Liverpool and Chelsea engaged in a thrilling 1-1 draw at Anfield in the first leg of the Capital One Cup.
The Reds played some of their best football and even though Jose Mourinho said Chelsea deserved what they got out of the game, their only shot on target was Eden Hazard’s penalty while Liverpool attempted 19 shots down on the busy Thibaut Courtois.
The Liverpool boss was extremely delighted with his team’s performance and believe Liverpool can go into the next leg at Stamford Bridge and get a win to progress to the final of the competition.
a Therea s absolutely no doubt we can go into the second game and get the result,a he said.
a They’ll be happier in terms of the scoreline, but I’m extremely happy with our performance.
a I thought we were outstanding. Our performance was at a really top level, and we definitely deserved to win.
a It was a good game, a big game between two really good teams, but they had one shot on target which was the penalty, which I think shows you how magnificently we defended.
a Then our creation in the game was of a high level, the only thing that was missing was the finish. It was an outstanding team performance.
a It sets it up nicely for the second leg, when you would expect Chelsea to open up a bit more playing at home.
Rodgers was left disappointed by two decisions which went against Liverpool. Referee Martin Atkinson did not give the home side two penalties – for a handball by Diego Costa and Thibaut Courtois handling the ball outside outside his area in the second half.
a We’re disappointed we never got a penalty,a he said.
a It’s a clear handball by Costa. He’s on the floor, but it bounces and hits his arm. How we didn’t get that, I don’t know.
a Then the goalkeeper, who was outstanding, has handballed outside the area. That was unfortunate for us.a
Rodgers heaped praise on young Raheem Sterling, who scored a wonderful equaliser for the team and ensured Liverpool stay in the competition/
a The rest has done him the world of good,a he said. a I thought he was outstanding in his movement in behind, and also exploiting the space in front of the defence.
a His speed was frightening to get in, and then the finish off his left foot was excellent. It was a very good goal and he deserved it for his performance.a
Rodgers also gave an update on striker Daniel Sturridge, who could have been a difference in the game, and hinted that he could make a return from injury in time for the second leg at Stamford Bridge next week.
a He’s really kicked on in his recovery,a he said. a He’s done very well, and we will just have to look at it between now and then.a