Steven Gerrard in optimistic mood over Liverpool's future ahead of Everton clash
The Merseyside derby takes place this Sunday
Friday 03 May 2013
Everton may be ahead in the league table but Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard insists the bigger picture points to a brighter Reds future.
The two teams meet in the 220th Merseyside derby on Sunday and a first win at Anfield since 1999 would guarantee the Toffees finish above their near-neighbours this term.
Gerrard suggests, however, that while Everton are close to achieving their aim this season Liverpool are a long way from theirs.
"Yes, Everton have been consistent, but they are still only sixth," said the midfielder.
"They have had a good season but maybe their targets were slightly different to others around them in the table.
"For real consistency, the example has to be Manchester United. Not Everton.
"Liverpool, though, is my main concern. Our target at the start of the season was the top four so it's clear our consistency hasn't been good enough.
"I'm not really a stats man, I prefer to look at the bigger picture, but if you look at our amount of goals and clean sheets, it's clear we are moving in the right direction.
"It's not all gloom and doom. We've played some fantastic stuff this season, and besides a handful of games we've always been in with a shout."
Gerrard believes the January arrivals of striker Daniel Sturridge from Chelsea and Philippe Coutinho from Inter Milan significantly impacted the team, which up to that point had been heavily reliant on Luis Suarez's goals.
"I don't really like jumping ahead but for me there's a lot of optimism," he told the Liverpool Daily Post.
"When you make signings you need to contribute. If they are attacking players, you need them to score and set up goals and be better than we already have.
"Sturridge and Coutinho are both signings for the starting XI, and they can both be even better next season.
"I'm convinced they will be two big players for us.
"And if you add another striker to that and you have Luis coming back (from a 10-match ban), then that's the firepower we need to be challenging nearer to the top four.
"In fact, if we had got in Sturridge and Coutinho at the start of the season then I think we'd have been right up there among the top four."
Latest in Sport
Arsenal transfer news: Gunners given boost in hunt for Marco Reus, why Wenger signed Gabriel Paulista, no move for Cheick Tiote
Chelsea injury news: Cesc Fabregas and Branislav Ivanovic could join Diego Costa on the sidelines for crucial Manchester City clash
Australian Open 2015: Thanks to Amelie Mauresmo, it's no longer Andy Murray against the world
Fantasy Premier League: Invest in Arsenal to climb the ranks in Gameweek 23
Manchester United sign former Manchester City prospect Sadiq El Fitouri on advice from Phil Neville and Paul Scholes
- 1 Venezuela Expo Tattoo 2015: Extreme body art from 'Vampire Woman' to 109mm earlobes
- 3 Ball pool for adults opens in London
- 4 Amal Clooney gives excellent response to fashion question at European Court of Human Rights
- 5 Canadian woman suing police who locked her in van with sex offender who then raped her
9 reasons Greece's experiment with the radical left is doomed to failure
Have we reached 'peak food'? Shortages loom as global production rates slow
Greece elections: Syriza and EU on collision course after election win for left-wing party
British grandmother Lindsay Sandiford faces execution by firing squad in Indonesia
Liberal Democrat minister defends comments suggesting immigration causes pub closures
King Abdullah dead: We can't afford not to hold Saudi Arabia's royals to account