'It's never nice to sit on the bench' - Liverpool keeper Mignolet happy to be back in favour

Simon Mignolet claims to be “happy” again at Liverpool following a frustrating period out of the side.

The Belgium international started the season as Jurgen Klopp’s first-choice goalkeeper.

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He was, however, to be replaced by summer signing Loris Karius in September.

The German kept Mignolet rooted to the bench until mid-December, when high-profile errors of his own forced another tactical rethink.

Mignolet has been able to consolidate his position since being recalled and says his focus now is locked on helping to steer Liverpool to a top-four finish in the Premier League.

Simon Mignolet Liverpool

He told Sky Sports: "I just try to do my job.

"It's never nice to sit on the bench. Everybody knows it is not what you want as a professional footballer but it's about responding and coming back.

"I'm happy I am playing now and I'm trying to do my best to help the team. In the end that's the main thing. As a club we want to meet our objectives to get into the Champions League next season.

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"That's what we fight for and that's the only thing I personally think about also. I don't look to myself too much, it's about the dressing room, our team-mates and the club itself reaching that objective to play in Europe.

"Liverpool has always been on top both in England and Europe and so we will try to do that next year."

Next up for the Reds is a Merseyside derby date with local rivals Everton.

That contest will see Mignolet trying to prevent his international team-mate Romelu Lukaku from adding to his division-high 21 goals this season.

Romelu Lukaku Everton

The burly frontman will pose the most obvious threat to Klopp’s side at Anfield, but Liverpool will not be focusing too much of their attention on the Toffees’ star striker.

Mignolet added: "Lukaku is in a good moment and we will have to deal with him. We have to prepare ourselves for that but it's Liverpool against Everton, not us against Lukaku.

Red mist in the Merseyside derby

"He has all the ability he needs to be a very good player in the Premier League. He has strength, finishing and he is very important for Everton.

"He can do as much as he wants to do in his whole career, we just have to try and keep him quiet this Saturday."

Liverpool had worked their way back into form prior to the international break, collecting seven points from their last three fixtures, and will be looking to cement a standing inside the Champions League places on Saturday lunchtime.

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