Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool doesn’t half love a dramatic end to the season. In his 7+ years as manager, we’ve seen the Reds in 4 European finals, an FA Cup final, and 2 of the most exciting (and most heartbreaking) title races the Premier League has ever seen.
When the Reds aren’t competing for silverware—as is the unfortunate case this season—they’ve made the most of their Top 4 races, securing their Champions League qualification on the final match day on three separate occasions (2016/17, 2017/18, and 2020/21). If Liverpool are to once again secure a spot in the coveted Top 4, they might need to once again rely on some late-season magic.
At this point last year, almost to the same week, Liverpool faced a difficult away to Manchester City, one that had the potential to be season defining. Indeed, if Liverpool had won instead of drawn, it would’ve tipped the balance of the title race in their favor. Regardless, last year Liverpool were still on for a quadruple at this point, and they successfully navigated a difficult April to stay in contention, and even inch closer to, a historic trophy haul (which unfortunately left the two biggest trophies just beyond Jordan Henderson’s grasp).
Now, they’ll need another big April, and the first week doesn’t get much tougher than this. Away to City. Away to Chelsea. Arsenal at home.
If Liverpool can get through these three matches with anything resembling a decent points haul—a big if—the remaining 9 matches are fairly generous to the Reds, on paper, at least. Of course, Liverpool’s biggest problems this season have come from “easy matches” on paper.
Indeed, if Liverpool had not acted like Robin Hood of the Premier League, stealing points from the top sides and giving them to the relegation contenders, the Reds would not be 7 points adrift from Tottenham in 4th with two games in hand.
But that is all in the past. If Liverpool can find some form against Premier League relegation fodder, they’ll quickly see their Top 4 chances improve. Five of their remaining 12 matches are against teams 14 and below: Leeds (away), Nottingham Forrest (home), West Ham (away), Leicester (away), Southampton (away).
Additionally, Liverpool have a real 6-pointer against Tottenham. Better yet, it’s within the safe confines of Anfield.
Manchester City, sadly, isn’t any of our business this season. However, a result today could set up a very exciting run-in. As a bonus, completing the double over City would put a big dent into their title ambitions.
Liverpool have the squad to make a run at fourth. And they have the experience of getting over the line when it counts the most. Let’s hope for some more late-season magic. Though, let’s try to do it without last-day drama and/or needing a goal from our goalkeeper, yeah?