Brendan Rodgers has urged Liverpool to win against Hull City on Tuesday night and keep pressure on Manchester United for fourth-place in the Premier League.
The Reds drew 0-0 with West Bromwich Albion last Saturday, however Everton's 3-0 thrashing of Louis van Gaal's men has left the five-time European Cup winners with a slim chance of sneaking into the top-four.
Closing the gap
Rodgers' side currently trail their north west rivals by seven points, but a win at the KC Stadium against Hull would see that gap close to just four points.
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United still have a tricky tie against top-four rivals Arsenal to come in May and Rodgers believes that a win for his side in Yorkshire would put significant pressure on the Red Devils to maintain the final Champions League spot in the Premier League.
“If we can win our games then that will automatically put pressure on the teams above us,” the 42-year-old told the Liverpool Echo.
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“Manchester United have a clear advantage but we can only affect that by winning our games.
“We need to do that starting at Hull. Man United play West Brom at the weekend and we’ve seen how difficult it is to play against Tony Pulis’ team.
“We can only focus on ourselves. Last year showed that lots of changes can take place in the final five matches. We have to be prepared to give everything to finish as high as we can.
“We have a tough game away at Hull who had a good win at the weekend, but for us the idea is to go in and get the victory and apply as much pressure as we can to the teams above.”
Despite Rodgers' best hopes, it would be a miracle if Liverpool were to finish in the top-four this season.
The Reds still have a tricky run-in until the end of the season as they travel to Chelsea on May 2 and Jose Mourinho will be on the hunt to once against outfox Rodgers. Mourinho has a strong history with Liverpool and there's no doubt that Luis Garcia's goal that knocked the Blues out of the Champions League in 2005 still haunts him to this day.
The Merseyside club too have to travel to Stoke City on the final day of the campaign and the Britannia Stadium has not been kind to Liverpool in recent years.
Recent performances have not suggested that Liverpool are a Champions League-worthy side, having won just one of their last five matches. Progress has halted at Anfield and their effort against West Brom last weekend suggested that most players have one eye on their holiday to Barbados in June.
Liverpool went on an unbelievable 13 game winning streak in the Premier League after losing 3-0 to Manchester United last December and it looked as if they would secure a top-four finish.
However, back-to-back losses to United and Arsenal soon derailed that progress and now it looks as if Rodgers men will be competing in the Europa League next term.
Thursday and Sunday football is what no Kopite wants. It is a gruelling process and one can use the impact it had on Everton this campaign as evidence of how it can cause struggles in the early stages of the season. It too means that Liverpool will significantly lose out on a large financial income from the Champions League as well as making it difficult to attract the world's top players.
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