Nicol: Man City vs Liverpool has goals written all over it
Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard admitted this season would be a disappointment if the club failed to secure a top-four finish.
Liverpool went back to the top of the Premier League after the Reds claimed a 3-1 win over Cardiff City last weekend.
Led by the prolific Luis Suarez, the league’s top scorer, Liverpool are on a four-game winning stretch, scoring 17 goals and only conceding three in that period.
And ahead of Liverpool’s Boxing Day heavyweight clash against Manchester City, Gerrard said the club had the squad to claim a top-four spot.
"I think if we were to finish outside the top four I think it would be a disappointing season,” Gerrard told Sky Sports.
"With the talent we've got in the squad and the way we've started, we've set ourselves up with a magnificent chance of finishing in the top four so if we were to let that slip and finish outside everyone would be disappointed.
"The key to us is to finish inside the top four, it helps the club financially to bring players in and to end that long spell without it.
"I think we're title contenders if we're in the title race with 10 games to go -- I don't get carried away or change targets or raise expectations around the city just because we've started the season very strong.
"To be in the title race you've got to be there with 10 games to go with a realistic challenge of winning it. I do have confidence and belief in my team-mates that we're capable of surprising a few people this season."
And Gerrard confirmed he has not changed his plan to see out his career as a one-club man.
"If something happens where I fall out of contention or someone else comes along and takes my place and I stop enjoying it, if I still feel I could offer someone else something of course I'd consider it, but for the time being I can see myself seeing it out here," he added.