Liverpool endured their second Champions League loss of the season on November 6th as they suffered a disappointing 2-0 reverse at the hands of Red Star Belgrade. The Reds have struggled on the road in this competition over the last couple of years but they’ve looked imperious in the Premier League and Jurgen Klopp will be hoping that their Serbian disappointment doesn’t halt their domestic momentum. They remain unbeaten in the top flight so far and fans will be hoping that they can continue to avoid defeat during the second half of the campaign.
Source: Football Stuff via Twitter
The 4-1 victory over Cardiff at the end of October ensured that the club matched it’s best ever start to a Premier League season. It also saw the Merseyside outfit go top of the table, albeit for 48 hours. The Reds appear determined to make this year’s title race interesting with Klopp’s men keeping tabs on Champions, Manchester City.
Alexandre Lacazette’s late strike denied Liverpool an unlikely victory at the Emirates on November 3rd and the Frenchman’s accuracy also relegated them to third in the table and opened up the gap at the top to two points. Pep Guardiola’s men remain 4/11 favourites for back-to-back titles in the latest football betting markets but Liverpool offer some value at 9/2 whilst Chelsea will still fancy their chances under Maurizio Sarri at 10/1.
Crucially, Liverpool are yet to taste defeat in the top flight this campaign and they appear to have the squad depth to cope with the demanding fixture list which comes into force at the beginning of December. They’d suffered two defeats by this stage last season and had also unexpectedly dropped points against Watford, Newcastle and Burnley and they look significantly stronger this time around.
It hasn’t been the easiest run of fixtures for Reds with trips to Wembley, Stamford Bridge and Emirates yielding five points from a possible nine. They also held title rivals Manchester City to a goalless draw at Anfield on October 7th.
Source: MailOnlineSport via Twitter
Klopp showed his defensive nous in that game against Manchester City and he is clearly willing to sacrifice his natural attacking instincts in order to protect Liverpool’s unbeaten record and keep them in the title race.
Liverpool appeared to prioritise the Champions League last season but they fell agonisingly short of their target. Manchester City appear likely to go deep into the tournament this time around and that could play into the hands of their Premier League rivals. Pep is likely to focus on the European competition and there is the possibility that the former Bayern and Barcelona boss could be tempted to rest some of his players in domestic games during the early part of 2019.
Klopp’s men have already come through a number of difficult fixtures unscathed but there are plenty more tough tests awaiting them. There is the small matter of the Merseyside derby at the beginning of December and they host Jose Mourinho’s Manchester United just two weeks later. If they can overcome those two tremendous tests of character, then remaining unbeaten in the Premier League this season is a genuine possibility.