Liverpool: Steven Gerrard has asked Liverpool fans to be patient as they aim to end their miserable run of Premier League results. The Reds have lost six of their last seven league games - their worst run for over 50 years - and have slipped to eighth in the table, below local rivals Everton.
The Anfield club won the League Cup earlier this season and will face Everton in the FA Cup semi-final, but captain Gerrard is focusing on their next league game at home to Aston Villa on Saturday as they try to improve their form.
"There are a lot of challenges ahead this season. I'd ask the supporters to be patient; we will get it right," he told the club's official website. "We have had a mixed March. We're in a league position we're not happy about and we need to look at ourselves and try to move up the league as soon as possible."
Gerrard scored a hat-trick in last month’s Merseyside derby and was named the Reds’ Player of the Month for March, but he is keen to see the team perform well as a whole.
"It's always nice to be rewarded for personal achievements, but from day one I have always said it's about the team," he said. "It's nice as a player to know you're doing your job properly. Now I need to help the team to improve and become more consistent."
"The Everton game was obviously a highlight for me in March. It was a great team performance, but besides that there weren't many highlights. Let's hope April has many more and that we can climb up the table and get to the FA Cup final. Although we have been inconsistent in the league, we have shown we are a stronger squad and can beat anyone."
Meanwhile, Liverpool manager Kenny Dalglish has accepted that making the Reds a force on the European stage again will be a big task. A poor 2011-12 season has seen Liverpool drift between sixth and eighth all season - they currently lie 16 points off the Champions League places - and Dalglish is aware of the task facing him to get the club competing once again with the strongest sides.
"It is always difficult to get back to where they were because they were so high up," Dalglish told reporters. "But it [the method for success] has not changed too much really - it takes a lot of hard work and a lot of effort. We have good players who can get there but you need confidence and belief in yourself and you need a bit of luck. We can work as hard as we possibly can and if we do our side of it, then at least we can look at ourselves and say we had a right go at it."
Dalglish believes that hard work and effort can see Liverpool eventually climbing up the table and bringing European football back to Anfield.
"At every football club it is [about] hard work but I can't believe how hard work is a bonus for people," he said. "I think that was taken as given that you work hard; so for us we'll work hard because you get nothing if you don't. These lads are genuine and honest and they have worked really hard to get any success they have had. We just have to keep on going and believing and try to keep our confidence up that the hard work will be rewarded eventually."