Rodgers salutes Downing after Anzhi win

Liverpool boss Brendan Rodgers hopes Stewart Downing will benefit from a major confidence boost after his stunning goal secured victory over Anzhi Makhachkala.

Despite being deployed in an unfamiliar left back position, Downing produced one of his best displays for the club, in which he struck the winner to send Reds to the top of their Europa League group.

Rodgers, who questioned the wingers appetite earlier in the season, singled him out for praise after the game and is confident he can call upon the 28-year-old to fill in at the back in the future.

“It was a wonderful strike from Stewart,” said Rodgers.

“It’s been difficult for him since he has been here. It was just something to help his confidence. The Kop recognise it was a wonderful goal at that end.

“If you get that applause it means a lot. I hope that will do him well going forward. He has the qualities to play in that position.”