Joe Allen still confident of Liverpool’s Champions League campaign

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Liverpool midfielder Joe Allen insists his side have the belief to end a run of three successive defeats and secure progress into the Champions League knockout stage.

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Sunday, April 27, 2014: Liverpool's Joe Allen in action against Chelsea during the Premiership match at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Having lost to Basel, their main rivals for a runners-up spot in Group B, in Switzerland the Reds then suffered back-to-back defeats against Real Madrid.

In reality those matches against the defending champions were never likely to decide Liverpool's destiny so it now comes down to their final two games – which is what was expected when the draw was made.

They head to Bulgaria to face Ludogorets – whom they scraped past at Anfield thanks to a Steven Gerrard penalty in stoppage time – next week knowing they require at least a point, while a victory would put them back in the driving seat if Madrid beat Basle in the Bernabeu on the same night.

"Before the group was under way that would have been our aim any way," said Allen.

"We understand there are no easy games in the Champions League but we have to have the belief we can get those points and I think we have the ability to do that.

"There were a lot of young players out there (in the 1-0 defeat to Real in Madrid) and they gained massive experience from a game like that.

"Taking it into the next two games in the group we will take a lot of self-belief and we are confident we can get six points from them."

If they are to have any chance of success Liverpool have to end their barren run in front of goal, which has not been helped by Daniel Sturridge's new thigh injury which has ruled him out until the new year.

The Reds have not scored in the competition since they beat Ludogorets 2-1 at Anfield on September 16.

They last failed to score in four consecutive European matches in the 2005-06 Champions League campaign, which ended at the first knockout round after defeat to Benfica.

Brendan Rodgers' side have just three points from four matches and there are just six teams in the history of the competition who have still managed to progress from a similar or worse position.

In 2001-02 Liverpool found themselves in an identical situation in the second group stage with three points after four matches but managed to qualify as group runners-up with seven points.

PA

To mark the end of the 30-year wait for a league title, the ‘Liverpool Mishmash’ poster is available to order exclusively on This Is Anfield — the history of the Reds in one image!

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