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Rodgers: We want title for the 96

ESPN staff
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Rodgers full of praise for his team

Brendan Rodgers says Liverpool's title challenge is being inspired by the drive to honour the memory of the 96 fans who lost their lives at Hillsborough.

His team reclaimed top spot in the Premier League from Chelsea with a 2-1 victory at West Ham on Sunday and are in impressive form.

'We're due a win over Man City'

Martin Skrtel cost his side the win in 2012 © Getty Images
  • Brendan Rodgers is yet to beat Manchester City as Liverpool manager but feels his side are due a victory. "We should have won there earlier this season, we should have won there last season and we should have beaten them at Anfield last season too," he said.
  • Man City 2-1 Liverpool, December 2013
  • City come from behind with Alvaro Negredo scoring the decisive goal after Liverpool goalkeeper Simon Mignolet fumbled his attempt to keep out the Spaniard's chip
  • Man City 2-2 Liverpool, February 2013
  • Sergio Aguero scores 12 minutes from the end to rescue a point after Daniel Sturridge and Steven Gerrard helped Liverpool overturn a 1-0 deficit
  • Liverpool 2-2 Man City, August 2012
  • Martin Skrtel's misplaced back-pass in the 80th minute allows Carlos Tevez to level and steal a point

The victory was Liverpool's ninth in succession and has set up their clash with Manchester City at Anfield next Sunday as a title decider, although Rodgers insists the pressure is on Manuel Pellegrini's big-spending club.

"I know there are 96 people in the sky who will always be supporting this team," Rodgers said as his club prepare to mark the 25th anniversary of the Hillsborough tragedy which claimed 96 lives next weekend.

"We want to do this for the great support and football family of Liverpool and if we are to achieve anything this year the 96 in the sky will always be in our thoughts, and their families."

Liverpool are two points clear of Chelsea and four ahead of City with five games remaining, but City have two games in hand and their manager, Manuel Pellegrini, is promising to go on the attack at Anfield.

Rodgers has repeated his claim that his players are taking a "fearless mentality" into their run-in despite the desperation that may be felt by fans who want to see an end to the club's 24-year wait without a league title.

He insists Liverpool remain the underdogs. "There's a number of great teams in this league, big clubs with titles under their belts in the last 10 years," Rodgers said.

"We're fighting them. Manchester City are strong and have every component to do well. They've spent money and what they've done is fantastic. They're a wonderful club and they've invested well in top players. They'll be looking to come to Anfield and get a result.

"We're embracing whatever pressure is supposed to be and enjoying our football. There's no nerves. Nine games in a row at this level is incredible."

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