To be able to win when you’re not at your absolute best is key for any side that aspires to win titles, and while it’s far too early to predict how Liverpool’s 2018-19 season will end, in the first month of the season this side has shown an impressive ability to salvage results.
Four games and four wins for a group of players that impressed and inspired last season, one that has been kept together and added to, while often looking good but not at their best. The results have been there, and the play itself will only get better from here.
“We’re not playing at our very best, Jürgen has admitted that and I agree,” was Roy Evans’ take on the start to the season, with the former manager taking time to talk to club’s official website this week. “We have not been brilliant but we’ve been a lot more compact.
“To win games on the days you don’t play so well, that’s a hint of saying you have a chance to win the Premier League because when we play well, which is most of the time, we win. And if we can add the results of the odd bad day to it, you’re going to be pretty close.”
Few have been more involved with Liverpool over the years than Evans, a Bootle native who graduated from the club’s academy in 1965 and then spent a decade toiling in the reserves, making nine total senior appearances for his boyhood club over the subsequent seasons.
During that time, though, he was identified as having promise as a potential future coach by Bill Shankly, and after he hung up his boots Evans spent the next two decades coaching under first Shankly, then Bob Paisley, Joe Fagan, Kenny Dalglish, and finally Grame Souness.
When Souness quit a Liverpool side adrift in mid-table following a shock defeat in the FA Cup, Evans got his turn, brining stability and the hints of revival to the club but never quite finding success—though many appreciated his late-90s sides for their exciting football.
“The World Cup takes a little bit of the legs out of some of your players but they’ll start to come into consideration and give us more on the day,” added the long-time club servant. “But as starts go, you can’t ask for anything more and I do think we can get better.
“I think we’ll be up there with always two, three, or four teams that have got a chance of winning it [this season]. Hopefully this is our year because I’ve waited long enough!”