Brendan Rodgers delighted with Liverpool’s determination in Stoke win

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Rodgers delighted with Liverpool’s determination in 1-0 Stoke victory…

Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers has praised his team’s determination, after Glen Johnson’s late goal secured the club’s first win in five Premier League games, defeating Stoke City 1-0.

The full-back reacted quickest after Rickie Lambert’s header hit the crossbar with five minutes remaining, and goalkeeper Simon Mignolet came to the Reds rescue in stoppage time, as he denied Bojan a dramatic equaliser.

Speaking after the match, Rodgers said: “I’m satisfied. People look at how my teams like to play and I think they think I’m happy with 5-3 and 6-4 – I’m equally, if not more than happy, with 1-0. You can’t play perfect football.

“We have shown wonderful character this week; we should have won our game in the week, and in Europe it is never easy. Today, in the Premier League against a good team, we have kept a clean sheet and won against a team that doesn’t concede many goals.

“I was very satisfied and my overriding feeling was that I was delighted for the players because they are a wonderful group to work with.”

A pleasing second-half performance from Liverpool came in stark contrast to a turgid first-half, indicative if the Reds recent struggles, leading to reporters quizzing Rodgers on what he told his players at the break.

The Northern Irishman responded by saying: “I felt we just needed to up the speed of our game a little bit, move the ball a little bit quicker and look to press the game a little bit higher up the field,” replied the boss.

“I thought in the first half we had enough of the ball, but lacked a little bit of intensity, which is understandable because the confidence of the team isn’t at the top yet. In the second half we were excellent and you just felt it was coming.

“The players deserve a huge amount of credit for the courage they showed today to keep going, and the resilience and persistence against a good side that have got really good players. A hard-fought victory for us, but a well-deserved one, I felt.”

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