Liverpool take on Manchester City at home on Sunday in a match that could prove to be a decisive moment this season. The Reds boss is relishing the challenge of testing his side against the second placed side in the league, and last season’s league winners. The battle for top 4 is as intense as it can get with Arsenal, Manchester United, Southampton, Tottenham Hotspur and Liverpool all fighting for the third and fourth spot.

He said: a Our players have shown theya re up for the fight and theya ve got better as the season has gone on.

a Wea ll give everything to try and achieve our objectives.

a We know wea ve got a tough game ahead. Theya re a top class side with very good players but we take the confidence wea ve built up over recent months into this game.a

Liverpool crashed out of the Europa League on Thursday after losing to Besiktas in the second leg of the last-32 fixture (on penalties) and although Rodgers is disappointed to be out of the second European competition this season, he believes that the two campaigns have been beneficial for his squad.

He said, a You dona t like to say that wea re glad to be out because we want to win. Europe has been a great experience for us – both the Champions League and the Europa League.

a Wea ve got a lot of young players and ita s been an invaluable experience for them.

a We want to be in those competitions for a number of years going forward but we go to one game a week now after Burnley.a

The Northern Irishman also believes that the players won’t have a psychological setback and will be ready for the defending champions.

He said, a There is a physical cost to where we are at but no psychological damage, just a bit of disappointment.

a We cana t dwell on it. The players gave everything over the two games. Ia m proud of how we dealt with a great atmosphere over there. Even some senior players were saying it was the best theya d ever experienced.

a We played a reasonably solid defensive game but made one mistake and were punished which is unfortunate.a