Nathaniel Clyne on Liverpool's solid defending and aims in the Premier League

Liverpool kept another clean sheet in their win over Sunderland at the Stadium of Light.

Liverpool defender Nathaniel Clyne feels that the Reds will not be far away from a top four finish this season after their 1-0 win over Sunderland at the Stadium of Light.

A second half strike from Christian Benteke was enough to give the Reds back-to-back wins to end 2015 and move them to within five points of the top four places - and nine points from the league leaders Arsenal.

Clyne was also pleased with the fact the Reds kept another clean sheet four days after doing the same against then league leaders Leicester City at Anfield.

The defender told the official Liverpool website: "If we're solid in defence, don't given the opposition any chances, and keep a clean sheet, there's always a bigger chance that we'll get maximum points.

"It was a good performance for us as a team and it was important to get the three points today. I think we deserved it.

"We go into the New Year with confidence and [we'll] go into every game trying to win and push up the league and see where it takes us.

"There are still plenty of points to play for and if we keep performing as we did today I'm sure we won't be too far off [the top four]."

After poor defensive displays against the likes of West Bromwich Albion and Watford, it seemed clear that work was needed on the defence, and the rarely fielded partnership of Dejan Lovren and Mamadou Sakho at centre-back seems pretty solid if the evidence of the last two games are anything to go by - with goalkeeper Simon Mignolet seemingly having great confidence in them.

Liverpool are still not firing on all cylinders in the final third of the field, even if Christian Benteke seems to be finding something of a scoring touch, but even if the Reds are not being that clinical a solid defence can work wonders.

The Reds will be hoping to carry this on into the second half of the season as they look to improve on their tally of 30 points so far, and mount a serious challenge to qualify for the Champions League. 

Have something to tell us about this article?

Register for LIVERPOOL team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch