Liverpool's Murphy rallies the troops after 11-game drought


  • Other Sport
  • Wednesday, 15 Jan 2003

LIVERPOOL: Danny Murphy has told his Liverpool teammates to follow his example and fight their way out of a slump that has seen the Reds go 11 Premiership games without a win. 

Gerard Houllier’s side are 14 points behind leaders Arsenal and four points off fourth place and a Champions League qualification berth. 

But Murphy has told teammates to take heart from his own recovery from being on the verge of an Anfield exit. 

“I have had problems in the past which have been well documented, and there was a point when I did not think I would play another game for Liverpool,” said the midfielder. 

“But I worked hard and came through it and it shows that we can do the same as a team. 

“For many of the players, this is the first bad spell they have had. All the best sides have spells like this, and they have managed to get back and win things. We have to remember that. 

“The morale is not bad and is better than most people believe. We have been through a hell of a time but it has brought us closer together as a squad. 

“We are trying to put it right. We have sat down as a team and been analysing it. 

“If we could put our finger on it then we would all be a manager, but it is difficult to pinpoint. 

“The first thing we have to do is see if individually and collectively we are doing things right. We have had meetings and are trying to work out what each individual can do better,” he said. 

“One positive is that we are not losing now. We keep drawing and we are not conceding too many goals. Our confidence has been affected but we are heading in the right direction.” 

Houllier has kept faith with his players throughout his team’s barren run, but Murphy admitted the Reds’ boss would be forced to ring the changes if things did not improve. 

“We have to repay Gerard Houllier. He has taken so much criticism on our behalf, but he can only take so much,” Murphy said. 

“We are not up to the standards we have set ourselves, and the manager will not accept this forever. We have to take the action ourselves.” 

Murphy is convinced Liverpool can start winning again. 

“We really believe we can turn it around,” added the England international. “The season is not a catastrophe yet, and we are still in the FA Cup, the UEFA Cup and the semi-finals of the Worthington Cup. “We believe we can actually reach the Champions League. – AFP 


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