Belfast Telegraph

Carragher optimistic over future

Jamie Carragher believes the future is bright for Liverpool as they look to close down Tottenham in the hunt for European qualification.

The Reds grabbed a crucial point from Sunday's Barclays Premier League clash at Arsenal, which finished 1-1 after two stoppage-time penalties during a dramatic finale. It leaves Kenny Dalglish's side four behind Spurs, who are currently fifth, but have played two games less.

"There have been a few times where we thought we can catch Spurs, then a couple of times when we lose a game that we can't - now after these last two games we probably think we can," said Carragher.

The teams are set to meet at Anfield on May 15, by which time the Liverpool defender - who showed no ill effects after being knocked unconscious following a clash of heads with youngster John Flanagan - hopes the gap will have been slowly chipped away.

He added: "We have now got two homes games to come, but the best thing is not to worry about Tottenham and just worry about ourselves, then see at the end of the season where we come."

Youngsters Jay Spearing and Flanagan both started again on Sunday, while 17-year-old Jack Robinson came off the bench to replace injured full-back Fabio Aurelio.

England under-19 midfielder Jonjo Shelvey also made an appearance, all of which left veteran Carragher, 33, in no doubt his club's future was in safe hands.

"Having all these young players is great testament to them and the work done down at the Academy as well as the manager for giving them a chance," said Carragher, who has made more than 600 appearances for the club.

"To achieve what we have in the past two games with all the injuries and having to play the young lads bodes really well for the future this season and next.

"Over the past few years our academy has had a bit of criticism, but if you look at the last 15 or 20 years, there can't be many clubs who have produced more quality players than Liverpool."

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