Yet another season of the Premier League has just ended with a new champion being crowned (how rare is that!) and Liverpool ending in 8th place (not so rare!). Once Liverpool changed their manager in October, it was always known that this season would not be where we would be competing at the top table and hence anything achieved would be a bonus.
Like any other season there were lot of good moments and an equal share of bad moments. Let us look at 5 of those important moments from this season.
9th Aug 2015: Stoke City 0 Liverpool 1
When the fixtures list was announced in June 2015, there was a collective groan around Merseyside when there was realisation that Liverpool would be returning to the Britannia Stadium in the opening fixture. The wounds of the 6-1 defeat were still being healed at that point of time, when it was known that the team would be returning to that very venue. It was not quite clear whether Brendan Rodgers indeed would be the man at the helm come August. Ultimately Rodgers was still in his job as Liverpool made the journey to Stoke.
Avoiding defeat against Stoke should never be the aim for Liverpool, but on that day most Liverpool fans would have accepted returning a point or worst case a scrappy loss. Liverpool ended up winning the game thanks to an audacious strike from Coutinho to return home with three points and salvaged pride.
We can watch that goal below in this link
21st Nov 2015: Manchester City 1 Liverpool 4
Liverpool under Klopp had shown encouraging signs in the 4 Premier League games prior to the game against City, with the victory over Stamford Bridge the biggest highlight. Liverpool had a poor away record against the big teams under Rodgers, and the victory against Chelsea was a solid beginning in turning around that unfavourable record. But the true test lay at the Etihad. The teams were coming off an international break, and hence the hope amongst the fans were high. But no one would have expected the virtuoso performance the team put in that day. Liverpool were on fire from the first whistle and scored three goals in the opening 31 minutes aided by the constant harassing and pressing of the City players. Philippe Coutinho and Firmino were unstoppable as Liverpool made a statement of intent.
Watch all the goals below
13th Dec 2015: Liverpool 2 West Bromwich Albion 2
Liverpool played West Brom at home after a not so encouraging couple of results in the Premier League and Europa League and Klopp was trying to avoid back to back league defeats for the first time in his Liverpool managerial career.
As is common in such games, Liverpool dominated the game but were trailing 1-2 to WBA when the opponents exploited yet another set-piece weakness in the 73rd minute. To make matters worse, Lovren was clattered by Gardner and hence had to be stretchered off. Liverpool in recent seasons usually folded up once they trailed and hence the hopes were receding when Lovren got injured. Klopp threw down the gauntlet by bringing in the hat-trick hero from Southampton, Origi for Lovren as Can moved into centre-back. Liverpool kept trying , and with Klopp egging the crowd late on, Anfield was rocking and Liverpool got the equalizer in the 95th minute. The post match events were defining of what is to come under Klopp. Klopp took his players near the Kop as the players and staff saluted the fans.
Opposition fans laughed at Liverpool for ‘celebrating’ a draw, but long time observers of Klopp in the Bundesliga were well too aware of what Klopp was doing.
Klopp was communicating to his players – You are playing for these fans, never stop trying
Klopp was communicating to the fans – They might not have won, they have their flaws, but they never gave up; keep backing them
Liverpool and Anfield was never the same. Liverpool kept snatching points when they were trailing while the Anfield atmosphere returned to their glory days.
Watch LFC Players salute the Kop below
23rd Jan 2016: Norwich 4 Liverpool 5
There were no words (perhaps no voice) left as Liverpool ended up on the right side of a nine-goal thriller at Carrow Road. Liverpool were down 3-1 at one point. THREE-ONE. Then Henderson scores right after their third goal and Firmino is in the right spot to turn in the cross from Lallana, as commentators continued to laugh all the way to the bank with the Sunday league defending at show from both teams.
Incredulously Liverpool take the lead as Martin continues the abject defending with a mad back pass which Milner slots home. The drama was not to end there as Basson scores a great goal to level the game at 4-4 as majority of Carrow Road goes bonkers. Liverpool attack again with their defender on loan, Caulker, inside the box. Post a bit of scrappiness, Lallana smashes the ball into the ground which balloons over their keeper to clinch the tie. The celebration of Lallana and Klopp (with a cameo punch from Benteke) will be talked about for some time.
Watch all the goals from the mad game here
20th Mar 2016: Southampton 3 Liverpool 2
This game summed up the adage that Football is a game of two halves. Games of two extreme halves if one could add. Liverpool were in the drivers seat in the first half with 2 excellent goals in the first half and with 3 points literally in the bag.
Then Liverpool do what Liverpool does best. The un-explainable things. Moments of buffoonery. Liverpool constantly get weaker with their substitutions and Skrtel has one of his worst stinkers ever as Southampton equalise and then go on to score a winner and claim all three points. The game laid the problems at hand for Klopp as Liverpool dropped 19 points from winning positions in the league this season.
The only good thing might be that we might never see Skrtel playing for Liverpool again. Might sound harsh, but one cannot dispute the arguments behind it.