Liverpool looking to rebound against Everton

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src=' ' class='caption'> Eliminated from the Champions League, Liverpool manager Rafa Benitez now needs to rally his team for Sunday's Premier League match at local rival Everton.

Updated: November 26, 2009 14:18 IST
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London :

Eliminated from the Champions League, Liverpool manager Rafa Benitez now needs to rally his team for Sunday's Premier League match at local rival Everton.

The Reds, who finished second in the league last season, are in seventh place about a third of the way through the campaign _ 13 points behind leader Chelsea. Only the top four teams in the league qualify for next season's Champion League.

"We know that in the league we have got to start winning _ and winning soon _ as we are not in the top four," Liverpool midfielder Javier Mascherano said. "This is strange for the club and the supporters because in the last four years we have always been in there, fighting for the title or to get into the Champions League and we need to start winning games, so that we can do that again."

Liverpool hasn't won in the league since it beat Manchester United 2-0 on Oct. 25.

"We know it is going to be very difficult on Sunday," Mascherano said. "But this is a really important game for us and for our supporters and we have got to start winning in the league again by beating Everton."

Everton hasn't fared much better recently, losing at Hull 3-2 Wednesday to leave the team with just one win in its last seven games.

The club's fans have been used to top-six finishes in recent seasons, but the team is now four points above the drop zone.

"It is up to the players to take responsibility, but I take responsibility for the players I select," Moyes said. "We could be dragged into a relegation fight _ particularly because of the injuries and individual performances. But I am the one who has to take responsibility for the team."

After the ailing Merseyside rivals meet at Goodison Park, the focus later Sunday shifts to the title race with Chelsea's trip to London rival Arsenal, which is eight points behind the leaders in third place.

"It is a very good moment for us and we have to keep this going because the players are in good condition and have a good mentality," Chelsea manager Carlo Ancelotti said after Wednesday's 1-0 win over FC Porto in the Champions League. "This victory against Porto was necessary to maintain this moment. We know very well that Sunday will be a very difficult match but we know that now is a very good time to play Arsenal."

Chelsea striker Nicolas Anelka, who scored Wednesday's goal, believes this season will deliver his first Premier League winners' medal since 1998, when the Frenchman was at Arsenal.

"Winning it with Chelsea will be even bigger than when I did it with Arsenal," Anelka said. "That will mean I'm in one of the biggest teams in the world."

Defending champion Manchester United, which is five points behind Chelsea, travels to last-place Portsmouth on Saturday.

Portsmouth will be coached by Avram Grant, who was appointed Thursday to replace Paul Hart.

"Avram is a very experienced and respected manager who has managed at the highest level," Portsmouth chief executive Peter Storrie said. "He is the man to help steer the club out of the relegation zone."

Also Saturday, Tottenham travels to Aston Villa, sixth-place Manchester City hosts Hull, Fulham faces Bolton, Blackburn hosts Stoke, Burnley is at West Ham and Sunderland travels to Wigan. On Sunday, Wolverhampton plays Birmingham.

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