Brendan Rodgers' response to watching Liverpool's 11-match winning run end on Sunday was to encourage both his players and the club's fans to raise themselves for Crystal Palace next week.

Despite a relentless 90-minute performance in which the Reds utterly mastered possession of the ball and launched innumerable attacks, Chelsea stunned the hosts to steal a 2-0 victory at Anfield.

With seconds remaining in the opening period, Demba Ba surged forward through the middle and slid a finish underneath Simon Mignolet to hand the visitors a crucial advantage at the break.

The Londoners then dropped in, often defending with 10 men behind the ball, throughout the second half and sealed their result as Willian concluded a fast-paced counter-attack in added time.

Rodgers' team remain top of the Barclays Premier League table following the weekend fixtures, and the manager stressed the necessity of rousing the club for the trip to Palace in seven days' time.

"Our objective is for ourselves," the Northern Irishman told after the final whistle. "We now need to win the two games and see where it takes us.

"Then we will be fine. The players have been absolutely fantastic. We'll now focus on Crystal Palace and see where that takes us.

"I said how proud I was of them, because they were absolutely fantastic. We've been on a run of games and the games that we've won have been exceptional.

"To lose is obviously a big disappointment, because we haven't had many games that we have lost.

"But we'll take that on the chin; this is a great group of players, a very honest group, and we'll continue to work on."


The euphoria surrounding the Reds' incredible unbeaten record in 2014 - which catapulted the side to the summit - was evident in the welcome afforded the squad by the fans before the game.

Once again, supporters lined the streets around Anfield, congregating in huge numbers and creating a mass of colour to produce a frenzied atmosphere and provide a pre-match boost for the team.

Rodgers reflected: "It's a big thank-you as always. They were absolutely fantastic. Coming in on the bus was amazing, with the support they have given us.

"They can't do any more; they have done everything and done remarkably well for us. We're now going to need them in the final two games.

"They'll be disappointed like us, but we'll recover, we'll go again and hopefully we can get the win next time, against Crystal Palace."