That was old school.
Take a trip down memory lane. True, the old school may have been knocked down years ago but you can still check it out in the record books.
There you’ll see dozens of matches at Anfield that were 0-0 with about 10 or 15 minutes left to go.
Then bam: two or maybe even three late goals as the trembling opposition — clinging to their point like a catalogue model clings to a League One footballer — eventually succumbs to the inevitable.
A lad behind me on the Kop grumbled after an hour: “We’ve just got to win this; otherwise they’ll all be coming here and doing it.”
“It” being a blanket defence and everybody back. That ship has sailed, I’m afraid. Southampton last week, Sunderland this, even United barely debarked from their parked bus.
That’s all very nice for the ego but it’s getting a bit nervy to watch. The Coutinho injury won’t help either.
There’d been a distinct lack of creativity even before he got stretchered off. Lallana’s missing and the selection of both Can and Wijnaldum leads to a duplication of rather sweaty water carrying. Losing Coutinho will be a real hammer blow.
Fact is Klopp’s got nobody else. It led to an enormous amount of huff and puff, albeit it the wheezy bronchial kind rather than the hurricane of weeks before.
Suddenly all these little pigs’ straw houses are staying upright and that inevitably leads to Anfield frustration, long spells of silence punctured by spoilt-brat grumbling.
Enter Herr Klopp with his traditional cheerleader bit, pompoms optional. He goes mad, the crowd goes mad — then Joel Matip goes mad and kicks the ball out for a Sunderland corner. That went well, then.
It still wasn’t the worst mistake. The goal kick from Karius that went out for a corner… I’m still processing it now. Was he trying to get advance royalties from those awful “football’s greatest gaffes” videos? Who the hell knows.
I’m sure I’ve never seen that before but ageing does tend to pickle the brain. In the pub beforehand two extremely experienced Red travellers couldn’t even remember John Aldridge scoring in an FA Cup final.
How can we be expected to remember goal kicks? But back to Klopp’s remonstrations. All the crowd can really do is urge players to greater efforts.
The guile and cunning necessary to unlock packed defences isn’t something that can be yowled into existence.
The impatience isn’t new, of course. We’re always in danger of forgetting where we were a year ago before things improved. It happened to Evans, Houllier, Benitez, and Rodgers. I’d be amazed if it didn’t happen again.
It took until the match after Christmas last season to collect the 30 points we’ve got right now. Appreciate it.
Origi finally made the breakthrough which I suppose was obvious in coming. You can’t do what Sunderland did, just sitting there and offering up nothing.
It’s a bit different standing there watching it at the time, of course. Every Liverpool shot that trickled wide or into the goalie’s grateful belly sent the blood pressure up a notch.
The cliché says; one of those days. Thankfully it wasn’t, but the fear of all clubs trying this now is justified. We’ll just have to acclimatise.
It was uplifting to see the Reds can scrap as well as entertain. The ‘fair weather team’ accusations were just lying on the shelf, waiting to be dusted off and used by a hundred dreary, leering journalists. Sorry about us, as the youth say.
There was a vague glimmer of hope Tottenham would do us a favour at Chelsea and keep us top, but they’re being very Tottenham at the moment. Chelsea are being Chelsea, but more so.
No matter. The reaction to Origi’s goal was as wild as anything seen all season. It was fully justified.
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