Oh Captain, My Captain
Always have to do it the hard way don’t they? We can’t help but love them though. What a team. What a group of lads. I think we can put this clicking business to bed now. The Reds are back and ready to attack this season with a fully-fledged assault on all fronts. They won a key battle today. The performance was similar to last season’s exploits, with the front three looking as dangerous as ever creating chance after chance after chance. But what we lacked in ruthlessness, we made up for in control, solidity, bravery, and sheer fight.
Speaking of which, the captain then, was my man of the match. There were a lot of moans and groans after the midfield was announced before the game. There’s not enough creativity with those three apparently. It seems a lot of Liverpool fans have short memories. For the biggest of games, this remains Klopp’s first choice midfield and they showed exactly why tonight. Henderson was everywhere. His intent and willingness were clear very early on with his quick and accurate passing that I’ve come so accustomed to from him. I see his style of passing as his trademark. It’s very underrated, like the player himself. He drills the ball at his target with power and accuracy. It’s passing with information. He’s telling Salah or Mane or Firmino what to do with his pass. He zips it on Salah’s left when he’s got his man pinned, which allows him to roll his man and go. Hendo gives it to feet when he wants the striker to hold the ball up and allow others to catch up with play.
During the second half in particular he was excellent at this. Also, the timing of his tackling and interceptions was superb. He allowed us to control the game for large parts by winning the ball back in central areas and giving the team a base to spring from which set the front 3 away in space on literally countless occasions. His ability to read the play and recover possession is exceptional. Every loose ball, he was there. I think he’s a great player, despite what large sections of our fanbase believe and say. While Alisson and Van Dijk, perhaps even Salah will be given the title of ‘hero’ (deservedly so) for contributing in key areas of the pitch, Henderson gets my adulation tonight. A real captain’s performance, he loves a big game.
As for the Mighty Boys in Red, the ‘Football Gods’ were looking down on them tonight as their lack of a clinical edge in front of goal was’nt painfully punished. We march on, survivors of the group of death. To be top of the EPL table at this stage along with navigating a group of such difficulty is an incredible achievement for Jurgen and his men. The scenes at the end were magnificent to see, everyone embracing each other having cleared this hurdle together. May this morale boost push us on to bigger and better things this season.
Rejoice Reds, your Thursday evenings are free!