Liverpool defender Daniel Agger believes his side are growing in confidence under new manager Brendan Rodgers.
Agger netted the winner in the Reds’ 1-0 victory over Southampton on Saturday, a result which took them just four points short of sixth-placed rivals Everton despite a disastrous start to the season.
And the Denmark captain believes that the Merseysiders are becoming more courageous in possession as the season progresses thanks to their improving performances.
“Confidence is a big thing here and I think we have it,” the Dane told reporters. “We are brave on the ball, want to go forward and we are not just playing around and I think that is the difference.
“I think we are creating more chances than last season. I don’t see the statistics but the feeling on the pitch is we are creating bigger chances.
“The last couple of games we’ve played really well. I think the Tottenham game [on Wednesday] was one of the best games I’ve played in for a long time – we played them off the pitch.
“It is difficult to compare two seasons but it is feeling better now.”
The 27-year-old, who has suffered significantly from injuries since arriving on Merseyside in 2006, went on to reveal he is feeling in peak physical condition this term.
“I always enjoy playing football. It is being on the pitch not outside and the last year or so it has been good for me,” said the defender.
“You learn all the time when you are playing football and I am doing some different things than I did a few years ago.
“I am trying to look after myself better and it is helping. It is just things like the way you train, work in the gym, how you recover – and I think that is the most important thing.
“It is also helping with the team around us, the physios and the manager giving us time to recover because that is always difficult in this league.
“When you are playing so many games it is hard to recover. You need to use the time well and the manager is really good at that.”
Agger also spoke of the need for Liverpool to supplement the threat of Luis Suarez with goals from elsewhere, with the Uruguayan suspended for the Reds’ trip to east London to face West Ham on Sunday.
“Everyone knows Luis is a quality player and if you lose one of those it is a big miss,” he added.
“Hopefully another player will step up because if you want to move up the table not just one player can get goals. It was nice to get on the scoresheet [against Southampton] – it is about time – and of course I want to contribute more.”