BRENDAN RODGERS believes title favourites Manchester City could crack under the pressure this week.
The Liverpool boss will tell his side to go out all guns blazing at Crystal Palace tonight in a bid to overhaul City’s superior goal difference.
Defiant Rodgers is refusing to throw in the towel in the scrap for the Premier League crown despite his side losing their advantage with defeat by Chelsea last week.
City just need to win their last two games at home to Aston Villa and West Ham to win the title on goal difference after beating Everton on Saturday.
But Rodgers believes the intensity of the final week of the final week of the season could force Manuel Pellegrini’s side to bottle it.
He said: “It is a tough ask for City.
“No matter how it works, at this stage of the season to play three games that really, really matter is a real, real tough ask at this stage of the season.
“Manchester City need to win all their games which means they will have won five games in a row and they have only done that once this season in the league.
“It will be a wee bit new for them as well. It is certainly not over by a long way.”
City are nine better off in the goal difference stakes with two games to go for Pellegrini’s side.
But Rodgers is confident the Reds could make up that margin in their final two games.
They would have to put a serious dent in that at Selhurst Park.
And Rodgers has called for all-out attack against Tony Pulis’ side and again against Newcastle on Sunday as they chase a first league title for 24 years.
He said: “The message to the players is take it to the final day. We have seen so many things happen on the final day before.
“If there is any team that can score goals and turn it around it will be us. There is no question.
“We aim to score goals and be defensively strong.
“I have seen it before. Chelsea beat Wigan 8-0 in the last game of the season a few years ago.
“I am not paying any disrespect to Newcastle at all but what we are saying is if there is a team that has shown it can score goals, it is us.
“We are not a 1-0 team. We showed that at the beginning of the season but what have shown is we can score goals.”
Rodgers knows it will be tougher to mount a title charge next season with Champions League football to contend with as well.
And he uses Borussia Dortmund’s struggle to balance European competition with their domestic duties as the prime example of how difficult it can be.
Dortmund finished 25 points off Bayern Munich last season in the German top tier despite pushing their rivals all the way in the Champions League final.
Rodgers added: “Of course it will be more difficult next season. We have seen that.
“The season that Borussia Dortmund got to the Champions League final they did not do so well in the league, so it’s harder to balance that.
“It’s why you need the depth in your squad, but I’m very optimistic to keep driving us forward and I see this as a beginning, not just a one off.
“We’ve brought the club back into the reckoning and it’s where we want to stay.”