Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard has urged fans to remain calm following Sunday’s 2-1 defeat to Manchester United at Anfield.

The Reds, reduced to ten-men in the first-half following Jonjo Shelvey’s controversial dismissal, controlled possession for large spells and went ahead through Gerrard’s smart turn-and-shot from inside the box.

However, goals from Rafael and Robin Van Persie meant the points went back to Old Trafford, leaving the skipper disappointed but philosophical following a third loss of the season.

"We are not going to use any excuses; we know how many points we've got on the board and it's not good enough. A club like Liverpool, especially at home, should be looking to take maximum points off those sides – it doesn't matter how good they are,” said the England international post-match.

"But it is no time to panic. The fans can see what the manager is trying to do and they can see what the players are trying to do because they are educated supporters. We know if we keep applying that kind of effort and determination it will only be a matter of time before we go on a winning sequence. Not many sides will be able to live with us because we played some good stuff."

Gerrard was particularly disappointed to lose on a poignant day for Liverpool, with Brendan Rodgers’ side playing their first home game since the publication of the Hillsborough report, which cleared all fans of any wrong-doing when 96 innocent people lost their lives.

Jon-Paul Gilhooley, the youngest person to lose their life in the disaster, was Gerrard’s 10-year-old cousin, and winning the game would have had special significance for the 32-year-old.

"Playing against Manchester United and trying to get three points means a lot to me. But, because of the occasion and the timing, of course I'd have loved nothing better to get three points and dedicate it to all the families,” added Gerrard.

"So there is an extra disappointment but I thought both sets of fans behaved really well, which was important. Although we got beat I feel slightly different to usual because I am really pleased with how we played and we will win a lot of matches playing worse than that, so that is the positive we will take away."

Liverpool’s next match in the Premier League is against Norwich City, with Gerrard’s side travelling to Carrow Road on Saturday.

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