Steven Gerrard "pleased" with Liverpool's opening fixtures

© PA Photos
Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard is pleased that his side have a relatively easy start to the upcoming Premier League season.

Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard has admitted that he is pleased to have a relatively comfortable start to the upcoming Premier League campaign.

In their opening nine matches Liverpool face only one side - Manchester United - who finished above them last season and begin with a home match against Stoke City on August 17.

It is a far cry from last season's opening fixtures, which saw the Reds play Manchester City, Arsenal, Manchester United and Everton in their first nine games, but Gerrard still believes that his side will need to be at their best in every match this time around.

"It could have been an awful lot trickier. We've got to be reasonably pleased with the start we've got but every game in the Premier League is tough," Gerrard told the club's official website.

"You need to turn up and perform. I look at the fixtures all the time but the most important thing is to not get too carried away and look at that first game. We need to get off to a good start in terms of being positive for that first home game."

Meanwhile, Gerrard has expressed his belief that Liverpool could clinch a top-four spot if they replicate their end-of-season form throughout the upcoming campaign.

Steven Gerrard celebrates scoring a penalty and the winner against Spurs on March 10, 2013
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