Declan Rice suggests Liverpool must learn to cope with Premier League title pressure after West Ham draw

Declan Rice believes that Liverpool will have to learn how to play with the pressure of leading the Premier League if they are to avoid any further slip-ups this season and beat Manchester City and Tottenham Hotspur to the title.

West Ham secured a 1-1 draw against Jurgen Klopp’s side on Monday night that saw Liverpool suffer a second consecutive draw, allowing City to reduce the lead at the top of the table from seven points two weeks ago to just three points. With Spurs a further two points back, the title race appears to be moving back towards a three-horse race, and while City have plenty of experience in pushing on to get over the line first, neither Liverpool nor Spurs have done so in recent times.

The major concern for Liverpool was not just the stalemate at the London Stadium, but the lacklustre performance that went with it – although Klopp put this down to a number of changes to his defence as he was unable to call on Trent Alexander-Arnold, Dejan Lovren, Jordan Henderson and Georginio Wijnaldum due to injury.

Having missed a glorious chance to put West Ham 2-1 in front, Rice knows that Liverpool will continue to be vulnerable unless they can learn to play under the pressure of a title challenge, especially as teams are starting to work out how to stop the attacking threat of Mohamed Salah, Roberto Firmino and Sadio Mane.

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“The pressure was on them,” said Rice. “We made it hard for them and got a good point. The shape was excellent as well. Me, Snods (Ryan Snodgrass) and Nobes (Mark Noble), their game is to play it through the middle to get Firmino dropping in with Salah. They had to play the ball wide a lot and they have not got a target man to put a cross in to.

“We frustrated their gameplan. They will see it as two points dropped but that is a good point for us.

“We said it, how can we lose against Wolves, Wimbledon and Bournemouth but come and put in a performance like that? It is one of those, Liverpool are in town, all the fans, the pressure is on them and everyone was up for it. Nobes said before, just do your job to the best you can and you could see that on the pitch that was what we did.”