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Rafa determined to do Fulham

last updated Friday 09th November 2007, 11:28 AM
Rafael Benitez
Rafael Benitez

LIVERPOOL manager Rafael Benitez is hoping that his side can take their midweek Champions League form into the Premier League and start turning their home draws into victories.

Although Liverpool remain along with Arsenal one of only two clubs unbeaten so far during the Premier League campaign, they have only won one of their five league games to date.

With eight potential points dropped so far at Anfield, Benitez’s side are currently seventh in the table but had they turned those draws into wins then they would now be standing at the Premier League’s summit ahead of Arsenal and Manchester United.

Benitez said: “The key is to be as good as before at Anfield because last season we were really good at Anfield so we must try and do the same – hopefully the last game (8-0 against Besiktas) will help because people will have more confidence and will know that we can score goals.

“We cannot continue drawing games at home we need to start winning right now that is clear because we want to be as close as possible to the top of the table so we need to win at home and away, starting against Fulham.”

Apart from the 6-0 crushing of bottom club Derby County, Chelsea (1-1), Birmingham (0-0), Tottenham (2-2) and Arsenal (1-1) have all returned from Anfield this season with a share of the spoils.

The differences between success and failure can often be subtle and Benitez points out that with a little bit of good fortune then his side’s home record in the Premier League could be much healthier.

He said: “If you analyse some of the games, Chelsea we must win, Arsenal we could win but was really difficult and the others against Tottenham we were winning 1-0 and had two clear chances and made two mistakes and against Birmingham we had control to the last 10 to 15 minutes and they had two counter attacks.

“The difference of maybe one goal could make a big difference in the table.

“The other day you could see that the team was doing the right things from the beginning, creating chances, passing the ball and moving the ball. Sometimes when you score the first goal you have the confidence that you need.”

Seeing Liverpool dismantle Besiktas so easily on Tuesday night cannot have been comfortable viewing for Fulham manager Lawrie Sanchez given that his side have failed to win away so far this season and have only picked up two Premier League wins in total away from Craven Cottage in 43 games since the end of the 2004/05 season.

During that period, Liverpool have triumphed over Fulham 4-0 and 5-1 at Anfield, where the Londoners have never won.

However, Benitez does not believe that the Besiktas result will have a great effect on his team’s opponents. He said: “Fulham know that it is a different competition, playing in the Premier League rather than the Champions League.

“They have experience of playing at Anfield and will try and play a physical game and be very compact.

“They will try and play counter attacking football because they are scoring goals away and for them it will be more or less the situation that it was before.”

Source Chris Beesley at Liverpool Daily Post
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