Brendan Rodgers hails ‘outstanding’ Liverpool after drab draw

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London | Updated: Apr 26, 2015 10:46 AM

Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers described his side as "outstanding" despite a goalless draw away to West Bromwich Albion...

Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers described his side as “outstanding” despite a goalless draw away to West Bromwich Albion on Saturday which dents their hopes of a top-four Premier League finish.

“I thought the players were outstanding, their courage and play on the ball. Across the team there were some outstanding performances,” Rodgers told the BBC.

There were few goalscoring chances in a match that only came alive in the second half, with Jordon Ibe hitting the post for Liverpool and James Morrison seeing a header cleared off the line for the hosts.

Liverpool’s season now looks to be heading towards a disappointing conclusion with defeat to Aston Villa in the semi-final of the FA Cup last weekend at Wembley ending their hopes of winning silverware this season.

The FA Cup defeat ensured Rodgers became the first Liverpool manager since the 1950s not to win a trophy in his first three seasons in charge.

Three points at the Hawthorns — on Steven Gerrard’s 500th league appearance for the club — would certainly have boosted hopes of a top-four finish.

Rodgers’s side are fifth, six points behind Manchester City, with Manuel Pellegrini’s team hosting Aston Villa in Saturday’s evening kickoff.

The Reds do have a midweek game in hand at relegation threatened Hull City, and Rodgers has insisted he has not given up hope of reaching the Champions League spots.

The Northern Irishman, however, said it will be “very difficult” to make the top four at the season’s close.

“I felt that of the six games we needed to win five at least. We have now got five to go and we’ll have to look to win them to give ourselves a chance,” he told reporters.

“You never know what happens above you, that’s the thing with football — you just never know. But what you have to do is make sure that you keep the pressure on.

“We have to rely on other teams, but we can only do our job and that is still the plan.”

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