Liverpool winger Stewart Downing hopes he has given manager Brendan Rodgers "food for thought" ahead of this weekend's Merseyside derby after scoring the winner in the 1-0 Europa League victory over Anzhi Makhachkala on Thursday night.

Downing, who had been shifted from the wing to full-back for the second half, cut in from the left flank in the 53rd minute and fired an unstoppable shot into the net from outside the area.

It was just the fourth goal of what has been a generally frustrating period for the 28-year-old England international following his move from Aston Villa in 2011, but he told the Liverpool Echo: "It was satisfying to get the goal but the win was the most important thing. The only way you can prove yourself to the manager is out on the field. All I can do is score goals and try to play well."

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