Last season, Liverpool FC were able to end a 30 year title drought by dropping points in only six of their 38 league fixtures. Now that the pressure has been lifted off the shoulders of the players, it is time for the club to push towards back to back Premier League titles.
With Manchester City retaining a majority of their most talented players and Chelsea having one of the biggest transfer overhauls in recent memory, it looks like both of those teams will really make Liverpool work for another title.
The gap between first and second was 18 points last season, but many believe it could be a three horse race at the top of the table. With all of that being said, does the Merseyside club have what it takes to win the 2020/2021 league title?
Going into the summer break, many questioned if Liverpool would attempt to strengthen the squad in the market. Reports came out that German forward Timo Werner was interested in joining the team, but he chose to sign for Chelsea after Liverpool was not willing to pay his transfer fee.
For a majority of the transfer window, the team was linked with Bayern Munich midfielder Thiago Alcântara. The Spanish international was in the last year of his contract, so the German club was looking to sign him to another deal or sell him. They went for the latter, and Liverpool was the club that he wanted to begin another chapter of his career at.
Less than 24 hours later, the club was heavily linked with a young attacker from another English side. 23-year-old Diogo Jota was the man Liverpool were looking to bring in to add depth to their front line. The Portugese international had been with Wolverhampton Wanderers for the last three seasons, but wanted to take the next step in his football career. The two clubs settled on a £41m deal for the player that could rise to £45m with add-ons.
For a team that is looking to make another push towards more trophies this season, Liverpool desperately needed to bring in reinforcements through the transfer market. After making no key signings going into last season, the squad looks much more well-rounded and deeper going into this campaign.
Talent All Over the Field:
To become one of the most consistent teams in the world, you need to have talented players all across the pitch. Liverpool has been able to build a team over the last couple of years that suits Klopp’s style of play.
Defensively, the club has built their back five in a unique way that has a good mix of established stars and young promising defenders. Goalkeeper Alisson Becker was signed for £66.8m in the summer of 2018, and he has been one of the best shot stoppers in the world during that span of time.
Virgil van Dijk and Joe Gomez have developed a great partnership that has created one of the best center back pairings in the Premier League. 29-year-old Joël Matip is another servivable option that has been with the club since 2016.
At left and right back, Anfield hosts two of the most dynamic players at their respective positions. Trent Alexander-Arnold and Andrew Robertson have been sensational over the last two seasons, combining for 48 assists in the league. Attacking fullbacks are becoming more prominent in this era of world football, and both of these players have benefited so much from having the freedom to go forward.
For the club, the midfield is where you find a lot of depth, as the coaching staff has the ability to play certain players depending on the way their opponent sets up. Fabinho is a defensive midfielder who does a great job protecting the back four.
Club captain Jordan Henderson has the ability to play as a six as well, but is more suited to play as a hard-working center midfielder. James Milner and Georginio Wijnaldum are also very good players who show plenty of energy when given the opportunity.
For midfielders who offer a little more going forward, Thiago adds a lot of leadership and winning pedigree to that group of players. Naby Keita, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, and young Curtis Jones are three players who will lean on their new teammate as they compete for places in the team.
Considering how many talented players have come through the club in recent memory, the front three they have currently could be one of the best front threes in the history of the Premier League. Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane have developed into two of the best wingers in the world, scoring 123 league goals over the last three seasons.
The other key piece of their front three makes the attack go is Roberto Firmino. The centre forward is known for his ability to come deep and give the other attackers the space to get in behind the defense. The Brazilian’s ability to create space for his teammates is something you rarely see from a forward, but that is what makes him such a talented footballer.
Quality depth in the attack has been a concern for Liverpool for the last few seasons, but the signing of Diogo Jota adds someone who can play all across the front three. Champions League hero Divock Origi and Takumi Minamino will also be rotated throughout the league campaign.
After a remarkable run that ended in a first Premier League title in over 30 years, Liverpool will be looking to repeat as champions. Manchester City and Chelsea are two fantastic sides that will certainly push the Merseyside club for the title, but do Liverpol have enough to get over the line?
With an extremely talented squad that just added Thiago Alcântara and Diogo Jota in the last week, Jürgen Klopp and his staff have the quality to win a second straight title. With that being said, I believe Liverpool FC will be the 2020/2021 Premier League Champions.