Jurgen Klopp has cemented his name into the Liverpool history books delivering the Reds their first ever Premier League trophy after a long 30-year drought. The now 19-time champions tore through the season in tremendous fashion, putting team after team to the sword en-route to a 99-point haul.
These are the five key moments which aided Liverpool in winning the Premier League trophy.
Norwich Stun City
Liverpool’s maiden title win in three decades is entirely their doing, but there were fillips along the way that were out of their hands. Candidly, Manchester City’s autumnal defeats – in addition to Liverpool’s unstoppable winning streak – killed the title race before it could even unfold.
The Citizens, as Reds fans will doubtless remember, won their final 14 games of the 2018/19 campaign. Yet, the psychological pressure affecting them, which came from knowing that Liverpool were a relentless force of nature, came to a head as early as the second match week.
In week two, City could only draw 2-2 against Tottenham after a late goal from Gabriel Jesus was ruled out by VAR. However, the title race lurched further in Liverpool’s favour after City’s shock 3-2 defeat at Carrow Road on 14 September, with Teemu Pukki netting the winner.
City’s 2-0 home defeat to Wolves in October was also a major flashpoint in the so-called ‘title race’ of 2019/20.
Reds Negotiate Stamford Bridge Test
Just a week after City’s major slip at Norwich, Liverpool would face their toughest test of the season on paper. They travelled as favourites nonetheless, entering the round with the joint-best defence in the league (0.8 goals conceded per match on average) and boasting 14 straight league wins dating back to March.
Liverpool had also been winning at half-time & full-time in all of their league matches to that point, but a record of just two wins from their last seven league clashes with Chelsea tempered the optimism. In the end, Liverpool ran out 2-1 winners in a combative encounter, making a major statement in bringing down one of their peers in the expected top six.
Challengers Beat Champions
By the eve of their November clash with Man City, Liverpool were level with City at the top of the spread betting odds title outrights market. Even so, the doubters still had some considerable ammunition against the Reds.
Liverpool had conceded the opener within ten minutes in two of their previous three league games on home turf. Defensive composure was again in short supply, with both teams scoring in eight straight competitive matches. All eight of those games had also produced goals in both halves, giving the City game a further air of unpredictability.
Realistically, the title race was as good as over by the final whistle, as Liverpool destroyed City 3-1 with a glorious cavalry charge, going nine points clear on a day the nation remembered the fallen of the Great War. It was a result seen as universally decisive, making the remainder of the season a mere question as to how many records Liverpool could break.
No Travel Sickness For World Champions
With Man City out of the picture by Christmas, the task of ruining the Reds title hopes surprisingly fell to Leicester City. They hosted Liverpool on Boxing Day, in the hope of preventing the Reds from going 13 points clear with a game in hand. Given that Liverpool had won the FIFA Club World cup in Qatar just days previously, Leicester undoubtedly fancied their chances of felling the fatigued champions-elect.
Very quickly, it was apparent that Liverpool were in no mood for excuses, and an evenly-fought first half saw the Reds go in 1-0 up at the break. There was still the expectation that Leicester would come back, and that Liverpool simply had to wane at some point. In true Klopp fashion, the exact opposite happened, with a three-goal salvo beyond the 70th minute – through a James Milner penalty, which was followed by goals from Roberto Firmino (scorer of a brace that day) and Trent Alexander-Arnold.
A 96.2% Win-Rate by Late February
The sight of a team winning 26 of its first 27 Premier League matches and losing none is unprecedented. On current evidence, only Liverpool themselves can beat the record they set in February, and the 26th league win of 2019/20 was an unexpectedly nail-biting one.
It came via a 3-2 scoreline over West Ham at a packed Anfield under Monday night lights. After the match, Liverpool’s supremacy was there for all to see, with the victory over West Ham putting them on an 18-match winning streak in the league.
Liverpool would have set a new PL-era record for consecutive wins, had they vanquished Watford in the very next game. By the same point, they had also netted the opening goal in 16 straight league fixtures, whilst scoring an impressive 12 goals within the first 30 minutes across those 16 games.
Furthermore, they had won with a clean sheet in ten of their preceding 12 league matches, conceding a league-low 0.63 goals per match, and leading at half-time in 70.37% of their league games.
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