‘Liverpool can still challenge’ claims Anfield legend

Liverpool legend John Barnes insists Brendan Rodgers has what it takes to lead Liverpool to a top four challenge this season.

The Anfield chief’s job looks to be hanging by a thread after a disappointing start to the season, both domestically and in the Europa League. The Reds currently occupy ninth position in the Premier League after seven games, as well as needing a penalty shoot out to overcome League Two side Carlisle in the Capital One Cup and then failing to beat Swiss side FC Sion at home in the Europa League.

Such an indifferent start to the 2015/2016 campaign has seen Rodgers’ ability to lead Liverpool to success called in to question, with large sections of the Anfield faithful calling for him to be sacked should they fail to beat arch rivals Everton in the Merseyside derby this weekend.

But Reds legend Barnes still believes Rodgers is the right man for the job, and is confident a top four challenge is still on the cards this season.

He said: “The heat is always on managers these days so early but Brendan has to deal with that.

“He can handle it. I still think Liverpool will challenge for the top four.”

Liverpool are still only two points off the top four and could close that gap should they emerge victorious against Everton this weekend and other results go their way, which would significantly ease the pressure on Rodgers.

And Barnes believes the situation Liverpool have found themselves in recently isn’t as bad as many are making out.

“They started well, then obviously lost to Manchester United and West Ham, which hit them hard,” he said.

“They’re still doing better than Chelsea, though, so there’s no need for any knee-jerk reaction.”

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