Kolo Toure looks to Europa League for Liverpool salvation

Liverpool defender Kolo Toure hopes the Europa League can save their season after an agonising penalty shoot-out defeat in the Capital One Cup final left them with little else to play for.

Kolo Toure looks to Europa League for Liverpool salvation

Jurgen Klopp’s side are nine points off fourth place in the Premier League - although tomorrow night’s match at home to Wembley conquerors Manchester City offers a chance to reduce that - and Champions League qualification via that route looks highly unlikely.

So the main priority now is trying to qualify for the premier European club competition by winning the Europa League.

They will have to get past arch-rivals Manchester United, whom they have drawn for the first time in Europe, in the last 16 but Toure believes it is the only way to salvage a campaign which has occasionally promised success but ultimately failed to deliver.

“Winning the Europa League can save the season and the Premier League is not done yet,” said the centre-back.

Captain Jordan Henderson has backed the players to bounce back immediately at Anfield and exact some sort of revenge on Manuel Pellegrini’s side in midweek.

“We had a situation against Chelsea after the cup final when we played them a few days later and played very well (winning 4-1 at Anfield).

“It is hard, it is difficult, but that is life and football and you have to deal with it as best you can.”

Goalkeeper Simon Mignolet will spend some time analysing his performance in the Capital One Cup final, but agrees the Reds have to move on quickly from the disappointment.

The Belgium international was at fault for Manchester City’s goal at Wembley, allowing Fernandinho’s shot from a narrow angle to pass under his body.

Nevertheless he did make two or three excellent saves, including two from City’s dangerman Sergio Aguero to keep his team in the game.

“It’s not easy after (losing) a final but we have to perform, make sure we keep going in the Premier League and in the Europa League.”

Meanwhile Bacary Sagna is targeting more trophies to give manager Manuel Pellegrini a glorious send-off at City.

Right-back Sagna believes City’s Cup win can provide a springboard for a strong charge in the Premier League and Champions League.

He feels that would provide Pellegrini with a fitting farewell as the Chilean prepares to make way for Pep Guardiola this summer.

Sagna said: “It is never easy to know the manager is leaving but if he can leave with trophies it is better and that is what we are trying to do. That is what we will try to do with the league and the Champions League.”

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