Liverpool played seven times between September 15th and October 7th, and most of those games were big ones. In the league and Champions League they faced off against top level opposition: Chelsea, Manchester City, Tottenham, Napoli, and Paris Saint-Germain.
It was a gruelling run, and by the end of it they were slogging draws against Chelsea and City, the two sides they currently stand level with at the top of the Premier League table. Gini Wijnaldum says it’s the kind of difficult run both players and fans should embrace.
“It was really intense,” Wijnaldum said of Liverpool’s 23 day run. “We already knew it would happen. We were trying to prepare as well as possible because you have to be fresh, full of confidence, and stay positive. It means you play for something if you play a lot of games.
“Every team in the Premier League wants that, but it’s only for a few of them. We have to embrace it. Last season, City only lost two games and played a few draws [so] it’s a good way to start the season but we have to make sure we manage it until the end.”
Now, the goal will be to keep competing, to keep adding up the points, and to keep pace with City—both of last season and, by the look of it, this one as well—by targeting taking something from every single game they play from here until the end of the season.
Keep pace, keep winning—or, at the very least, avoid losing—and by the end of it they will have a chance to do something special. For this side, and this group of players, that’s the goal: embracing a difficult and busy fixture list and finding a way to earn the results.
“At the end of the season you can make sure you can win something, not at the beginning,” Wijnaldum added. “We just have to make sure it stays like that.”