Liverpool summer signing Fabinho has insisted that Liverpool must treat their upcoming Premier League tie with Crystal Palace as a final, if they are to succeed in lifting their first top-flight title in 29 years.
Having started the season primarily on the bench, Fabinho has clawed his way into Jurgen Klopp's starting lineup in recent weeks, with the German boss' style of slowly integrating new signings into the starting XI having proved fruitful in past years.
With Liverpool boasting a four point advantage over nearest rivals Manchester City ahead of Saturday's Premier League clash, Fabinho admitted the Reds can't take their foot off the pedal just yet, with plenty of the season left to play.
"We have to take things game by game," the 25-year-old said on liverpoolfc.com. "Our next ‘final’ is against Crystal Palace and we really have to treat this game as if it were a final. There’s still a long way to go, it’s a long league season, so we have to keep calm, take things game by game and keep going."
The £43.7m summer signing from Monaco has started both of Liverpool's last two fixtures, albeit in a less familiar centre-back role due to injuries suffered by Dejan Lovren, Joel Matip and Joe Gomez.
With the Christmas period now over and the title race hotting up, Fabinho has claimed that his Ligue 1 title success with Monaco in 2017 will benefit him ahead of the campaign's final stretch.
It’s true that I did well in that league but it’s a different league," he added. "We won the league; I think it helped me for the future, as is the case now."