Liverpool started slowly in their last match against Leicester. They aren’t likely to make the same mistake twice.
Arsene Wenger and the players know what to expect when we head to Anfield on Saturday and here’s the manager’s take on the biggest game of the weekend:
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on the nature of games at Anfield…It’s always high intensity, very competitive. Anfield is a special place where the fans are behind their team, where their team plays at a good pace. For us, after a little break, it’s important to switch on quickly. We have seen that’s not easy - Liverpool showed that against Leicester. After a break, it’s important that you are ready from the start again. You lose a little bit the rhythm of the competition and for us it’s vital to start strongly at Liverpool.
on if we are out of the title race…We have to focus on our next game. We have a game in hand, things can change quickly. To do a thing like that, you need exceptional rhythm in your results and as well Chelsea to fade. At the moment I think it’s more important that we focus on winning our games and focus on our next game rather than dreaming about coming back to Chelsea.
on how big a psychological benefit it could be to win away to a top side…Yes, I agree with you that it is even more important because we have not done well recently in these kind of games. For us, this kind of game at Liverpool is of course an opportunity that we want to take. We have to go and take it and not wait for the result. The result comes with a ‘taking attitude’ and that for me is the most important, that we go to just start on a positive attitude. As for the consequences for the rest of the season, of course it will have vital consequences.
on what he’s done to address any mental problem after the Bayern game…When you have a bad result like that, of course it plays on your mind. But I just think you have to focus on the way we want to play and on the desire to win, to fight and to take the opportunity you have to show your quality. After that, the recent history being negative, that doesn’t help. But you have to be strong enough to deal with that.
on whether he’s set a points target…I don’t know, we’ll see. Things can change very quickly at the end of the season with many big teams playing against each other. It’s very difficult to predict how many points will be needed [for a top-two finish] at the moment. We are in the mode now where we want to win our next game.
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