Nigel Pearson knows Watford will have to be at their best to have any chance of beating Liverpool on Saturday, but will not treat the match with the champions-elect as a free hit.
The Hornets are second from bottom in the Premier League and without a win from any of their last six matches in all competitions.
A home clash with Liverpool, who have won 26 of their 27 league games this season, is not the ideal fixture to have when looking to turn around your form, but Pearson remains upbeat.
He told Sky Sports: “There’s probably less expectation on us in this game than there might be on others, but it’s our next game so there are three points up for grabs in every game you play.
“First and foremost, I want us to play as well as we can play, that’s really what it’s about.
“We don’t like losing any game but we know we are certainly going to have to be at our best to give ourselves an opportunity in this game for sure.
“Free hit? We’re in the Premier League and we want to stay here and so if you go into games writing off a number of games because you’re playing against the top sides then you limit your opportunities.
“We just have to go out there and give it our best and if we’re at our best and they’re not quite at their best, who knows.”
Pearson’s first match in charge of Watford was a trip to Anfield on December 14, which ended 2-0 to Jurgen Klopp’s side.
The Reds are on course to break several records this term and the Watford manager feels winning the Premier League could be the first of many league titles for the Merseyside club.
Ex-Leicester boss Pearson added: “This current Liverpool team has an opportunity of creating history this year.
“Because of the way in which the squad of players has been developed, and the time Jurgen Klopp has had to get the club to where they are now, they’ve got a very realistic chance of being dominant for some time.
“The things that shine through, for me, are the quality of the individuals within it.
“But on top of that, the winning mentality and the culture that’s developed there over a period of time is going to be the thing which allows continued development of what is, at the moment, an outstanding team.”
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