Houllier backs Hodgson to improve Liverpool

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Former Liverpool manager Gerard Houllier insists current boss Roy Hodgson has the backing of the Reds players.

Liverpool suffered a shock Carling Cup exit at the hands of Northampton after extra-time at Anfield in midweek.

Houllier suffered a similar setback during his time at Liverpool against Grimsby - but he has confidence in Houllier's ability to revive fortunes on Merseyside.

Houllier, now in charge of Aston Villa, said: "It (the Northampton defeat) was a disaster. I lost against Grimsby myself. For Roy the next game is the most important.

"Forget about the past. You know when you play a European game or a cup game, sometimes you prioritise - which he did.

"We did as well against Blackburn in the Carling. He will be all right. The boys like him. They will play for him."