Are Liverpool Really Closing the Gap to Manchester United?

Liverpool would have gained many admirers with their gutsy and determined display against Manchester United despite a 2-1 defeat at Old Trafford.

Liverpool went into the match with a far inferior team in terms of age and quality but they controlled the tempo of the match well. It was an efficient away display which may have a knock on effect for their odds to win other competitions such as Europa League betting.

They managed to pin United inside their own half of the pitch for the final stages of the match and really should have grabbed a late equaliser for a deserved point.

Liverpool are currently in eighth place, nine points away from the Champions League places. They should comfortably secure Europa League football again for the 2013/2014 season but the Champions League looks a little too distant.

The defeat leaves Liverpool 24 points behind United in the title race but the gap in quality is deceiving according to Liverpool’s boss Brendan Rodgers, who rightly points out that Liverpool controlled both of their defeats to United this season.

“We are not 24 points behind in terms of quality. The points difference is due to the squad and once we close the gaps in the squad in the coming windows, I have great faith we will be able to challenge,” said Rodgers after the match.

Whether Liverpool can challenge for the Premier League title over the next few seasons is a different question entirely.

The first thing the club should be aiming for is getting back into the Champions League which is difficult with the likes of Arsenal, Tottenham and Everton all in the mix with the same ambition.

However, Liverpool should be confident because there is clear evidence that the manager has a clear vision, clear tactics and only wants the right personnel who will drive the club forward.

Combine this with the sound financial position which Liverpool should be in over the next few seasons and they will stand a chance of attracting some of the biggest names in the game, which will no doubt improve their chances of once again winning a league title.

39 thoughts on “Are Liverpool Really Closing the Gap to Manchester United?”

  1. A deserved point? Are you joking or did you not watch the game? I think it’s safe to say that United could have been 3 up by half. Sturridge helped a bit but this game was never in doubt.

  2. “We are not 24 points behind in terms of quality. The points difference is due to the squad…”

    How does that statement begin to make sense?

    West Brom are ahead of Liverpool, Swansea are one point behind them. To say they will finish in a Europa League spot comfortably is ignoring the quality of the other teams.

  3. Yup. As a diehard Liverpool fan, I sadly have to agree with the other comments.

    While LFC had a much better 2nd half against United, BR clearly got the starting tactics and team selection wrong. While Liverpool wil certainly be contending for CL, Europa league and even the title in years to come, this season it would be an enormous achievement to qualify for Europa league.

    When Liverpool learn to manage their transfer budget and sign good players then they may have a chance.

    Brendan Rodgers is off to almost as poor of a start as Kenny with Assaida (out on loan) Sahin (loan cancelled), Borini (who doesn’t look like he has the quality) and Allen (who looked awful at times hardly justifying his 17M price). Sturridge looks a decent signing though.

    The issue with this season and BR is that when he came in as manager, his first goal was to to “get the band back together”. Problem is he was talking about Stryper and not the Beatles. Immediately tried to sign former Swans with the goal of recreating Swansea at Anfield. A little to provincial for my tastes.

    The gap is not really closing but its not getting any bigger. PL titles are won with consistency over 38 games. Sure at time LFC look good but it needs to be more and more often.

    24 point gap about right. It will get better but not this season.

    1. Sturridge may come good. But it’s not a good sign when two of the teams you are trying to catch found him surplus to requirements.

      Just sayin.

  4. Yes Brendan we all know next season is your year. Problem is Stevie starfish will be another year older and a step closer to retirement and Suarez will have another season without Champions league football. While the owners might say all the right things this season you can bet they expect a top 4 Finnish next season.

    Can anyone actually see Liverpool winning the the league in the next 10 years. It’s not a 2-3 team league anymore so even if one team has a bad season there is still 4 or 5 teams better equipped than Liverpool to win the league. Until the owners put some serious money into the team they are just going to fall further behind each season while smaller better run clubs like Swansea continue to get stronger.

  5. look at all the loosers who have commented above, pretending to be from manchester lol probably from norfolk or bristol. do us a favour and comment on your own articles about liverpool, wish you lot where like alex ferguson and never looked us up, coz your trolling is sad, just shows you have no friends

  6. Liverpool are no closer to United now than they were under Daglish. Liverpool’s extremely poor signings and their hiring of Rodgers is the main reason.

    How many top clubs would have hired a manager with only one year EPL experience and who didn’t win anything at Swansea? Yes, he got them promoted but so have a lot of other managers who did the same for their clubs.

    While Liverpool continue to buy average talent for a lot of money the other clubs buy better talent for less money (like Swansea)or far superior talent (Mata, Silva, Oscar, RVP, etc) for more money which is well-spent because these players have lasting quality. By the time Liverpool get their act together after Rodgers’ learning curve is over the other clubs will be further away to catch. I can see Liverpool winning a trophy or two and maybe getting into the CL once in a while but I cannot see them becoming a perennial top 4 side anytime soon, not with the model the owners have instituted.

    1. I don’t think Rodgers is necessarily a problem its more the resources he’s working with. Lets face it they where never going to get a top class established manager with all the problems they had so Rodgers wasn’t a bad choice.

      Average players and owners who don’t understand how football works are the two biggest things standing in the way of Liverpool becoming a decent team again. If only king Kenny hasn’t wasted 100m on signings. Rodgers could have brought in 2-3 top players AND some quality squad players if he had that 100m available now.

      1. I think Rodgers is part of the problem. Look at the players he has signed, Allen for 15 million, Borini for 10 million, to name a couple. How many of the other CL-aspiring teams would have bought these players? Expecting them to come good eventually is a dicey proposition. Better to buy established players, young or old, as you know what you’re getting. They may cost more but in the long run they are worth it.

  7. Death by a million passes doesn’t really do it for me if it’s all sideways and backwards on your own half. Possession is more important than goals may be a made up statement but it wouldn’t surprise if the mantra was pinned up somewhere at Melwood by Brentan.

  8. have not beat a top ten side this season enough said.NO not getting closer to the top sides wake up and smell the coffee your side is not good.

      1. Forest haven’t had £30m to spunk on Henderson and Allen though have they? Surely they’d be challenging for top 4 at least otherwise.

      2. you are correct but you know what the question was is liverpool any better not the status of Forest.if it makes you feel better insulting my side knock yourself out but you know what your side has spent a hell of a lot more money and they still suck.keep drinking the kool-aid and fall further behind the top four.

        1. Only replied because you seem to comment negatively on any article regarding Liverpool. It seemed a bit ironic to me that a guy who supports a club in the Championship would deride Liverpool as not good.

          I’ve been as critical of Liverpool’s management and transfers as anybody. And I’ve never suggested the club is even close to competing for the title any time soon.

  9. I think there’s a pretty decent gulf in quality between the two. For me, it was summed up in one play towards the end of the game when Welbeck won a 50/50 ball from Sturridge, took it all the way to the other end with Sturridge yanking and pulling at him and created an opportunity for himself (only to fumble it away out of play). But… I mean……that’s United’s 4th string striker who is having a hard time getting games vs. Liverpool’s big transfer signing. Would Sturridge even play for United?

      1. Many current LFC players could make the first XI of United. Agger, Gerrard, Reina, Lucas, Suarez, and Sturridge all could and here’s why. United is not about the talent levels of the individual players, rather what Ferguson gets out of players. Ferguson’s genius is getting more out players than anyone else.

  10. The gospel according to Brendan Rodgers. All he needs is a pointy hat, a gold cape and rod then start crossing everybody.

  11. It’s stupid to judge Rodgers after half a season. If he is to lead Liverpool back to the promised land then it’s going to take time. It took Ferguson 7 years to win the title. Rodgers will never get that long unless he can show some progress e.g. a FA cup, progress in the Europa.

    20 decent minutes after going 2-0 down against your hated rivals is not good. Yesterday was a routine 3 points for United. If Liverpool are ever going to be anything under Rodgers, they need to make United a lot more uncomfortable than they did yesterday. The table doesn’t lie.

    1. I would agree with your first point on not judging Rodgers just yet since it is a re-building year and a “project.” However, the problem is that he continues to make comments that cause others to judge him. If he would sit back and build the squad without attempting to get involved in Premier League mind games then perhaps people could let it go. Instead he makes comments about aiming for a top 2 finish and his even more bizarre comments on Sunday. There’s plenty more that could be said of Rodgers.

      1. Good points. Rodgers could do more to keep a low profile and get on with the job. He should go for a beer with Moyes over at Everton to see how it’s done. But he cannot totally stay under the radar. He’s the manager of Liverpool, not Villa, and that comes with high expectations.

      2. Totally agree. I wish Brendan would shut up. He can comment when the club he manages actually beats Man City, Man United, and Everton, not when he thinks they deserved a point.

    2. It took Ferguson 7 years at a time when all the clubs were playing by the same rules, building over time. Oh, and Ferguson had won a few titles and trophies while managing in Scotland.

      Rodgers doesn’t have the same CV as Ferguson did when he came to the EPL. Today, it is almsot impossible to build a club over many years to challenge for the title because some clubs spend a lot of money to stay at the top. They have the resources to continue to spend big in buying quality players. Does anyone actually believe that Liverpool have the resources to compete with City, United or Chelsea? And when Liverpool have spent it has been done very poorly.

      1. The ominous signs are there that Rodgers doesn’t have a clue in the transfer market. Couple that with his habit of playing players out of position like Johnson at left back and I suspect the project will be over before too long. Liverpool are never linked with big names anymore and even Newcastle seem to have a better scouting network. Look at how much Swansea have improved since he left. Laudrup is arguably a better fit at Anfield and given his pedigree could attract better quality players.

  12. LoL….. This isn’t the first time Rodgers has said something bizarre is it. Not beating a side in the top 10 is pretty compelling evidence that he is wrong. Almost’s should’ves & if’s mean nothing.

    He is clearly a good coach, but as a manager/head coach/leader results matter at some point, making constant contradictory statements from; if we finish 8th It’ll be a great season, to, we could finish second & we are not that far behind the top teams. It’s erratic & sounds a little desperate, Rodgers is perhaps showing signs the pressures of being at a club with expectations getting to him?

    All it takes is a run of losses to change & for the pressure to increase. I am quiet grateful that Spurs didn’t go for Rodgers, AVB has much a belief in a philosophy of play as Rodgers but I think AVB understands transition / change better esp after the CPFC (chelski pantomime football club) period.

    When LFC finish 12 (or lower) what will be the expectations for next year? Top 4? LFC are 2-3 years away from Everton levels let alone a top 4 spot, will Rodgers even be at LFC that long without top 4 or a trophy of any sort? How many seasons of non top four does he have? What is the high point for next year 6?

  13. He needs time to make changes but giving him time without serious financial backing is pointless.

    Two or three seasons of finishing in mid table then sacking him is the worst thing that can happen for Liverpool because then they are stuck in the dreaded cycle of bringing in a new manager with his own ideas and needing time to turn things around. Teams like Chelsea and Man city can axe a manager no problem and still be competitive and have success because they have the financial resources to strengthen the team for any incoming manager but Liverpool don’t have that option right now and to be honest i can’t see that changing in the next 2-3 seasons.

    The game has changed so much now that you need to be able to bring in quality players and if you can get some young player coming through the academy then that’s just a bonus. To me its criminal how previous Liverpool FC owners failed to move with the times and maximize the potential Liverpool brand when the premier league era began.

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