Liverpool ‘moving in the right direction’, claims Rodgers

first_imgLiverpool Brendan Rodgers was delighted with his side following their battling 2-2 draw with Arsenal, insisting the Reds are moving in the right direction.The Merseyside outfit have slipped from last season’s Premier League runner-up spot to suffering their worst start to a season in 50 years after last weekend’s 3-0 defeat at Manchester United.They looked much improved against the Gunners at Anfield on Sunday, dominating the opening exchanges and taking the lead through lively playmaker Philippe Coutinho.But familiar defensive mistakes cost Liverpool what would have been a deserved three points against a below-par Arsenal, Mathieu Debuchy equalising against the run of play seconds later and Olivier Giroud putting the north London side in front after the break.After a host of late chances Martin Skrtel eventually emerged as the Reds’ saviour, the heavily bandaged centre-back powering in an injury-time header to seal a point.His team’s errors were frustrating, but overall Rodgers believed their display was an improvement over last season’s emphatic 5-1 victory over the Gunners.“We’re slowly getting back to where we want to be,” said the boss.“Our performance today was outstanding. The passing, the intensity and, importantly for us, the pressing in our game is starting to return.“Sure, we’re disappointed with the goals we conceded, but the character and the quality today was very good and I think we played better and dominated more than when we won 5-1 last year, so I think that tells you everything about the performance.“We thoroughly deserved to be at least one up after the first half, but we made bad decisions defensively.”Even though the 41-year-old felt Alexis Sanchez dived to secure the free-kick that led to Debuchy’s leveller, he pointed out that the Reds’ failure to clear the Chilean’s resulting set piece on three occasions was simply not good enough.Rodgers added: “I don’t think it was a free-kick, I think Sanchez dived when he realised he wasn’t getting the ball and the referee fell for it.“But when the free-kick comes in we lost three headers, so we’ve got to be better in the box. It’s not about organisation it’s about winning the duel, so from being 1-0 up and totally dominating we found ourselves 1-1 at half-time.“We showed immense character in the second-half to continue with our football, we had 27 efforts on goal.“The speed of the team is starting to return, the movement, the passing was short and crisp and to restrict Arsenal to so few shots was impressive.“For me that’s the key, we’re moving in the right direction and we’ve had just one defeat in eight games.”last_img