The battling qualities Liverpool showed at Turf Moor were worthy of the three points they secured, Brendan Rodgers reflected after his team recorded a 1-0 victory over Burnley on Friday.

An incisive piece of approach play by Philippe Coutinho on 62 minutes released Raheem Sterling to scamper in behind, round the onrushing goalkeeper and tap into the net for the winner.

It proved the reward from a Boxing Day encounter that tested the Reds' mettle, particularly in the first half - when the hosts were largely in the ascendancy and struck the post through Danny Ings.

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Following the final whistle, Rodgers insisted that the travellers deserved the result, which begins a hectic period of festive football in a positive manner with back-to-back home fixtures to come.

"In terms of our character and resilience in the game, we showed outstanding qualities when needed," the Northern Irishman told reporters inside the stadium.

"It was difficult in terms of the fluidity in the game; they pressed really hard and made it difficult for us, in particular in the first half. But I felt we were better in the second half.

"There weren't many chances in the game at all, but the one clear one that came to us we put away. We deserved the three points.

"We had to show a different side today, with different types of qualities to what we showed against Arsenal and other games, like Bournemouth.

"The crowd really gets behind the team and they are a team that are always in the game. They don't concede too many and it's always very tight.

"The players deserve huge credit, because even though we hadn't played so well in the first half, we actually defended reasonably well. We got our blocks in, stopped crosses and with anything that did come into the box, we got up to the ball and defended really well.

"We needed to show a bit more composure on the ball in the second half, so we made a change with Emre [Can] coming on [at half-time].

"He showed really good athleticism, power and football ability in that position. What we had to do and defend, we defended well. It was a great three points and I'm delighted with them."

Rodgers further expanded on his tactical decisions during the interval - responding, in particular, to a question of whether he considered switching to four players in defence.

He said: "I've played many systems and many adaptations to how we want to work. I felt that wasn't the issue, that wasn't our problem.

"I felt we needed a little bit more composure in building the game. It's credit to them [Burnley] because they pressed the game so well, and they've done that against every team they've played against, whether it's home or away.

"I felt if we got our spacing right and just opened up the pitch a little bit more, it'd allow more opportunities for us to keep the ball, but that was still always going to be difficult today."

Shortly after the hour mark, however, the breakthrough was discovered, with Coutinho - a goalscorer against Arsenal last weekend - providing the creative touch.

It was the Brazilian's lofted assist beyond the Burnley defence that allowed Sterling to collect, dribble around Tom Heaton and coolly find the target for his third strike in three matches.

The scenario was very similar to an opportunity the No.31 had not taken when the Reds visited Old Trafford earlier this month, and Rodgers pointed to his improvement in composure.

"It shows what a great learner he is," the manager commented. "He is in a position now where he's going to receive a lot of opportunities in that type of situation, because of his pace - which will take him away from anyone.

"He's going to get those central runs, running onto the ball. Because he's playing in that position, he's gone away with the coaches and worked on that type of finish, both left side and right side.

"He showed great composure and he showed great ability to learn, to beat the 'keeper and finish it really well. His development and ability to want to be better has got us the three points."

Meanwhile, Rodgers confirmed Liverpool will need to check on the fitness of Brad Jones ahead of Monday's clash with Swansea City at Anfield.

The goalkeeper was forced from the field after just 16 minutes at Turf Moor, with fellow custodian Simon Mignolet his replacement.

"It was his thigh muscle," said Rodgers. "We'll have to look at it to see where Brad is at. If he's missing out [on Monday], we've got young Danny Ward and he would come onto the bench."

Jones' injury handed Mignolet an early return to goalkeeping duties for the Reds, having been named on the bench for the past three matches, and the boss was satisfied with his display.

He reflected: "I thought he did well. He came for a couple of crosses really well; caught one and punched one. He didn't have a great deal to do, and his kicking was good.

"He's worked hard since he came out of the team and he came on, kept a clean sheet and that was important for us."