Brendan Rodgers has wasted no time in piling the pressure on his Liverpool team by stating nothing less than a trophy would satisfy his ambitions for the incoming season.
‘I want a trophy this year,’ he said. ‘My sole aim in the first three years was to get us into the Champions League. I knew what it meant to the city and the supporters, so my drive in that period was to get us back.
‘Now I want the club to win the big trophies again. That’s what I said to the players. The expectancy this season is continual improvement. We want to win. To be successful is winning trophies.
‘I don’t think it puts pressure on us. We were ahead of schedule last year. I just think there is a real excitement, not pressure of last year. We know we can do it now. We embrace it and I am looking forward to this year.
‘We've got players who have had disappointments in their careers and picked themselves up again. We went so close but it is only the beginning for us. I’m super hungry to be a champion and succeed and in the short period of time we have shown we have the credentials to do that.
‘The Premier League is going to be as competitive as ever and we've got the belief behind us from the early stages of the season we can win it.’
Liverpool came so close to winning the title last season after embarking on an eleven game winning streak. However, a slip by none other Liverpool captain and one club man Steven Gerrard saw the season crumble with only three games left. Rodgers, however, believes Liverpool can show their mettle by going one stage further.
‘If you look at the history of the winning teams they have always come close,’ he added. ‘The United team that won it in 1993, they came close in 1992 when they lost it to Leeds. They came back the following year and won it. That set up an era of winning for them. It has made us even more unified and stronger to be more successful in the future.’
Rodgers also believes that selling former club talisman Luis Suarez will not inhibit the club from achieving objectives.
‘Liverpool is not a selling club, that’s for sure,’ he said. ‘The big clubs lose the big players at some point. That’s reality. It’s not due to any lack of ambition. Sometimes you lose your best player and the key is planning your success beyond that.
‘Luis had his time here and has looked to move on. He will be in Spain for a time and then end up back in South America.
‘We’re in a really healthy position now. The conversations we've had with players and agents is showing the power of the club is back again.’