The title race in the Premier League has been a one-sided battering up to this point in the season, with Liverpool quite literally cruising towards a phenomenal lead at the top of the table.
Securing the points
Roberto Firmino opened the scoring with less than 10 minutes remaining at the end of the first half, and while Liverpool looked comfortable, Tottenham certainly showed signs of life – especially in the second half. They may not have been able to get a point on the board, but there are positive signs to be taken.
Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp, as you can imagine, just can’t stop smiling.
“It was very hard-fought because we didn’t close the game down early. We should have been one or 2-0 up already when we scored. If you have a quality opponent like Tottenham and you don’t close the game they will come back. Allison makes things look easy. It is not what we would have wanted. It is intense, you lose the ball and you are facing one of the best counter-attacking sides. We had Robbo (Andy Robertson) free two or three times and he didn’t find a team-mate, so we didn’t help ourselves.”
“We needed Allison for that today. We had a few dips defensively. Some games he has not had a lot to do with us winning the ball high early. It is good but there is no other chance to win games than to defend well.”
Spurs boss Jose Mourinho clearly understands the task at hand in North London.
Effective as ever
“This is football. Sometimes you get more than you deserve. Sometimes you get less. This was an occasion when we got nothing when we deserved something. This is the best team in the world against a team in a difficult moment, with injuries, in a difficult part of the season. The boys were fantastic when we tried to change and create problems.”
“It is possible to talk about top four when you start the season on zero points. But it is hard to talk about it when you start at minus 12 (the number of points off the top four Spurs were when he took over).”
There’s still a long way to go over the course of the next few months, but it’s pretty difficult to see where and how Liverpool are going to mess this up now.
Perhaps we’re jinxing them by suggesting that, but it’s true. They’re playing such good football, and yet, it still feels as if they can go a step higher if they so desire.
Tottenham will face a battle to reach the top four, but this is the sort of ‘experiment’ that is going to last a while under Mourinho, so they need to give the Portuguese manager time to try and turn things around.