Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers insisted it was disrespectful to suggest his selection policy was wrong as the Reds went down 1-0 to Anzhi Makhachkala in the Europa League in Moscow.
Liverpool, who left the likes of Steven Gerrard and Luis Suarez at home, lost to Lacina Traore's goal seconds before half-time in Group A.
But Rodgers felt the team, which contained nine Englishmen, a debutant in Conor Coady and had an average age of just under 24, had performed well, saying: "Not at all. I think that is a little disrespectful to the players who are here. They have been magnificent and I thought they did really well and we just got punished for a mistake."
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