Will Liverpool secure top-four Premier League finish? Thiago Alcantara staying positive in ‘new era’ for Reds
- Reds made slow start to the season
- Out of the Carabao Cup
- Ready to resume top-flight campaign
WHAT HAPPENED? Jurgen Klopp saw his side make an inconsistent start to their current Premier League campaign, with early struggles leaving them 15 points off leaders Arsenal heading into the World Cup break. Shoots of recovery were seen prior to domestic football shutting down, with Liverpool back up to sixth in the table, and Thiago believes those occupying the Champions League qualification spots can be chased down.
WHAT THEY SAID: Thiago told reporters after seeing Liverpool’s defence of their Carabao Cup crown come to an end in a 3-2 defeat at Manchester City: “Can we make the top four? For sure, we are confident to arrive as far as we can in all competitions. For sure, the break will benefit us. It's new air in our lungs so yeah. I think the players that came from the World Cup will be a bit tired but at the same time they have more rhythm. But I think it's a new era, a new moment for all of us. It never happened that the World Cup was in the middle of the season, we just have to learn and improve with that.
“For sure, we all want to be better than the first half of the season, we work for it. I think today we did a high performance - physically as well. We're just ready for the next part of the season. It was a World Cup in December, so it's tricky to say what happened in the first half of the season. We just want to do it better and we will.”
THE BIGGER PICTURE: Liverpool have already suffered four defeats in 14 Premier League games this season, with just 22 points taken from a possible 42, but they are through to the last-16 of the Champions League – where they will face Real Madrid – and have another FA Cup campaign to open when taking on Wolves in the third round of that competition.
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WHAT NEXT? Prior to those outings, Liverpool will be back in top-flight action on Boxing Day when heading to Aston Villa – with Klopp hoping that a few of those unavailable to him against City will come back into contention for that contest.