Go easy on Fulham and you'll lose FA Cup final berth, says Liverpool boss Dalglish
22:04 GMT, 30 April 2012
Kenny Dalglish has warned Liverpool's players their FA Cup final places will be in jeopardy if they fail to play with maximum intensity against Fulham.
The Liverpool manager is set to rest influential duo Steven Gerrard and Luis Suarez at Anfield this evening ahead of Saturday’s season-defining date with Chelsea.
However, Dalglish will not take any other precautionary measures and has reminded his squad they will be in grave danger of missing out at Wembley if they try to coast through their final fixture.
Eyes on the prize: Dalglish wants his players to give everything against Fulham
'The most important thing is to be yourself and play as you normally play – I think that is common sense,' said Dalglish, who expects Andy Carroll to be fit after he missed Saturday’s 3-0 win at Norwich with a groin strain.
'The FA Cup Final is a game beyond what we are playing now. We are playing Fulham and we have got to pick a team that is going to beat them.
'We’ve got 20-odd players that we can put on to a pitch. Everyone will read something into the team that we pick but we just want everyone fit and available for the weekend.
'We have to give every player the best possible chance to be available for Saturday but, at the same time, we have got a responsibility to win this game. That is the priority.'
Dalglish needs no reminding about the perils of midweek game before the FA Cup final as in 1988, when Liverpool were chasing the double, he saw Nigel Spackman and Gary Gillespie, two of his key players collide, with each other and sustain serious head injuries.
Star performer: There's no questioning Suarez's efforts
It had a massive impact on how they played in the final against Wimbledon, which Liverpool lost 1-0, and Dalglish has reminded his current charges that taking it easy will lead them to run the risk of suffering a similar fate.
'One of them never called for the ball and two of them went for it,’ he recalled.
'The more careful you are then the better chance you have of getting injured.'
Keeping Suarez fresh will be key to Liverpool's chances against Chelsea and Dalglish believes the Uruguayan's form is back to the dazzling levels it was at the beginning of the campaign.
'It is not just goals that you assess his performances by,' said Dalglish. 'It is the quality of what he does. He has always done something in a game that has been a benefit to us.'