The 39-year-old is still chasing his first league win at the club and looks set to pick a weakened side in Europe so that his players are fresher for their crunch league encounter
After being held to a draw away at Sunderland in their last league outing, Rodgers will be looking to play an altogether younger side in their European game on Thursday, potentially handing a debut to new striker Samed Yesli and he believes resting senior players is the only option available to him ahead of Sunday's big game against their bitter rivals.
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"I can understand why people would perceive us as not taking it seriously but I will always do what is in the best interests of the football club," Rodgers told reporters.
"There is no doubt the Premier League is our number one priority, I’ve made that clear from the off. If I lose some of my key players that can make it very difficult for us for the next two or three months.
"There were parts of the game against Arsenal where we were a bit leggy so we have to make sure we are all firing for Sunday.
"No matter what the perception is I know I’ve brought a team I believe can win the game."
Since moving to become manager of the club in the summer from Swansea, Rodgers is still without a league win at his new club in four attempts.