SWANSEA (Sporting Alert) — Liverpool will look to keep the race for a top four finish interesting and Swansea City hunt a European place in the Monday night Premier League fixture.
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The two sides will wrap up the latest round of games when they face-off at The Liberty Stadium.
A win for the Reds will see them moving to 54 points, but Rodgers know that the travel to Swansea will not be easy.
Club captain Steven Gerrard is back in contention for the clash after missing the last seven games with a hamstring injury, but he must fight back for his place.
The veteran midfielder has been in and out of the lineup this season even when he is fit and Rodgers says the former England skipper is not an automatic pick for the game on Monday.
“I am respectful and this guy is one of the greatest players in the history of the Premier League and arguably the greatest player of this club,” the Reds boss said.
“But what I do know is that Stevie always puts the team first. I have huge respect for him whether he is playing or not playing and huge admiration for him as a player and person.
“But I am not one that makes emotional decisions on whether I like someone or not. For me it is about picking and finding the right balance in the team and what makes the team function to ultimately win.
“He still has big qualities that we will need between now and the end of the season.
“What you have seen over my time here is that I rely on the team. The team, of course, has to have good players in it, but ultimately it is about the team and what is going to benefit and how we can get results as a team.
“I will repeat again the most important thing is Steven is back fit and we have Lucas Leiva coming back too. The beauty of this season is that everyone has had an opportunity in the first three or four months and then we have found a way to win.
“It is something everyone has to respect. It is about the team and the spirit of the team and I will always pick the best team I feel to win a game.”
Liverpool also revealed that defenders Martin Skrtel (head) and Mamadou Sakho (hip) are also expected to be fit, but midfielder Joe Allen remains doubtful with a hip problem.
In the meantime, Swansea City, which sit ninth on 40 points can move up a notch with a win as the race for Europe places heats up.
Striker Bafetimbi Gomis is expected to be available for the Swans after collapsing during the 3-2 defeat at Tottenham 12 days ago.
The club revealed that Gomis suffers from a vasovagal condition which causes low blood pressure, and it caused the Frenchman to faint at White Hart Lane.
He returned to training this week and has been cleared by a specialist to play, but manager Garry Monk will be keeping a close eye on the forward.
“Bafe knows better than anyone what measures to take,” Monk said. “I understand there are questions people want answered but the issue is not as big for Bafe and the people at the club.
“He has lived with it his whole life, it happens occasionally and when it does so in a public place that scrutiny comes with it.
“But he has trained as normal this week and does the same as every player, and if you look at his life there are more days when he has been fine rather than when something has happened.”
Liverpool will be keeping a close eye on former player Jonjo Shelvey, who has scored three goals (one own goal) in as many games involving these sides and is pumped up for the home contest.
Swansea (squad): Fabianski, Naughton, Fernandez, Williams, Taylor, Cork, Ki, Shelvey, Routledge, Sigurdsson, Gomis, Tremmel, Rangel, Amat, Fulton, Carroll, Britton, Montero, Dyer, Emnes, Oliveira, Grimes, King.
Liverpool (squad): Mignolet, Toure, Skrtel, Can, Markovic, Henderson, Allen, Moreno, Sterling, Coutinho, Lallana, Ward, Lovren, Johnson, Sakho, Gerrard, Williams, Lambert, Balotelli, Borini, Sturridge.