Merseyside's Stephen Bunting is taking inspiration and belief from the recent success of his beloved Liverpool FC as he bids to win the William Hill World Darts Championship.

The former Lakeside Champion is brimming with confidence ahead of Friday's last 16 meeting with reigning champion Michael van Gerwen.

Bunting breezed past Jonny Clayton 4-0 to tee up the tie after earlier battling past Spain's Jose Justicia with a 3-2 victory.

Following his favourite football team's flying start to the Premier League season, the 34-year-old Liverpool fan has revealed his plan to take the spirit of Anfield to Alexandra Palace. 

"You've got to believe to achieve," said Bunting, who is bidding to reach the quarter-finals for the second time in his PDC career. 

"I'm taking inspiration from Liverpool's massive run as it shows what a strong mentality and belief can do. 

"I had a message from Jamie Carragher before the tournament and that really lifted me. 

"I had to battle right to the end in the first match, showing that I have the guts to do it - against Jonny it was about keeping my focus and I also showed that I can do that.

"I've had some really bad Christmases over the last few years but was able to have a better one this time."

Bunting will face a stern test when he meets the world number one and odds-on favourite to lift the Sid Waddell Trophy but insist that he is not in the £2.5m tournament just to make up the numbers. 

"I am here to win it," he added.

"I believe that I'm in a better place now than I've ever been. and I'm happy to be up there, still in and doing what I'm doing. 

"It's going to be a difficult game but I am ready for it."