Hat-trick hero Gerrard calls for sprint finish

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Hat-trick hero Gerrard calls for sprint finishLIVERPOOL: Steven Gerrard urged Liverpool to end the season with a flourish after hitting a spectacular Merseyside derby hat-trick.

Gerrard became the first Liverpool player since Ian Rush in 1982-83 to score a league treble against Everton as his side coasted to a 3-0 win over their neighbours at Anfield.

It ended a three-match losing run in the Premier League, after defeats to Sunderland, Arsenal and Manchester United, and lifted Liverpool to within two points of sixth-placed Newcastle United.

Although a top-four finish and a place in next season’s Champions League is unlikely, Gerrard is anxious Kenny Dalglish’s side do not allow the campaign to fizzle out.

“It’s been a frustrating run for us,” said Gerrard. “We need a winning streak.

“To get three goals is a bit extra, but I have to give Suarez a special mention. He put two on the plate for me. I haven’t played with him much but we have an understanding.”

Dalglish was delighted for Gerrard, who has endured a frustrating season with injuries. The midfielder opened the scoring with a perfect lob before doubling the lead after half-time following good work by Suarez. He completed his hat-trick in stoppage time.

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