Can Liverpool Turn Luck into Fortune?
In one sense, Liverpool have had a perfect start to their season. Six points from two Premier League games and successful passage into the next stage of the Champions League is the best they could have accomplished to date. They’ve been almost-perfect at the back, conceding just one goal in 390 minutes of football.
This, of course, is painting a picture so pretty that it would make Water Lillies look like a photo of horse dung.
Liverpool have yet to face anything approaching the top class teams they’ll have to overcome if they’re to have a truely successful season. They have yet to score a goal in the first 80 minutes of any match. They have yet to win a game by more than a single goal.
If Liverpool are to continue to be lucky, rather than good, then their season is surely about to fall badly off the rails. Their upcoming Premier League fixtures involve a trip to Villa Park and a visit from Manchester United. They are also just three weeks away from the group stage of the Champions League. Their recent success in this competition means they will be the top seed in their group, but they can still expect to face much sterner opposition than Standard Liege.
And yet, a glorious opportunity awaits if they can kick their season out of first gear. Another two Premier League wins would see them eight points clear of Manchester United and looking down on every other team apart from, most likely, Chelsea. A kind draw from Mr Platini would pit them against Eindhoven, Basel and, I kid you not, Anorthosis Famagusta (who, interestingly enough, are managed by former Newcastle player Timur Ketsbaia).
So which way now for Liverpool?