Raheem Sterling dedicated his stunning opener against Norwich City on Sunday to Brendan Rodgers in order to show appreciation for the manager's unerring faith in his abilities.

Sterling's sheer ingenuity had the away end at Carrow Road rocking a mere four minutes into the tie as he tore across the field in the direction of his manager.

The youngster had galloped forward in trademark fashion, side-stepped one tackle and hammered past John Ruddy to open the scoring and set Liverpool on the way to a crucial 3-2 win.

Norwich were resurgent, not once but twice; however, Sterling was always a threat for the visitors and with the scores at 2-1, he produced another slaloming run to poach his 10th goal of the season.

Afterwards, Rodgers placed the winger on a par with Europe's brightest young talents - and Sterling reserved an equal amount of praise for his manager as he reflected on another vital three points.

"He has had belief in me, he has put me in different positions and had the faith to try me there," the 19-year-old told the Liverpool Echo.

"He has had great faith and I am just glad I got a goal for him and a goal for the team. I knew there was a lot more to come from me. I just needed to have confidence and right now my confidence is sky high.

"It was a great win against Norwich. We knew there was pressure on us but we just took it as another game. The last 10 minutes were a bit nerve-racking but I thought everyone did collectively well. We fought for our lives, and we got the result in the end.

"The manager told us to make sure a result like the Chelsea one [against Sunderland] didn't happen to us. He told us Norwich are fighting to stay up and we knew what to expect. We did really well to stay together when it was tough late on. We got the three points, and that's all that matters."

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The victory over Neil Adam's relegation battlers edged Rodgers' side five points clear at the top of the Barclays Premier League table with just three games remaining.

Chelsea, who sit second after slipping to a surprise 2-1 defeat inflicted by Fabio Borini and Sunderland on Saturday, are up next for the Reds on what promises to be another whirlwind afternoon at Anfield this weekend.

"We are taking it step by step," insisted Sterling. "We know what a big part of the season this is. We will just go into Chelsea and try and do what we did against Norwich. We go again next weekend.

"We come in every day, we see each other and we know what the dream is. We are keeping each other modest. If we keep working hard, there is a real goal at the end of it. We just have to keep our head down, keep working hard and concentrate on the weekend."