Steven Gerrard believes that Liverpool are not guaranteed a top four finish in the Premier League this season, despite their excellent run of form.
The Reds have been superb in recent weeks with wins against Southampton, Manchester City and Burnley and have surged into fifth in the top flight, just two points behind fourth-placed Manchester United.
United vs Liverpool
Unbeaten in the league in 2015, the Merseyside outfit are now in contention to qualify for the Champions League for a second successive season. With a highly anticipated clash against the Red Devils on March 22, Brendan Rodgers' men could leapfrog their north west rivals into the top-four with a win.
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However, Gerrard still knows there is still plenty of work to be done from now until the end of the campaign and is taking nothing for granted.
"Winning our last four league games has certainly improved our chances of finishing in the top four," the 34-year-old said according to Liverpoolfc.com.
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"At the same time we know our recent good run has guaranteed absolutely nothing.
"After our up-and-down start to the season, all it's done is get us in contention for a Champions League spot. Plenty of other teams are fighting for the same objective.
"None of them are going to make it easy for us, so we have to keep picking up points. There are still a lot of games to be played and we haven't achieved anything yet.
"In recent weeks the manager has had to utilise all of the squad and each player who has got on the pitch has taken their chance by performing well.
"I've said previously that choosing the starting XI should never be an easy task for the boss and when everyone is available that will certainly be the case."
The battle for a top-four finish this season is as competitive as it has been in recent years. Just three points separate Liverpool and Arsenal, who lie in third place, and there is a very good chance that the Merseyside club could finish in a better position than expected.
However, Tottenham Hotspur are hot on the Reds' tails in sixth place with just one point separating the pair. After a miserable start to the season, taking just 14 points from their first ten top flight games, Liverpool are beginning to find top gear.
Their recent performances against City and Burnley were of the top level, with Philippe Coutinho and Jordan Henderson showing their class in big games.
Gerrard not guaranteed place
Gerrard has been missing over the past few weeks with injury and is nearing full-fitness. The Liverpool skipper has been world class throughout his career, winning his side countless games including the Champions League final in 2005 and the FA Cup final in 2006. However he is approaching his 35th birthday and has become less influential during matches.
This season, Rodgers has varied where Gerrard has played and arguably still does not know how to utilise him correctly. Prior to his injury, the Kop legend was playing just behind the striker and didn't do too badly.
However the return of Daniel Sturridge has seen Raheem Sterling abandon his forward role and drop deeper. Likewise, Adam Lallana has also come back from the side-lines and impressed in the role Gerrard was occupying.
The Reds have been playing their best football all season without their skipper. Henderson has taken responsibility and overall there has been more fluency. As a result it could be difficult for Gerrard to force himself back into the starting line-up.
Liverpool fans, should Gerrard get back into the side? Let us know your thoughts in the comments box below...
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