The Red Men are on a veritable roll right now. Winning their first seven matches in all competitions is standard setting for the club, a feat that hasn’t ever been accomplished in their 126 year existence. The craziest thing is that by all accounts, the performances haven’t even been all that great compared to how the team ended last season. Everyone knows it, and knows improvements are to come, especially captain Jordan Henderson.
Henderson himself had been held back while he regained Klopp’s preferred fitness level after a summer spent toiling in Russia for England, and has only made a couple starts since the beginning of the season. So he’s had the luxury almost of watching this team evolve through this trying first phase of the season.
“We’re in a good moment – we’ve got a good rhythm, some good performances and good results – so of course we’re confident but there’s still plenty of room for improvement, certainly after today. But, overall, we’re happy with the win.
“It’s tough against anyone in the Premier League. Southampton are a good team and when you let them play they can hurt you. At times they found some gaps and created some half-chances.
“It’s just about keeping going and keeping the performance level high. I thought the lads that came in did really well – that’s a big positive for us.”
Boss Jürgen Klopp even made some uncharacteristic early substitutes, taking off powerball Xherdan Shaqiri at halftime in favor of James Milner to shift the shape of things, when Liverpool were up by 3 before the break. The ability to keep up with these levels of intensity even through rotation is a different kind of strength than Liverpool have ever had, even if it’s a bit difficult for some other lads who are ready to get their boots on the pitch.
“We have been training really hard, even the lads that haven’t been playing as much as they’d like,” continued the captain.
“They are just waiting for their chance and when they get onto the pitch they want to perform for the team and win games. That’s what we’ve done again.
“We need to keep going, as I keep saying every week. There’s another tough test in midweek in a different competition. We need to just keep going and keep improving.”
Knowing how early it still is in the season and how many tough tests we have already beat and have yet to conquer, can’t help but inspire a whole new kind of excitement in this team.
If they keep improving just as Henderson says, they’ll be a force difficult to compete against.