Steve McManaman believes Liverpool should be able to cope with Europa League demands

Liverpool Anfield Road Paisley Gateway 2

Liverpool begin their Europa League campaign against Bordeaux, but the narrative has always been that the competition hinders a club's domestic season.

Former Liverpool midfielder Steve McManaman has told the Liverpool Echo that the Reds should have no problems coping with the demands of the Europa League.

The narrative is that the competition has a negative effect on the English sides, with the typical Thursday/Sunday fixture schedule, but given the signings made in the summer, and the number of players the squad now has available, McManaman believes Liverpool should be in a position to make a decent go of the competition. 

Several changes are expected ahead of the game as the Reds try and freshen things up in order to remain competitive both on the domestic and European front.

McManaman said: “Liverpool spent a lot of money this summer to strengthen the squad and should be able to cope with playing two games per week.

“People go on about playing Thursday-Sunday, but you just have to get on with it. Teams in other countries manage it okay.

“I don’t know what Brendan is planning team-wise. I’m sure there will be some changes but it’s a great opportunity for some of those who haven’t played much football so far this season to stake a claim to play against Norwich.

“Liverpool have found goals hard to come by so far and they need to get some confidence back ahead of the weekend.

"It’s up to those who play against Bordeaux to step up to the mark and get the team back to winning ways. Doing well in Europe can help them in the league.”

Taking into account the back-to-back defeats in the Premier League that have put pressure on Brendan Rodgers, the trip to France to take on Bordeaux should be seen as an opportunity for Liverpool to get some momentum back into their season. A win could see the Reds take control of the group early on and breathe some confidence into the side ahead of a big domestic game against Norwich City on Sunday.

The fixtures now come thick and fast for Liverpool, but with players soon to return from injury, there is an opportunity for them to stake their claim for a place in the starting XI, while some of the younger members of the squad can show what they can do and other new signings who haven't settled in yet can get vital minutes under their belts to improve their form.

Liverpool have to see this competition as an opportunity. Not only that, but they could do with improving their UEFA coefficient to position themselves better going into these events in the future. A European journey would be welcome, and confidence from it can contribute to positive results elsewhere. 

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