Liverpool v Birmingham: Rafael Benitez confident team will turn fortunes around
Benitez has presided over just one league win in four games and seen his team, considered by many to be ready to end a 20-year wait for the league championship, slip to seventh place in the nascent Premier League table, 12 points behind leaders Chelsea ahead of tonight's fixture with improving Birmingham City. But the Spaniard is sure an end to the spate of injuries and bad luck which he perceives have derailed Liverpool's campaign will help propel his side into a more respectable position by the New Year. Related ArticlesLiverpool v Birmingham City: match previewBenítez set to clash with Capello over Gerrard'Gerrard and Torres must not be picked for friendlies'Liverpool's Torres dilemmaSport on televisionPremier League table'People were talking about Tottenham, Aston Villa and Manchester City but you can see the table and it is not a big, big difference,' he said. 'It's a question of one or two games and everything will be different. The main thing for me is for us to analyse our position and ask how we can improve. "We have to keep working and in one month or two months I am 100 per cent sure that we will be higher in the table and it will be totally different. 'In some games we have been unlucky. It's very clear. The timing, too, [has been unlucky] because against Tottenham and Aston Villa we scored and then conceded one minute later. Too many things have happened, like the beach ball, or the late goals we have conceded against Lyon. They make a big difference. But hopefully that will change for the rest of the season and it will be more positive for us.' Benitez is likely to hand Alberto Aquilani, the £20 million signing from Roma tasked with replacing Xabi Alonso, his home and Premier League debut tonight, another contributing factor to his conviction that Liverpool are far from finished this campaign. 'He is much better,' said the Liverpool manager. 'I would like to use him when we are winning because then he could play more minutes, but he wants to play. He is desperate to play. Maybe we will have to play him for 45 minutes against Birmingham. 'He knows the English game is more physical and the pace of the game is different. But I have been really pleased watching him in training because he is a quick thinker, and he plays very quick and very clever passes. I think he will adapt quickly. I hope so.'
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