Liverpool didn't have a great day at the office against Queens Park Rangers on Sunday, eking out a 3-2 win thanks to two own goals and one legitimately scored goal from Philippe Coutinho. As dire a performance as it was for a league match, the team played to a level that simply won't cut it once European competition starts up again this week, and Jordan Henderson is looking for the team to improve.
"We all know we need to be better than that," Henderson told the Liverpool Echo. "We’re delighted with the three points but the performance wasn’t good enough. We will take the positives and we will work on the negatives in training ahead of a big game on Wednesday.
"It wouldn’t matter if it was Real Madrid or whoever next, we need to improve in all areas after that. They’ve got some great players but you want to be playing against the best players and the best teams in the world. That’s how you improve as a player. We have to go out there with no fear and focus on playing the way we know we can. Our performance level needs to be high. We’re capable of getting a good result."
The home match against Real Madrid is Liverpool's marquee match of the fall, and hosting the defending Champions League winners is exactly the kind of European night that most Reds have been craving for the last four years. The performance against QPR wasn't up to scratch to face a team in the relegation zone let alone a club of Real Madrid's calibre, and it would be unfortunate for Liverpool to falter at home in front of the Kop if something does not change.