Gerrard: Liverpool didn’t deserve to progress in Champions League

first_img Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard 1 Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard admitted the team can have no complaints over their Champions League elimination following a 1-1 draw with Basel in their final Group B clash.The ten-man Reds crashed out of Europe’s top competition at Anfield on Tuesday night despite Steven Gerrard’s stunning late equaliser, cancelling out Fabian Frei’s opener, and a flurry of late chances for the hosts.The result means the Swiss champions booked their place in the last-16, while Brendan Rodgers side will make do with a spot in the Europa League for the remainder of the season.It was a disappointing return to the Champions League following a five-year absence – winning just once, drawing two and losing three – and, asked if Liverpool had deserved better from their campaign, a brutally honest Gerrard said: “No.“We haven’t gone out of the competition because of our performance tonight, we’ve gone out because away at Basel we weren’t good enough, and in our last game [a 2-2 draw with Bulgarian minnows Ludogorets] we conceded a stupid goal towards injury time.“You always qualify over the six games and unfortunately we haven’t been good enough.”After finding themselves a goal down after 25 minutes through Frei’s clinical strike, the Reds were given a mountain to climb when half-time substitute Lazar Markovic was harshly sent off after just 15 minutes on the pitch.Manager Brendan Rodgers slammed the ‘awful’ decision, and Gerrard acknowledged the red card proved a key moment in the must-win game.The skipper told ITV: “We knew if we were still in the game with 20, 25 [minutes] to go, if we could get that goal it would have been hell for Basel.“Unfortunately we just never had enough energy, enough legs in the last 15, 20, because the referee has sent him off.“I haven’t seen the incident, but I’m told it was very harsh.”Liverpool, without the injured Daniel Sturridge, have struggled for goals this term.Gerrard added: “What’s crucial is that we try and get our main striker back who is capable of getting us the goals to get us into the top four.“We need to try and get Mario Balotelli back firing as well. If we can get goals in the team it gives us a better chance, but at the moment it’s a bit of a roller coaster, it’s tough.”last_img

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