Liverpool touched down at John Lennon airport on Friday afternoon after being forced to spend an extra night in Italy due to technical problems. While in the air, we caught up with Brendan Rodgers - watch our FREE video on demand now.
The boss explained how the extra evening away from home will impact preparations for the weekend, gave his reflections on the 1-0 win over Udinese and qualification for the Europa League knockout stage, as well as looking ahead to Sunday's trip to West Ham.
Rodgers also provided Liverpoolfc.com with the latest on the fitness of Steven Gerrard, Lucas Leiva, Daniel Agger and Nuri Sahin.
Brendan, I guess it's quite a strange situation to be in - having to fly home a day later than planned?
You're better being safe than sorry. Obviously it would have been ideal to have flown back last night but the tour operators and the people who have organised us have done really well - and in fairness, it hasn't affected us too much, really. We've been able to recover well overnight and this morning, now we will have one preparation session before our game against West Ham.
Supporters will want to know how much it does actually affect things because things are planned down to the last detail. Do you think it has altered preparations for Sunday?
It hasn't affected things much because I think most of the players here will have been on the first day of their recovery, anyway. The only ones it may have slightly affected will have been the players left at home, but that's all been taken care of. Steven Gerrard, Lucas and Daniel Agger will all have done a good session this morning, so they will all be fine and ready for the session tomorrow. What was important for the players who played last night was that their preparation for Sunday - in relation to their nutritional needs - was taken care of and it was last night. It's just one of those things that you cannot control but when it happens, it's important you do the best that you can for the players. Everyone is fine and we'll look forward to the weekend.
Everyone is in good spirits because the most important thing is that we got the win against Udinese...
It was a real unique game last night. I always felt, and I said to the players beforehand, that this was a game in which we could get to the top of the group. However, it was also a game that, if things didn't work out well, we could also have finished bottom of the group, which would have been incredible. But I think the overall outcome has been very satisfying.
We had to go and win last night and that shows the great improvement in the group - that we were able to go out to Udinese, play against a team with lots of experience and come and win the game to get us through. That shows me that last night was another step forward for us in terms of how the group is evolving. But also we have been able to blood a lot of young players throughout the tournament against experienced sides.
Have you had a chance to look at who Liverpool could face in the next round?
There are going to be some fantastic teams [in the draw] - that's the nature of the competition. We've played 10 games to arrive in the position that we are now in and we now know that the next round of games is going to be difficult for us. We'll hope for a favourable draw but I think any team will be difficult to beat in the knockouts. By the time the tournament re-starts again, we're going to be in a better moment. Each day we are improving all the time. We'll really look forward to February.
The players must be confident ahead of West Ham because of last night's result?
I think our ongoing performances will give us confidence going into this game. The players are feeling confident all the time. Our last couple of victories have been narrow ones, but in those games we could have been a little more clinical and won by more. The most important thing is that we are winning games and I believe that as the season goes on, we'll become more clinical and see improvements in our finishing at the top end of the field. We know West Ham will be a tough game. They got a fantastic result in their last game against Chelsea and Sam [Allardyce] has done very, very well in getting them promoted and he's made them very difficult to beat. We'll arrive at West Ham with great confidence. The nature of our game is getting better all the time.
We're still looking for back-to-back wins in the league - is this a chance to get a second win on the bounce?
I hope so. If you're going to be successful you have got to be consistent. Over the course of this season, we haven't maybe got that wee bit of luck but we managed to go eight games unbeaten in the league - and the draws we had could very easily have been turned into victories. If you're going to challenge consistently at the top end, you are always striving for that level of consistency. In fairness to the players, their consistency and the level of their work every single day has been brilliant. We're blooding a lot of young players into the group and we're asking them to do mens' jobs at this level. Sometimes that breeds inconsistency but it's certainly something that we're improving on and if we go to West Ham and get a good result, that will keep us moving in the right direction.
No Luis Suarez at the weekend, could this be an opportunity for the younger players or will you consider a change in formation?
It's something that we will look at. It's an opportunity for probably one of the young players but we are what we are. We've got players in the group who can score goals. I saw a statistic recently that was really interesting and it was that the record number of goalscorers in any one season is 18. We've actually hit 15 up until this point and that shows you that our goals are actually spread out across the team. What we have to do is make more of the chances and get more goals. So I think we have seen that there are enough goalscorers who can score and that's something that we will look forward to at West Ham.
Steven Gerrard, Lucas and Nuri Sahin... will they be available?
Well Nuri Sahin will remain a question mark. We'll see how he is because he broke his nose last night, so that will spoil his good looks for a few days! But we'll see how he is and let the doctors look after him and assess what the risk is. Steven will be fine, he was ill for a couple of days but he is back in training so there's no problem.
We will have to manage Lucas and Daniel [Agger] carefully. Lucas is only just back from injury, so to play three games in a week would have been a bit much on his first week back, so he'll come back into the squad.
Daniel has been brilliant for us - we are just managing him so that we can maximise the amount of games he can play. We have got a strong squad going to London. Obviously Luis is a miss because he's a world-class player but our ethos will always be about the team and the collective and that's something that we hope will prove good for us at the weekend.