Sunday 8 December 2019

Rodgers concedes defeat in championship race

Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers felt his side had conceded the Premier League title by throwing away a 3-0 lead against Crystal Palace.

Palace came back to draw 3-3 at Selhurst Park and substitute Dwight Gayle's brace left Rodgers admitting defeat in the race for top spot.

Liverpool are a point ahead of rivals Manchester City but have played a game more, and victories over Aston Villa and West Ham would guarantee the title for City.

Asked if he felt the title was now gone, Rodgers (right) said: "Yes. We needed to win tonight. It's a massive advantage for Manchester City. I think Manchester CIty will go on and win the two games and they'll be champions.

"It's been an outstanding season for us, to get to 81 points, but we're disappointed right now. The dressing-room's very quiet, as you'd imagine."

Liverpool had led through goals from Joe Allen, Daniel Sturridge and Luis Suarez, before Damien Delaney's deflected drive cut the deficit and sparked a stunning comeback.

And Rodgers said: "For 75 minutes it was an outstanding performance, we got the goals. The important thing was to win the game and at least put some sort of pressure on Manchester City.

"We're very disappointed with how we conceded the three goals, it was really poor defending. We can do better on the first one, they played the short free-kick and we've got to close the ball down quicker on the edge of the area.

"The second comes from our corner, they broke away well. It's just decision-making. We got three goals against a team that was very good defensively and it was a killer blow to only get one point.

"Maybe we just got carried away, thinking we could get more than three goals. The most important thing was to win the game."

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