Writer: Gavin John Day
Date:Sunday December 22 2013
Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers has sent out an ominous message to others after seeing his side take over top spot in the Premier League...
Liverpool produced another fine display of attacking football on Saturday afternoon to earn a 3-1 win over Cardiff City at Anfield.
The result represented the club's fourth consecutive victory and also took them to the summit of the Premier League standings.
All three of Liverpool's goals came in the first half and on another day the margin of victory could easily have been greater.
As it was, two more goals from leading scoring Luis Suarez - celebrating his new contract in style - and a Raheem Sterling strike were enough to secure the win despite an improved second half showing from the visitors.
Reflecting on the contest at his post-match press conference, Brendan Rodgers described elements of the display as 'excellent' and 'outstanding'.
"It was an outstanding team performance. In the first half, we were exceptional - some of our movement and fluidity in our game was excellent," analysed the Northern Irishman.
"We controlled the game, scored three and maybe could have had one or two more. In the second half, we started brightly and looked like we were going to continue that momentum.
"We gave away a slack goal, it was a poor goal, and that gave Cardiff a bit of momentum. We had to defend with a bit more aggression and more regularity.
"But overall, we scored three and could have had one or two more. A great win for us and outstanding goals."
Liverpool will remain top of the tree at Christmas if Arsenal fail to beat Chelsea on Monday night and Rodgers was quick to outline how the upturn in fortunes is not something that has happened over night.
The 40-year-old said: "Last year, it took us a while to even get into the top 10. People are talking about a good start; you can trace it back, you see from January this has been a team on the up.
"What you see now is a set of principles and footballing ideas that we have been implementing over the course of 18 months here. They are coming to fruition and the players are enjoying playing in it.
"It's an aggressive, attacking style of football, but with hard work as the core value within it. It was pleasing and I think we can get better."
Next on the schedule for the Reds are challenging-looking away trips to title chasers Manchester City and Chelsea.
The two games, which take place in the space of 72 hours, do not appear to be filling Rodgers with any trepidation however.
"We're really looking forward to the games," added the former Swansea City boss.
"At Manchester City last year, we should have won and ended up drawing the game.
"Manchester City have a great squad of players; everyone looks at this as Manchester City's title to lose because of the squad they have. For us, it's just about taking each game at a time.
"We have been on a fantastic run, the quality of our football is at a really high level - we're pressing the game very well, our aggression to get the ball back is good.
"We'll arrive there on Boxing Day in a really good moment. It's a game I'm really looking forward to."
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Date:Sunday December 22 2013
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