Liverpool have shown a resolve this season that hadn’t been present in other seasons towards winning the Premier League title. Although, they have been so close to winning the Premier League last season, finishing just one point behind Manchester City, their style of play had not been as tight as it is right now.
Liverpool played arch-rival, Manchester City over the weekend in a match that had ended 3-1 in their favor and that has helped Liverpool establish an eight-point lead over Leicester City and Chelsea who occupy second and third positions respectively and nine points lead over defending champions, Manchester City.
The match against Manchester City is the continuation of a long-time rivalry that has built between Jurgen Klopp and Pep Guardiola and is now passing to the players as well. Although we can’t liken it to the Arsenal-Manchester United rivalry just yet, we might see it develop into that in the nearest future.
This season, Liverpool has played 12 Premier League matches, winning 11 with just one draw. Through their matches this season, there is a pattern and it is easy to spot for anyone watching the match attentively.
Liverpool have been able to utilize their full-backs to contribute to attacks and it is done in a fascinating way that has posed to be dangerous against opponents.
It is safe to say there is no link-up play like the one we see from Liverpool’s full-backs, Trent Alexander-Arnold and Robertson. These two have become synced that it is beautiful to watch them in a classy exchange of balls that leads to goals.
The perfect skip along an undisturbed stream. We have watched it happen a lot in games and the switch is something worthy of praise. Something other clubs need to be scared of because of the effectiveness and how it destabilizes the opponent’s defense.
Amazingly, we have seen on a couple of occasions where the two full-backs have shown a variation of the classic. The right-footed Alexander-Arnold sweeping over into space the marauding Robertson was running into. It has always looked magical, the ball traveling bullet-like in its trajectory, to the instep of the other.
It is much more than simply a pretty pass to show off technique and vision. It stretches the play, moves the direction of travel from left to right, from right to left. It advances the play and puts Liverpool on the front foot.
This not-so-secret partnership and linkup play has added a new depth to the Liverpool attack, making it somewhat more formidable than it was before.
It is easy to decide that moving the ball from one flank to the other keeps players moving and it is no coincidence that opponents get worked out trying to play Liverpool. Often times, we have seen opponents go down with cramps while playing against Liverpool and even concede late goals. This will be because Liverpool keeps using the full length of the pitch, switching from one flank to the other effectively and with precision.
Liverpool are utilizing their full-backs like no other at the moment and we can see the result of that. It is helping them forge forward in the race for the Premier League title and it has even helped them establish a comfortable lead over others.