Vital Football

Latest Liverpool FC News

Liverpool: Clear As Day 2013-14 Issue 8

Liverpool: Clear As Day 2013-14 Issue 8

The eighth instalment of Vital Liverpool's latest serialising of editor Gavin John Day's acclaimed Clear As Day football column...

During the course of the past season Vital Liverpool editor Gavin John Day has continued to pen his monthly Clear As Day column for LFC fanzine Anfield Roar.

With the campaign now over we are delighted to be able to share these articles with you and will be publishing the series at regular intervals over the coming weeks.

In this instalment, the eighth Clear As Day of the 2013-14 season, Gavin finally starts to get carried away by title talk but is nervous about the defence undermining such ambitions.



Clear As Day 2013-14 #8
Originally published: March 2014

As a Liverpool fan, and someone who writes extensively about the club, it has become increasingly difficult to avoid the big question; can we win the title?

Up until the past two games I have always replied with a categorical 'no' but even I must confess that I am slowly becoming a believer.

I'm not saying it will happen, but we do have one hell of a chance!

As the old cliché goes, goals win games and as long as we continue to score at our current rate it is impossible to rule out a first triumph for 24 years.

Clearly Chelsea and Manchester City remain highly-fancied as a result of their extensive and expensively assembled squads, not to mention the fact that they both have recent experience of being crowned champions.

However, our back-to-back 3-0 away victories over Southampton and Manchester United have ratified the possibility of a long overdue reunion between the league trophy and Anfield.

I've always been someone who feels that a reliable defence is crucial to winning titles and for large spells of 2013-14 this area of our game looked likely to undermine our challenge.

Not so at St Mary's and Old Trafford.

Recording two consecutive clean sheets at such challenging venues - places where we have terrible recent records - is incredibly encouraging.

In the previous seven games, by contrast, we had managed just one shutout and conceded on 12 occasions. At 35 goals against, we have let in more than anyone else in the top seven except Tottenham Hotspur.

It came as little surprise to me that only once in the last thirteen years have the Premier League champions conceded in excess of 40 goals during a season; United last year (43).

Getting the balance between attack and defence right has always been a tricky juggling act. Plenty of teams that should have won a league title, such as Kevin Keegan's Newcastle United of the mid-1990s, failed as a consequence, at least in part, of not being able to do so.

So far nothing has hindered Liverpool's scoring potency and ridiculously Luis Suarez and Daniel Sturridge's combined total of 43 goals is more than 13 whole top flight teams.

Our current overall tally of 76 goals is more than any other Premier League side in the competition's history at this stage of a campaign.

It is also a figure which surpasses our full-season totals in every previous year, since the top flight restructured in 1992, except one; 2008-09.

That particular season, when Rafa Benitez's men netted on 77 occasions, represents the only other time the league title has looked even remotely like coming home in recent times.

Ultimately, despite only losing two games, Benitez's side had to content themselves with finishing as runners-up, primarily as a result of drawing too many games (11 including seven at home).

Liverpool finished the season on 86 points, a figure which would have seen us crowned champions in 2010-11, and such an amount is almost certainly going to be enough to win it again this time around.

With 62 on the board and nine games to go, we can reach a maximum of 89. Should we win all our games then only City can mathematically amass more.

Such a winning run is unlikely of course but just the fact it is being discussed shows how far we have come in such a short space of time.

The trip to Cardiff City this weekend will be our third consecutive fixture on the road and another competent, all-round display will be required to keep the momentum going.

Like most supporters, a return to the Champions League was my primary ambition at the start of the season and, even when top at Christmas, I didn't expect anything more than perhaps third.

It could be that we endure an end of season slump but if such solidity at the back can continue then I really can see Brendan Rodgers delivering the one prize we all want.

It would be a phenomenal achievement if the previously unproven Northern Irishman manages to do so and, in the process, join a fabled list of Kenny Dalglish, Joe Fagan, Bob Paisley, Bill Shankly, George Kay, Matt McQueen, David Ashworth and Tom Watson.



Liverpool fanzine Anfield Roar is a FREE monthly publication bringing LFC fans a plethora of news, views and opinion. Click here to find out more and to subscribe...



Previous articles in this series
2013-14
Clear As Day Issue 1
Clear As Day Issue 2
Clear As Day Issue 3
Clear As Day Issue 4
Clear As Day Issue 5
Clear As Day Issue 6
Clear As Day Issue 7

2012-13
Clear As Day Issue 1
Clear As Day Issue 2
Clear As Day Issue 3
Clear As Day Issue 4
Clear As Day Issue 5
Clear As Day Issue 6
Clear As Day Issue 7
Clear As Day Issue 8
Clear As Day Issue 9

Follow Gavin on Twitter @superbag

Not a Vital Liverpool member? It's 100% free to join & only takes a few moments to sign up. Click here to become a member or alternatively simply sign in using Social Media!



Click here to join in the debate on the club forum.

Writer:Gavin Kelley-Day
Date:Wednesday July 23 2014
Time: 6:05PM

Login to post a comment

Best of Vital Network

Recent Liverpool Articles

2016/17 Golden Boot Battle (27/3/17)

The final international break of the Premier League 2016/17 season ticks on by and this year could see a record number of players break the 20 goal mark.

Liverpool: International Round-Up (25/03/2017)

Part one of our latest update on how Liverpool players have performed for their countries at senior international level in recent days

Whose Won The Most Points So Far

Which player has won your side the most points so far in the Premier League campaign of 2016/17?

Vote For The March Awards - 2016/17

The Premier League have now opened voting for the Manager, Player and Goal of the Month awards for March.

Archived Vital Liverpool Articles

Vital Liverpool articles from

Site Journalists

Gavin Kelley-Day
Editor email
Profile

Current Poll (see more polls)

Who Was MOTM vs. Man City (Away)?
Suggested By: Editor
Simon Mignolet2%
Nathaniel Clyne0%
Joel Matip0%
Ragnar Klavan0%
James Milner12%
Emre Can68%
Georginio Wijnaldum18%
Adam Lallana0%
Philippe Coutinho0%
Sadio Mane0%
Roberto Firmino0%
Divock Origi (sub)0%
Lucas Leiva (sub)0%
ScoopDragon Premier League Network Sites

League Table

# Team P W D L Pts. GD
1 Chelsea 28 22 3 3 69 38
2 Spurs 28 17 8 3 59 34
3 Man City 28 17 6 5 57 24
4 Liverpool 29 16 8 5 56 25
5 Man Utd 27 14 10 3 52 19
6 Arsenal 27 15 5 7 50 22
7 Everton 29 14 8 7 50 21
8 WBA 29 12 7 10 43 1
9 Stoke 29 9 9 11 36 -9
10 Southampton 27 9 6 12 33 -3
11 AFC Bournemouth 29 9 6 14 33 -12
12 West Ham 29 9 6 14 33 -12
13 Burnley 29 9 5 15 32 -11
14 Watford 28 8 7 13 31 -15
15 Leicester City 28 8 6 14 30 -14
16 Crystal Palace 28 8 4 16 28 -10
17 Swansea 29 8 3 18 27 -27
18 Hull City 29 6 6 17 24 -32
19 Middlesbrough 28 4 10 14 22 -13
20 Sunderland 28 5 5 18 20 -26
Write for Vital Football
Latest F1 News
Latest Vital Boxing News
The Vital Football Members League

Recent Liverpool Results (view all)

Liverpool Fixtures (view all)

Apr 1 2017 12:30PM : Everton (H)
Barclays Premier League
Apr 5 2017 8:00PM : AFC Bournemouth (H)
Barclays Premier League
Apr 8 2017 3:00PM : Stoke City (a)
Barclays Premier League
Apr 16 2017 1:30PM : West Bromwich Albion (a)
Barclays Premier League
Apr 23 2017 4:30PM : Crystal Palace (H)
Barclays Premier League
May 1 2017 8:00PM : Watford (a)
Barclays Premier League

Vital Members League Table

RankNamePoints
1.BigRed834
Vital Football Comment