Henderson keen to move on from loss

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Published: Sunday 2nd November 2014 by The News Editor

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Liverpool midfielder Jordan Henderson has urged his team-mates to use their disappointment at Newcastle as extra motivation for a daunting double.

The Merseysiders lost 1-0 at St James’ Park on Saturday as their lack of cutting edge without the departed Luis Suarez and the injured Daniel Sturridge was exposed once again.

However, they have little time to lick their wounds with a Champions League trip to Real Madrid looming on Tuesday evening ahead of Saturday’s visit of Barclays Premier League leaders Chelsea to Anfield.

Henderson told the club’s official website, www.liverpoolfc.com: “They are two big games, two games to show that we can score goals and defend better.

“We’ll look forward to that still. We’ll work hard during the week and put in two good performances, hopefully, against two top teams.”

That, however, may be easier said than done with manager Brendan Rodgers admitting as he started to analyse an unproductive day on Tyneside that “80 per cent” of last season’s goals had been taken out of his team with the absence of SAS double-act Suarez and Sturridge.

Liverpool enjoyed plenty of possession at St James’, particularly as midfield general Steven Gerrard worked his way gradually higher up the pitch as the game wore on.

However, with Mario Balotelli static and Raheem Sterling, who spent most of his afternoon wide on the right, largely becalmed by full-back Paul Dummett, home goalkeeper Tim Krul had little of note to do.

Newcastle always looked the more dangerous through the pace of Gabriel Obertan, until he tore a thigh muscle 23 minutes into the game, and then substitute Rolando Aarons, Sammy Ameobi and the marauding Moussa Sissoko.

But it took them until the 73rd minute to find what proved to be the winner when substitute Ayoze Perez capitalised on Alberto Moreno’s hesitation on the edge of his own six-yard box to hammer the ball past helpless keeper Simon Mignolet.

The Belgium international then pulled off a superb save with his foot to deny Remy Cabella a second, but his efforts were to count for nothing in the end.

Henderson said: “It was very disappointing. We came here for confidence and to get a result and we didn’t manage to do that, so we’re very disappointed.

“Throughout the game, I thought we dominated the ball but we didn’t really get in behind them or create many chances.

“We had one or two through Philippe Coutinho and Martin Skrtel from the corner, but overall, we’re disappointed not to get something out of the game.

“I felt as though we started the game well and we quietened the crowd down, kept the ball. But the ball wasn’t the problem – we were dominating the game through possession, but it was just getting into that final third and creating an opening.

“We struggled with that, so we’ll have to improve on that and kick on for the next game.”

That next game – Real at the Bernabeu Stadium – could hardly be any more difficult with the Spaniards having won 3-0 on Merseyside at a canter On October 22, and clear-cut chances are likely to be even more difficult to come by.

However, Henderson insists that is a collective responsibility despite the growing pressure on summer signing Balotelli.

He said: “It’s down to the whole team, especially the midfielders and the attackers, to make runs in behind and create lots of options and movement and combination play as well.

“I just thought we didn’t do as well as we know we can, so we’ll have to improve.”

Published: Sunday 2nd November 2014 by The News Editor

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