A few sour sorts may have watched Jürgen Klopp and the Liverpool team saluting the Kop after a 2-2 draw with West Bromwich Albion and wondered just what there was to get excited about. For most, the answer was rather obvious. Particularly when one remembered what happened the last time Liverpool were down a goal at Anfield heading into the final minutes.
Against Crystal Palace a month ago, Liverpool had been the better side on the day. At the very least they could have said they deserved a draw. They didn’t get even that in the end. Worst of all, own a goal with ten minutes to go, instead of being backed by the fans, they had watched a steady flow exiting the stadium. It was a similar situation on Sunday. This time, though, they got that support.
"The way the supporters pushed us on at the end was something I’d never seen until now in my career," said Divock Origi, whose determination to fight through a foul tackle and get his shot off led to the late equalising goal, his deflected effort a deserved result for Liverpool’s efforts. "It was very emotional. It pushed us to score that goal. We’re all in this together and we wanted to thank them."
Those wondering what Klopp was doing, celebrating a draw against a mid-table opponent in the 16th game of the Premier League season, rather missed that they weren’t doing that at all. The goal was to strengthen the bond between fans and club. The goal was to acknowledge that the team can do more—can be more—with them cheering them on late rather than heading for the exits.
The goal was to acknowledge that an Anfield that was as loud over the final 10 or 15 minutes as it has been at any point back to the final few games of 2013-14’s title challenge—and that before that hadn’t consistently provided such vocal support since the Benetiz era—had played a role. That the chants of "attack, attack, attack" had helped to push Liverpool on to a deserved equaliser.
"I think that after the three goals at Southampton it gave me a mental boost," added Origi of the role his own growing confidence played in the late marker. "I can see that everybody supports me—as a young player, when you feel loved and you play in a team like this, you can only do good things. I’m happy. We gave everything and we’re happy that we could equalise at the end."