Liverpool legend: it really is crunch time in title race

Hansen assesses Liverpool's title chances with ten games to go.

Former Liverpool defender Alan Hansen believes that his old club will now know what the pressure is like of being in the title race after they leapfrogged Arsenal into second place at the weekend.

The Reds are currently four points adrift of Chelsea who are top, and are ahead of Arsenal on goal difference. They are also two points ahead of Manchester City having played two games more than this season's League Cup winners.

Hansen wrote in his column for the Daily Telegraph: “Inevitably there will be comparisons with the Manchester United team in 1992. United had not won the league for a quarter of a century, and got themselves into a strong position, but when the pressure started to build they couldn’t handle it.

“After winning at Southampton and moving into second place, this is a new experience for Liverpool’s players and it really is crunch time.

“Rodgers’s attitude has simply been if you score four, we’ll score five. Usually I would never go along with that because sooner or later you’ll come unstuck, but it’s worked so far. He’s realised playing that way is going to give Liverpool massive dividends.

“It might not work in the games against City and Chelsea when the games will be tighter but, make no mistake, he will keep playing that way.

"If they are still in with a chance of the title with two games left, then they'll discover what pressure really is."

Brendan Rodgers has been playing down Liverpool’s title chances for much of the season – saying that he is just looking for the side to improve its performance level – and that they look to win the next game they’re playing in.

His players – notably Steven Gerrard – has said “why not?” to a title challenge whilst also saying everyone around the club must remain calm.

The Liverpool boss has said the side enjoys and relishes the expectation that comes with playing for Liverpool – with the history the club has of winning trophies, it is a fan base that wants consistent progression and success.

The target this season was to get in the Champions League yet Liverpool seem to have surpassed those expectations and put together an improbable title challenge having finish seventh in the league last season.

image: © Vincent Teeuwen

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