Rodgers rests stars for Young Boys clash
LIVERPOOL manager Brendan Rodgers admits he is trying to protect the club's Premier League season by fielding a virtual reserve side in Europe.
The Reds have had their worst start to a campaign in 100 years with just two points from their opening four matches and it does not get any easier with arch-rivals Manchester United heading to Anfield on Sunday.
As a result captain Steven Gerrard, Luis Suarez, Jose Reina, Glen Johnson, Martin Skrtel, Daniel Agger, Joe Allen and Martin Kelly have all been left behind for this evening's Europa League clash with Swiss side Young Boys.
It means the likes of Samed Yesil, Suso, Andre Wisdom, Conor Coady, Adam Morgan, Jack Robinson and Dani Pacheco have all been included in the Europa League squad - which has an average age of just 21 and includes seven teenagers.
"I can understand why people would perceive us as not taking it seriously but I will always do what is in the best interests of the football club," said Rodgers.
"There is no doubt the Premier League is our number one priority.
"There were parts of the game against Arsenal (after their Europa League play-off last month) where we were a bit leggy so we have to make sure we are all firing for Sunday.
"I am fully aware that when you pull on a Liverpool shirt you are expected to win the games so I've brought a team I believe can win the game."