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Page last updated at 12:45 GMT, Friday, 24 September 2010 13:45 UK

Roy Hodgson insists Liverpool will overcome problems

Venue: Anfield Date: Saturday, 25 September Kick-off: 1500 BST Coverage: BBC Sport website, BBC Radio 5 live, local radio, Final Score & Match of the Day


Hodgson irritated by questions over 'approach'

Liverpool manager Roy Hodgson has insisted that the struggling club will ride out their current troubles.

"We'll live through the bad moments and over the course of the season we'll do well," he said.

Fans are planning to stage a sit-in protest against American owners Tom Hicks and George Gillett on Saturday when Sunderland visit Anfield.

Hodgson added: "The protest doesn't help but the situation is something I've had to live with since I arrived."

Reds chairman Martin Broughton has been trying to find a buyer for the Merseysiders as the early October deadline looms for repaying or refinancing the club's £237.4m debt with Royal Bank of Scotland.

Former Fulham boss Hodgson added: "I, like anyone at Liverpool Football Club, would be very happy if the ownership situation got clarified, and in particular if we got a very good owner that can help us move forward.

"It tests our mettle, our desire and strength. I am very confident the strength of this club, the strength of the playing staff and the people around me is more than enough for the club to come through this period," he continued.

"But while you are in that period it is unpleasant."

Rich in history and success, the Merseysiders plumbed to a new low on Wednesday after being dumped out of the Carling Cup by League Two side Northampton.

But Hodgson, 63, believes that too much must not be read into one bad result.

"If we'd had a positive result on Wednesday this would have been quite a positive press conference," he told reporters ahead of the Premier League match against Sunderland.

"People would have been talking about [the 3-2 loss at] Manchester United, and how well we did in the second half.

"But all of that flies out of the window."

Captain Steve Gerrard is also confident that Liverpool are capable of moving up the table.

"I'm not one for being negative - I always look at the bigger picture," said Gerrard. "We've got two winnable games at home against Sunderland and Blackpool and if we can take six points from them I'm sure the league will look a lot brighter."

Liverpool have endured a difficult start to the season and find themselves 16th in the Premier League table, although they are still only three points adrift of Manchester City in fourth place.

Though Hodgson admitted that the defeat against Northampton was a "major setback", he has drawn a line under the performance - and, as he seeks to restore morale, stressed that the situation at Anfield is not as bad as it is being portrayed by some.

Robert Peston

"I've had many disappointments. You can't work for 35 years at the level I have without having disappointments," he reflected.

"Any criticism which comes my way and the team's, we have to accept.

"Wednesday was a really bad result for the club, it has knocked us backwards, and has put us in a situation where we are heavily criticised - perhaps rightly so.

"[But] everyone predicted the start of the season was going to be difficult looking at our programme, players leaving and coming in and discussions about the future of the club.

Gerrard staying positive

"That is how it's proved to be. We've had some good moments... but also some bad ones.

"It's been pretty much a mixed bag. We are reading an awful lot into a bad result."

Hodgson replaced Rafael Benitez as manager at Anfield during the summer, after leading Fulham to the Europa League final in May.

BBC Sport pundit Mark Lawrenson, who played for Liverpool between 1981 and 1988, believes that the problems run deep at the Anfield club - and that Hodgson will need time to turn the tide.

"Liverpool supporters knew at the start of the season that they were playing for sixth - fourth place was never realistic," Lawrenson commented.

League Two Northampton celebrate their victory

Liverpool 2-2 Northampton (2-4 pens)

"They know that the problems are very deep-rooted.

"The main ingredient for being successful is players. And there aren't enough quality players in the Liverpool team.

"Roy Hodgson had been very diplomatic, but the match against Northampton made him realise that it was only the tip of the iceberg.

"There are so many other things going on off the pitch - the mess in terms of ownership and the like - as everybody knows.

"Roy knew it was a difficult job. Now he knows just how tough it is."

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see also
Hodgson sorry for Cup humiliation
23 Sep 10 |  League Cup
Hodgson 'deceived' by team
22 Sep 10 |  League Cup
L'pool 2-2 Northampton (2-4 pens)
22 Sep 10 |  League Cup
Carling Cup as it happened
22 Sep 10 |  Football
Hodgson named new Liverpool boss
01 Jul 10 |  Liverpool

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