Jurgen Klopp and Graham Potter looked for the positives after Liverpool and Chelsea cancelled each other out in a drab goalless draw on Saturday.
Neither team boasted good form heading into the Anfield contest and the game served up reflected their current mid-table Premier League status.
Yet with both sides avoiding the consequences of another defeat during their testing runs, the managers accepted a point apiece.
Liverpool boss Klopp, taking charge of his 1000th game in management, said: “I liked the start of the first half and particularly the start of the second half, so that was good and we need to extend these spells.
“We had moments when we played pretty well. For me it is clear, you have to be ready to make little steps and this was a little step.
“I expect progress and, from the last league game, it was progress, definitely. That is important.
“I think Arsene Wenger lost his 1000th game 6-0, so I am really happy that didn’t happen.”
The result leaves Liverpool with much work to do get back into the race for a top-four place.
Klopp said: “We can only influence this by winning and we didn’t do that.
“But there are a lot of games to play and, if you count all the points, a lot of things are possible. To get there we have to continue with the things we did here and in the last two games I saw progress.”
Chelsea thought they had taken a third-minute lead through Kai Havertz but the goal was ruled out for offside following a VAR check and clear-cut chances were few and far between thereafter.
Chelsea manager Potter said: “We were happy with the performance of the team, happy with the energy, the spirit and the discipline we had.
“It’s never easy coming here because of Liverpool’s quality and Anfield, so we take the point, we accept it, and move forward in a positive way.”
In terms of his side’s Champions League qualification prospects, Potter said: “Rather than worry about what is going to happen in four or five months’ time we just have to focus on the next day and the next match.
“The number of players we have had missing has been into double figures. That would affect any team but I think the team has stuck together through a period of a lot of criticism, pressure and noise.”
A bright spot for Chelsea was the performance of new signing Mykhailo Mudryk, who made a lively debut off the bench in the second half.
Potter said: “He was really good. He’s only been with us a few days but will get better the more he is with us and the more we understand him, and vice-versa, but promising signs.
“From watching him with Shakhtar and seeing his quality, he is dangerous in one-v-one situations in the final third. He can make things happen and I think he’ll get supporters off their feet.”