- Premier League
Skrtel: Liverpool sent a message
Liverpool defender Martin Skrtel insists his side sent a stern warning to their Premier League title rivals with a convincing 4-0 win over Fulham on Saturday.
Skrtel added his name to the scoresheet, with a Fernando Amorebieta own goal and Luis Suarez's double moving Liverpool back into second place.
Liverpool's title credentials came under question after last week's defeat to league leaders Arsenal, but Skrtel is confident the Reds' season is back on track.
"We wanted to send a message - we are here and we are ready to fight," he said. "We are happy with the three points today. We wanted to keep a high tempo. Even after the first half and it was 3-0, we wanted to play our game."
Steven Gerrard's pinpoint cross allowed Skrtel to head home Liverpool's second goal, and he was thankful to his captain for the assist.
"It was a brilliant cross," he added. "I have scored 10 goals and maybe three quarters of them have been from a pass from Stevie. I'm happy because that was my first goal (of the season) and hopefully I can get a few more in the future."
Manager Brendan Rodgers insists Liverpool's ability to collect points against teams below them in the table proves they have improved since last season.
"We're just taking it game by game. The evidence we've shown, that's seven games we've now won," Rodgers said. "If you tag that onto our form from January, it shows we're collecting points. When I first came in here, there was vulnerability in games like this - there seemed to be nervousness around the group for some reason.
"But over time, our mentality and focus in the games is good, and we're becoming relentless in these types of games. That's what Liverpool is about; the energy and that commitment to winning games are there."
Rodgers also reserved some plaudits for Gerrard, who has come in for criticism at times this campaign.
"After I've been here and assessed and looked at Steven, I felt that his delivery is as good as it gets," he added. "There is no-one that delivers a ball like Steven Gerrard. I felt the other players were not utilising the quality that we have with his delivery.
"I've just asked them to be much more aggressive when they attack the ball. Every week, I ask him where to put the ball and he puts it there.
"You saw that with the two goals from the free-kick and the corner; he has incredible quality in his delivery. Some of our combination play today was outstanding and we looked a really decent side."
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