Brendan Rodgers has insisted that Liverpool are entitled to have lofty ambitions for the 2012-13 campaign – revealing that he has told his players not to merely aim for fourth place in the Barclays Premier League.
Back-to-back league victories have boosted the Reds into the top half of the division and within four points of Champions League qualification ahead of the crucial Christmas period.
But the boss has noted that his team - who have lost just once in 11 league fixtures - are also capable of closing the gap to the highest positions.
Asked whether fourth is a realistic goal for Liverpool, the Northern Irishman insisted: "So is third, so is second and maybe even first. I said to the players that everyone talks about fourth place but what about third?
"We are 11 points off second so, if we can get some consistency, keep our mentality and our focus then it is not fourth place we want to aim for. We still have to play Manchester City and we should have beaten them at home.
"You want to aim as high as you possibly can but, of course, when the club has been out of the top four for so long, that is the ultimate ambition.
"But we will not get too carried away. We are not even halfway through the league. We just need to focus day to day on our work, tactically prepare the team, keep confidence high and keep as many players available as we can in order to get results.
"I am always positive with the players because I've seen their work, their honesty and I see their willingness to take responsibility.
"I want to reinforce that it isn't just about fourth place for this club. This club is bigger than that. Everyone is talking about arriving in fourth position when there is not that big a difference between us and third.
"There is not that big a difference to second. There are 17 points between us and Manchester United and that is a big ask, of course, but 11 points isn't and four points certainly isn't. There is real belief in the group. They believe in what we are doing."