Dublin: 5°C Friday 21 January 2022

Brendan Rodgers: 'We're much better than that'

The Liverpool manager was complimentary towards Aston Villa but still frustrated to be without Daniel Sturridge.

Image: Peter Byrne/PA Wire/Press Association Images

After his side’s 0-1 home defeat to Aston Villa this evening, Liverpool boss Brendan Rodgers gave his immediate post-game thoughts to SKY Sports.

On what went wrong:

“We started slowly in the game and probably only started to quicken up the tempo when we went 1-nil behind. I think the players gave everything today. It was probably a mixture really. We couldn’t find that quality in the final third of the field and Aston Villa defended well.  Once they went 1-nil up, they defended tightly, the back-four, the goalkeeper, the midfield all worked well together and we just couldn’t find the final pass. We had enough of the ball but just couldn’t create.”

On why they struggled to orchestrate decent opportunities:

“It sometimes what happens in football. Normally we’re a team that starts very fast and the tempo and rhythm of the game is at a high level. And for some reason we just didn’t start like that and when a good team gets in front, then it’s difficult to break them down. I can’t question the players in terms of their effort and commitment to the game – that was first-class and unfortunately we hit the post after a terrific little bit of skill. We’re obviously disappointed with the goal but no complaints. We had enough of the ball, Aston Villa scored early on so we had enough time to get back into the game but we couldn’t get the result.”

Britain Soccer Premier League Sterling started from the bench this evening but was introduced in the second-half as Liverpool tried to rescue something. Source: Jon Super/AP/Press Association Images

On resting Raheem Sterling and whether other players need to step up and create:

“It’s down to everyone. The squad we have here is a very good squad. We’re obviously unfortunate to be missing one or two but we’ve got enough quality and depth to create a wee bit more and to make more efforts on goal. But Aston Villa…in my time here and this is the third time I’ve played them, we’ve won away from home and we’ve found it difficult at home in the games. So you have to congratulate them. They’ve come here and got the three points. For us, we’re bitterly disappointed because we feel we’re much better than that.”

On still being angry about Daniel Sturridge’s injury picked up during the international break:

“It’s something I made clear during the week. We’re competing on budgets a third of the size of some of the other teams up there (at the top). I really need my best players to be available, especially when it can be avoided and prevented. Daniel, hopefully, will be back soon and we’ll get him back into his rhythm. He’s a wonderful talent and we’ll go from there. Today just wasn’t our day. Aston Villa got the three points and we now get ready for Tuesday (and a Champions League clash with Ludgorets).”

Agbonlahor shoots down shot-shy Liverpool

As it happened: Liverpool v Aston Villa, Premier League

About the author:

Eoin O'Callaghan

Read next: