The Premier League is back and once again, Liverpool certainly does not want to end up in the same runners-up position for the second year in a row. After forfeiting the Premier League title last year by only one point, the Reds are off to a great start to avoid any draws or defeats in matches before the international break to avoid the same situation.
Jamie Carragher, an ex Liverpool defender, claims that neither Liverpool or Manchester City can afford to drop any points in the race for the Premier League title. Critics, pundits and fans alike are expecting the Reds and the Blues to compete once again at the top of the table this term.
“Any drop off now in a three or four-game period before the next international break, you can find yourself behind City, so every game is so vital. It almost feels like a draw is a defeat now if you’re Liverpool or City.” After the international break, Liverpool host Newcastle United, with City visiting Norwich City later in the day.
However, Liverpool may have gained a title boost in Man City defender Laporte being stretchered off. Aymeric Laporte was stretchered off the field in a clash against Brighton and this could significantly improve Liverpool’s chances at the title. The central defender was one of the reigning champions’ best players last season, proving to be the most consistent of Pep Guardiola’s defensive options.
The 25-year old went down after colliding with Brighton’s Adam Webster and was withdrawn on 35 minutes for Fernandinho, with the Frenchman receiving treatment to his knee. Although it isn’t morally right for Liverpool to see this as a positive development, the Reds could find that they benefit from Laporte’s absence, given the positive impact he often has for the Sky Blues.
All in all, both sides wish the defender a speedy recovery but from an objective point of view, it does appear to be a boost for the club. City are a dominant side, and any potential chink in their armour can prove to be beneficial to those looking to keep up with them in the Premier League title chase.
Liverpool are quite the dangerous side themselves, with or without chinks in Manchester City’s armour. Their attacking department which includes the best strikers such as Mohamed Salah, Roberto Firmino, and Sadio Mane proves that with such talented players, anything it possible.
It is Mo Salah who usually takes the most plaudits of Liverpool’s lethal attacking trident, understandable considering that he has 55 Premier League goals and two golden boots to show for his 76 league games for the Reds so far. However, it seems this year it is Sadio Mane who been Liverpool’s greatest attacking threat. The Senegalese star has notched 15 Premier League goals in 2019, the most in the division, and 20 in all competitions which is the same as Mo Salah (12) and Roberto Firmino (8) combined.