We're Still In With A Shout-Liverpool v Huddersfield-260419

We’re Still In With A Shout

Well that was pretty emphatic wasn’t it. Liverpool 5, Huddersfield Town 0. I think that is emphatic – don’t you? The upshot of it all is that we’re still in with a shout. All those connected with Man City must be thinking, “will they ever go away”

With only two league games left, the answer to that is, “no, we won’t be going anywhere”

Last night’s game was a comfortable stroll in the end. It seemed as though we didn’t get out of second gear at times. In fact we didn’t really need to. The second half in particular seemed to be like a training session at various stages.

As we scored after 15 seconds, I’d be tempted to say “game over” at that point. But not so. For about 10 to 15 minutes after the first goal, Huddersfield seemed to be giving a right good old go. Although already relegated they played quite well for that 10 minute spell or so.

Having relegation already confirmed can take the shackles of certain teams. Take a look at Fulham. Since their relegation was confirmed after a 4-1 hammering at Watford, they’ve won 3 out of 3. The latest was a 1-0 win against another relegation candidate, Cardiff City. What a winning goal by ex-Red, Ryan Babel by the way.

Huddersfield as well played without fear for much of the game. But in particular, after our first goal they created a few scary moments. Playing with three up front at times was causing us some problems.

We’re Still In With A Shout

We're Still In With A Shout-Liverpool v Huddersfield-260419
We’re Still In With A Shout-Liverpool v Huddersfield-260419

But one of the reasons we can say that we’re still in with a shout is because this team has learned the very useful art (to say the least) of how to win football matches under almost any conditions or situations.

Many detractors have been waiting for us to implode because to quite a few pundits we apparently haven’t been playing well. But how do you define ‘playing well’?

In the Brendan Rodgers 2013/14 season we were banging the goals in and at times the attacking football was breathtaking. Courtesy of Messrs Suarez and Sturridge mainly. But, didn’t we also leak goals for fun at the other end. Take the previously mentioned Cardiff City for instance. In the 2013/14 season we blasted six goals in at their place. But we also let in three at the other end.

Were we, as a team, playing well? Take an inspired Suarez and Sturridge out of the equation and it may well have been a case of how poor we were because of all the goals we were conceding. There has to come a stage where you can’t rely on outscoring teams all the time as a result of mainly two inspired strikers.

A Better All Round Unit

We’re still in with a shout because we are simply a far better all round unit. Clearly the signing of Virgil van Dijk has gone a huge way to making us so much more solid and at the back. Anyone who has played football will testify how much a dominant central defender can have a massive impact on the whole team. Not just as a defender when we are being attacked. Or as a threat from set pieces when we are attacking.

A dominant defender who also organises and controls all those around him is invaluable. I’m sure both Andy Robertson and Trent Alexander-Arnold generally know when to bomb forward, but do so maybe more often, or with more freedom, due to the guidance they are receiving from VVD.

Last night he was so in control of his own game, his presence on and off the ball just ripples through the team. Just look at Joel Matip. Quite often criticised a fair bit in some quarters, look how his game has improved in recent months. He is showing some great form. As well as his own ability, has VVD had anything to do with the uplift in form?

Dejan Lovren stepped in for Matip last night and looked as though he’d never been away. And so on. His influence cannot be understated.

Not Just VVD Though

As I say, the mere presence of VVD and his own impeccable performances has such a ripple effect. But, even with that positive vibe coursing through the team, the players still have to take care of their own individual performances.

You can probably go through the whole team and make a case of how they have flourished this season. He’s not the only one, but as an example, Gini Wijnaldum’s contribution this season has been immense. I must admit I could take him or leave him last season. But this season. Wow, what a step up in terms of consistency and effectiveness.

To many, he should be an automatic choice in our midfield three. But there again, you could make a case for Jordan Henderson, James Milner, Fabinho and latterly, Naby Keita. Throw the fit again Alex Oxlaide-Chamberlain into the mix and what a great position to be in. Such an abundance of midfield talent.

As a side note, it was so good to see The Ox back last night. What a great reception when he came on. And he so nearly scored soon after coming on. That would have brought the house down. Welcome back The Ox.

Without A Doubt – We’re Still In With A Shout

Fair do’s the season may still see Manchester City clinch the title, but what a season we have enjoyed. I think the statement that we’re still in with a shout does not only apply to this season. The future certainly looks rosy wherever we end up this season. Onwards and upwards is so very evident.

Who knows, Burnley may do some damage to City tomorrow. We can only hope. We did our bit last night. Not more we can do. To coin a well used phrase, irrespective of City’s result tomorrow, “we go again next week”

I Think Aaron Enjoyed It

It’s not very often we see a celebrity from TV in The Kop. But last night, we had Aaron – AKA, Danny Miller – from Emmerdale, in the row in front of us. I’m sure he enjoyed the game and the result. Did he join in with the songs though? Over to you Danny. Did you?

A big apology to Clare who sits behind me. Clare requested I try to nab Danny if he went past so that she could have a selfie with him. Sorry I couldn’t deliver Danny to you Clare. I was much too engrossed in the game to nab him. Maybe next time.

Jurgen Certainly Did

One great highlight of being on The Kop, as well as the songs, the camaraderie and the atmosphere, is seeing Jurgen Klopp on the pitch to celebrate with the fans after a victory.

Here’s a video of Jurgen celebrating after last night’s win…..

Two league games left and we’re still in with a shout. It’s not that often we’ve been able to say that over the years. Let’s enjoy however long is left of this particular ride. Come On You Reds!! YNWA!! JFT96

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