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Rodgers raring to go

27 August 2013

Liverpool step into the Capital One Cup with manager Brendan Rodgers aiming to uphold the Reds’ proud record in the competition

Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers will send his team out with the aim of starting a run to the Capital One Cup Final when they face Notts County at Anfield in Round 2 on Tuesday evening.

The Reds are record winners of The Football League’s major Cup competition, lifting the trophy on eight occasions in 11 final appearances.

Their most recent success in the competition came under Kenny Dalglish in 2012. If they can repeat the feat this term it would give Rodgers, appointed four months after that Wembley triumph, his first trophy as the club’s manager.

His team will be hot favourites to beat Sky Bet League 1 opponents whose only win in five matches so far this season was in their Capital One Cup First Round tie against League 2 Fleetwood Town. 

But Rodgers will take no chances. “We will have a strong team out against Notts County,” pledged the manager as he looked ahead to the televised Cup tie which comes on the back of a superb start to the Premier League season for his side. 

“I may make one or two changes from the team that won at Aston Villa on Saturday,” he added, “but we will treat Notts County with the same respect as we give Manchester United. We always respect whatever opponent we play against, no matter what division they are in. 

“But our focus is on ourselves to get the job done and get into the next round. We want to do well in every single competition this season and so we’ll give it absolutely everything to get as far as we can.”

In contrast to County, the Reds have won both of their league games to date and without conceding a goal. They sit second in the top flight table, one point behind leaders Chelsea but with a game in hand.

Success is in the air at Anfield and former Swansea City boss Rodgers, hungry for a first major trophy in management, said: “I’m delighted with the start we’ve made to the season. It’s still early days, but after the club won the League Cup two seasons ago it would be great to do it again.”

While Liverpool have a glorious League Cup history, Notts County have never progressed beyond the Round 5 of the competition.

And history suggests that the League 1 team are unlikely to reach the Third Round this season. The Magpies have not beaten the Reds in their last 12 meetings and have failed to score on their last five trips to Anfield – losing all five games.

But the League Cup is famous for upsets and County boss Chris Kiwomya will urge his players to make the most of a big night in the spotlight.

“This game is a real bonus for the club and a great opportunity for the players,” said Kiwomya. “I’ll tell them to go out and enjoy themselves and we can hopefully come up with something special.”

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