Rodgers Lauds Liverpool's Brilliant Performance in "Big, Big Win"

ARE WE NOT GALVANISED??? - Laurence Griffiths

Things have been a little tense of late, but Brendan Rodgers tactical tinkering against Everton brought feelings of relief as his team turned in a quality performance against their local rivals.

January has been a tough month for Liverpool supporters, which seems moderately absurd on paper given that the club remain unbeaten in 2014 and have won five of six matches in all competitions. But injuries have taken their toll, lack of movement in the transfer market has stagnated, and there are one or two tactical choices made by the manager that have tested the resolve of even the steeliest of supporters.

Which is why, at least temporarily, Everything Is The Best. A dominant performance in not only a must win game but the most important Merseyside derby in years has put a huge gust of wind back in Liverpool's sails at a time when fans have felt very much in the doldrums.

"I know that feelings run high here on Merseyside for the derby games," Rodgers said in his post-match interview. "It was a brilliant team performance. There was good defensive organisation. We were outstanding on the counter attack and we controlled our spaces really well.

"We were clinical in front of goal. We scored four and could have had arguably two or three more. It was a brilliant win for us and I'm delighted for everyone. It's obviously really special because of the nature of the game — it was two teams that have been doing outstandingly well and doing the city proud throughout the course of the season."

Many have been impressed by what Roberto Martinez has done with Everton this season, and it's nice to see them succeed, so long as that success does not surpass Liverpool's. Tuesday's match could prove to be a defining moment in both clubs' seasons as the battle it out for Champions League places, and Brendan Rodgers unsurprisingly thinks the most important thing is the three points earned on the back of his club's nearest and dearest rivals.

"We knew it was going to be a big match," Rodgers continued. "I'm more delighted for the players and supporters. For me, it's three points; I'll be more delighted at the end of the season if we can arrive in the top four. I'll probably overanalyse the performance and see the areas we can improve on going forward.

"All wins are important, but especially against your rivals. We know there's still a wee bit to go, but psychologically it was a big, big win for us and one that can reiterate the confidence and belief in the squad."

With two huge matches against Arsenal coming up in successive weekends after Sunday's visit to the Hawthorns, Liverpool will need all the psychological priming they can get in order to prepare for the Gunners.

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