The final whistle blew amongst party cries of ‘Were gonna win the League’ and ‘Poetry in Motion’ as Liverpool saw off a very spirited Southamption side at St. Marys. The party had been planned ever since Liverpool last challenged for the title, but now it’s in full swing, and the guests have well and truly arrived.
As Liverpool’s best season in five years nears its completion, questions are being asked as to whether this is the start of a new era for the club, or whether it’s just the club taking advantage of a series of managerial changes amongst their top four rivals.
Sitting comfortably in the top four, few can deny the Reds deserve their current placing in the Premier League, as excitement grows on Merseyside at the prospect of hearing the famous Champions League theme under the floodlights at Anfield.
After 4 mediocre seasons without Champions League football, Brendan Rodgers’s men have stepped up a level quite dramatically, the last two seasons they finished 7th and 8th, it would be, as Brendan Rodgers has repeated on numerous occasions, ‘unprecedented’ for the club to finish this campaign as Premier League champions.
We’re at that stage in the season where we all look back at the pivotal moments of the season, whether that’s Liverpool’s 5-0 victory over Tottenham or their more recently demolitions over Arsenal and Everton and questions that were being asked of Liverpool are finally being answered.
Are Liverpool the most exciting side to watch in the Premier League this season? Arguably, after all, they are the top scorers. Do they host the Premier League’s best strike force? Without a doubt. Can Liverpool’s class of 2014 improve further? You better believe it.
Many of Liverpool’s stars of the season are yet to reach their prime. Jordan Henderson, once maligned now revered in a red shirt, is only 23 and is one of the Premier League’s, and England’s most exciting youngsters. Raheem Sterling has the world at his feet and despite being at the raw age of 19, is already being described as England’s best winger, a claim you just can’t deny.
Then there’s the small matter of the two strikers Liverpool have. Sturridge and Suarez. Sturridge, who is now seen as England’s number one striker above £300k a week Wayne Rooney, is only 24 years of age, can he, like his partner in crime become one of the best strikers in the world? Of course he can, he’s at the right club to do so.
Luis Suarez, who is undoubtedly the form player in the world at this moment in time, has only just turned 26, still a year away from when strikers reach their ‘prime’. After a turbulent summer few could predict the season the Uruguayan has had. Would Liverpool be in this position without him? You have to say no, the Premier League’s top scorer and assist maker is invaluable, the longer he stays on L4, the better the chance Liverpool have of building a Shankly-like dynasty.
As well as the players, you have the manager. Without question, Brendan Rodgers is, and has been, the Premier League Manager of the Year. There was a lot of scepticism about the Ulsterman after a turbulent first 6 months, at such a young age, there were murmurs the ‘boy’ was out of his depth. Once the summer transfer window closed, the boy became the man, and that man has given the Kop faithful a new lease of life.
He’s a man with words, a man of integrity and comparisons are being drawn with a certain Mr Bill Shankly, who spearheaded Liverpool’s most successful period in their history. It’s too early to suggest Rodgers can enjoy a similar reign at the club to that of Shankly, his successor ‘Sir’ Bob Paisley or (whisper it quietly) Sir Alex Ferguson, but the signs are there.
Of course, due to the disappointing nature of the majority of Liverpool’s recent years, the attitude of fans remains that of hope not expectation, but if ever there was an opportunity for Liverpool to return to Europe’s big table this was it. As Tottenham and Manchester United have undergone dramatic cosmetic surgery, Liverpool have woken up from a four year slumber and they are only just getting started.
Liverpool’s famous anthem You’ll Never Walk Alone claims ‘At the end of a storm, there’s a golden sky’and after recovering from the clubs darkest days, whether they win the league or not, the Liverpool fans can bask in the glory of their season, and most importantly, bring in the new sun that's rising over Anfield.