x Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 16 January 2018

Benitez: Forget about Fulham draw and focus on Marseille

The Liverpool manager Rafael Benitez has told his players to focus on their Champions League clash against Marseille and not their draw with Fulham.

LIVERPOOL // The Liverpool manager Rafael Benitez has told his players to focus on tomorrow's Champions League clash against Marseille and forget the frustrating draw with Fulham. The Reds missed the chance to go three points clear at the top of the English Premier League at the weekend after failing to break down the resilient Cottagers at Anfield.But the squad have no time to dwell on lost opportunities as they are back in European action in midweek.

A victory over the French visitors - shock 1-0 winners on Merseyside last season - would secure a place in the knockout stage with one Group D match still to play. They would even go through with a draw tomorrow if PSV Eindhoven fail to beat Atletico Madrid on the same night. Ensuring qualification with a match to spare would allow Benitez to rest players and therefore assist their Premier League challenge.

So although the manager said they must learn lessons from the Fulham result, the performance must be forgotten. "We are disappointed about Saturday but we cannot talk about past games now," Benitez said. "We have to think about making mistakes and analyse why and find solutions for the next game.We are frustrated. How can we change that now? We have to analyse and talk to the players about the mistakes and try to change for the next game."

The defender Jamie Carragher admitted the players have to accept they will encounter some frustrating times at home but they have to learn how to deal with them. "Pretty much every team that comes to Anfield plays counter- attacking football and we can't complain about that," he said. "We've just got to adapt to it and overcome it because if we want to challenge for the title that is something we're going to have to do."

The captain Steven Gerrard is expected to return against the French club, having been missed against Fulham after failing to recover from a groin injury * PA Sport