When enjoyment comes one's way, it's best to fully savour its aroma without any unnecessary contemplation. Of course, this isn't a realistic plea when such delights give rise to the potential of a glowing future—it's only natural to become excited at what could be after an entertaining victory in South London.
Christian Benteke boasted a record of five goals in six games against Liverpool, a statistic that suggested he would give his former club much to think about. Crystal Palace also had previous with just a single defeat in the last five meetings with Liverpool. Even with inexplicable individual defensive errors, Saturday's last Premier League game of the day at Selhurst Park was the scene of a convincing victory for Jürgen Klopp's visitors.
Ten league games. 23 points. Only Arsenal and Manchester City ahead on goal difference. Into the quarter-finals of the EFL Cup with a home tie against Leeds United. Big victories. Good football. Players excelling in unfamiliar positions. An effervescent attacking unit. A confident captain. Goals and more goals with hardly a clean sheet in sight. A home game against seventh-placed Watford before the last international break until March 2017. What could possibly go wrong?
The Reds have won four out five home games in all competitions this season and should be eager to push on against Walter Mazzarri's visitors on Sunday. Five points separate the top six, but Chelsea hosting Everton combined with a North London derby could increase the narrow gaps between the early Premier League pacesetters. At this stage, any incremental advantages should be snared when an opportunity arises to do so.
In gameweek nine, Liverpool beat West Bromwich Albion when Arsenal, Manchester City, and Tottenham Hotspur all drew their respective games. These results allowed Chelsea to become part of the leading pack by thrashing José Mourinho's uninspired and floundering Manchester United. About a quarter of the league season has elapsed, and by the time November shuffles aside for December, just under two-thirds will remain. While the season is still young, it has progressed well beyond its infancy.
This league is full of managers with reputations that can be preyed upon unexpectedly. For Liverpool, however, focusing on each step of the journey should take priority even with greater attention that thrilling form brings. Talk of tiles, top four finishes, and more should be left for others to explore. Klopp appears to be a managerial darling, the subject of analysis and praise in a culture where compliments can quickly give way to criticism. Liverpool fans, too, play their role in this. Do not forget the overwrought "soul searching" after the defeat to Burnley in August.
There is no intention to admonish those who believe that this season could be special. How could any fair-minded individual question something as transient as the happiness of a football fan? Liverpool will not go through the remainder of the season unbeaten. Not every game will be won, but there is plenty to appreciate right now beyond points and performances. A more structured revival of the spirit and football displayed in 2013/14 has been witnessed this season under the guidance of Klopp.
Whether it's Roberto Firmino, Philippe Coutinho, and Sadio Mané dismantling defences before choreographing celebrations or hugs freely given by the manager, Liverpool just have that feelgood factor. If one subscribes to the notion that manager and club have found a perfect partner, this still the early part of the Jürgen Klopp era. Managers get a chance at Liverpool, while Klopp's managerial history shows that he tends to stick around.
This could be a fun ride all the way to 2022 and beyond.