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Rodgers defends Liverpool performance

ESPN staff
February 12, 2013 « Brook could fight for world title in Sheffield | Chartbeat test »
Gareth McAuley heads home the winner for West Brom from a corner © Getty Images
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Brendan Rodgers defended his side's performance and effort following Liverpool's shock 2-0 loss against West Bromwich Albion at Anfield on Monday evening.

Rodgers' men dominated possession, but goals to Gareth McAuley and Romelu Lukaku saw the visitors claim all three points and surge above their opponents into eighth position on the Premier League table. However, Rodgers is refusing to panic.

"The players gave everything," he told Sky Sports. "It was one of those games where we just couldn't make the breakthrough.

"The longer the game goes on the more likely it is that they nick one. I can't fault the players efforts today, it was just one of those games where we couldn't get the first goal.

"We weren't at our best but we were certainly on the front foot and looking to create. Full credit to West Brom, [Ben] Foster's made some brilliant saves.

"It was a good away performance from them and the longer it was 0-0 the riskier it got. I can't blame [Steven] Gerrard for missing the penalty, he had a fantastic game and he had the courage to step up and take it.

"I'm just disappointed that our good run, particularly at home, has come to an end. But we gave everything tonight and the keeper had a fantastic match. But we'll go again, we've got an important game in the Europa League on Thursday and we'll be ready for that."

Foster was certainly the standout for West Brom, denying Gerrard on more than one occasion, and later stated the victory may help Albion secure a spot in Europe next season.

"Today could be a turning point for us," Foster told Sky Sports. "We haven't had the best of times recently so it was important to get a result today if we could.

"We're just taking it one game at a time but we're obviously pleased with tonight at Anfield. It's great to be back up above Liverpool; we're not really looking at other teams but, after the run we've been on, it's a great feeling.

"We needed that [win], we have been on a poor run, performances have been decent. We knew if we kept our performances up we'd always have a chance. Set-pieces we're really strong on and we knew if we could keep it tight we'd have a chance late on through them.

"I did know a little bit where Gerrard was going to go [when he took the penalty]. I had a look before the game and knew to go the left-hand side but I also went with my instincts on it. It was an important save at an important time."

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