Tag Archives: Brendan Rodgers

It’s Great That Liverpool Didn’t Win the League

So on Sunday, after a fantastic season of twists and huge upsets, Manchester City wrapped up their second Premier League title in just three seasons. And, even as a Chelsea fan, I’m quite happy about that. Because despite being upset that The Blues let the title slip against the ‘small’ teams, Liverpool winning the EPL would have made our competition look weak. Here’s why…

Put simply, Liverpool are shocking at the back. Of course, I support ‘boring’ old Chelsea, so I would put strong defence before an exciting attack on most occasions. But the stats tell the story – Liverpool kept just 10 clean sheets all year compared to Manchester City’s 16 and Chelsea’s 18.

They even conceded 50 goals, nearly double that of Chelsea and 13 more than City. Even Southampton and Manchester United conceded less, and both also had more clean sheets than the Scousers. For god’s sake, Norwich had more clean sheets than Liverpool and they’ve been relegated.

ImagePhoto Credit: nydailynews.com

For context, no Premier League Champion between 2001-2012 has conceded more than 37 goals. And no champion ever has conceded Liverpool’s 50 (even when the league had 42 games).

That’s why it’s good Liverpool didn’t win the league, they would have made it look weak. A team that ships half a century of goals, and wins just two games against their top four rivals will never make good ambassadors of your competition. And talking about The Reds record against the top four…

POS

1

TEAM

Chelsea

P

6

W

5

D

1

L

0

CS

4

FtS

1

GF

13

GA

2

GD

+11

Pts

16

PPG

2.67

2 Manchester City 6 2 1 3 0 1 12 11 +1 7

1.17

3 Liverpool 6 2 0 4 0 2 10 11 -1 6

1.00

4 Arsenal 6 1 2 3 2 2 7 18 -11 5

0.83

Top Four 2013/2014 Head-to-Head. The less usual stats are clean sheets, failed-to-score and points per game.

The proof is in the pudding – Liverpool didn’t have enough against the big teams. Fine, their potent attack scored 10 goals in 6 big games, but 5 of those goals came in one match against Arsenal in February. City and Chelsea both scored more, and the Pensioners conceded an absurd nine fewer goals in these 6 games.

It comes down to this; Liverpool only scraped 6 points from these half-dozen games because they didn’t keep a single clean sheet , and these are the lost points that cost ‘Pool the title.

Most fans were quick to think that ‘sexy’ Liverpool winning the League would have shown the world the exciting brand of football that England can offer. But they fail to remember most overseas fans only see the big games, so they usually see Liverpool lose.

What’s more, how strong would the EPL look if The Reds, as champions, went to Real Madrid next year and got bulldozed? In my eyes that’s a very real possibility. I’ve respected and admired Brendan Rodgers for years, but if he wants to see domestic success over a 38-game season, he may just have to tone down his style.

I really enjoy watching the Red side of the Mersey play, and watching attractive football is a big draw for a lot of fans. But even more important is success. And success needs more than flashy style; It needs ‘big game’ nerves and an ability to win when not at your best i.e. grinding out a 1-0 win away from home. Liverpool will also need to re-adapt to being in the Champions League, and a plethora of strong squad players is an absolute necessity if they wan’t to keep up with fixtures and remain in the top four next season.

Liverpool may come back even stronger next year, and for the sake of the Premier League I hope they do, but for now it’s best that they remain an entertaining runner-up.

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