, fancy specs and meeting Grayson Perry on an evening course
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef recreates the exoticism of the Indonesian stir-fry

Bill Granger's Indonesian stir-fry recipes

Our chef was inspired by the south-east Asian cuisine he encountered as a teenager
Chelsea vs Tottenham: Harry Kane was at Wembley to see Spurs beat the Blues and win the Capital One Cup - now he's their great hope

Harry Kane interview

The striker was at Wembley to see Spurs beat the Blues and win the Capital One Cup - now he's their great hope
The Last Word: For the good of the game: why on earth don’t we leave Fifa?

Michael Calvin's Last Word

For the good of the game: why on earth don’t we leave Fifa?
HIV pill: Scientists hail discovery of 'game-changer' that cuts the risk of infection among gay men by 86%

Scientists hail daily pill that protects against HIV infection

Breakthrough in battle against global scourge – but will the NHS pay for it?