Riera wants Reds to match Chelsea's record

October 28, 2008

Liverpool's new Spanish winger Albert Riera believes the Anfield club must now embark on a record-breaking unbeaten run of their own having ended Chelsea's long-standing sequence of home success.

Liverpool's 1-0 victory at Stamford Bridge on Sunday sees them top of the Premier League going into tomorrow's home clash with managerless Portsmouth.

That win ended Chelsea's four-year, 86-game spell of unbeaten home league matches.

Riera, who had an outstanding game in west London, now sees that level of consistency as the only way Liverpool can begin to make their own title dreams come true.

Riera told Liverpool's official website: "Maybe we have beaten the best team in Europe right now. They have started the season very well. They were four years unbeaten at home and we are happy to have stopped this record.

"Now we want to make our own record. It's the best start Liverpool have ever made in the Premier League and we want to keep that going. It is very difficult to create the kind of record like Chelsea did. It's unbelievable to go 86 home matches unbeaten.

"You play every three days and there's a lot of competitive teams. Also, the motivation is always there for teams when they play against the likes of Chelsea and Liverpool.

"But we will try - especially at home because it's very important to win your home games, and it's how you win titles.''

Riera likens the current Liverpool under Rafael Benitez to the Valencia side that won two La Liga crowns under the same coach.

The 26-year-old said: "When I played against Valencia for Real Mallorca it was the same. It was difficult to beat them. A Rafa Benitez team doesn't always have to play well to win because they are very strong tactically and mentally.

"The idea is always very clear and that's very important - every player knows what they are doing when they go on the pitch. The mentality of any Benitez team is always strong. It's always a winning mentality, and that's the feeling I had when I came here.''

He added: "Against Chelsea, we had a clear idea of what we wanted to do. Sometimes you have an idea but then you get out on the pitch and realise it's wrong, but on Sunday we played exactly how we prepared.

"Chelsea are very strong and attack with a lot of players. So, our strikers had to be the first line of defence, and also we couldn't play long balls. We had to play it out from defence and keep the ball because Chelsea aren't as good when they don't have the ball.

"I would compare them in this way to Barcelona or Real Madrid. Our preparation was the key because we were really well drilled on how Chelsea play.''

The winger added: "We are very strong as a team and have a good mentality, but we are only at the beginning of the competition and it's too early to start speaking about titles.''