IT’S back again. The exuberance by virtue of another win. The restoration of hope, over-optimism and delusion. The revitalisation brought by a new manager who pleads with his players to have fun, and to have fun winning.
And I’m having fun. Still smiling through the kind of two-day hangover that surfaces only following a 4-1 win away and domination of the team the table told us to fear most. Breathtaking in transition, chances created in abundance and the arrival of Bobby Firmino, who announces himself to the league as Liverpool’s next boy from Brazil to be feared.
The weight of what’s gone before is lifting fast and Jürgen Klopp has instilled a new-found confidence and sense of togetherness that bears semblance to a team who are enjoying playing football for Liverpool.
There’s a resurgence of players emerging with a renewed sense of value and importance within Jürgen’s Reds, amidst a revival they can get behind. A revival we can all get behind.
Some repeatedly relegated to the periphery under the previous regime are now reinvigorated by the emotive orchestration of their manager on the sidelines. He’s an unrelenting almost intimidating presence who cannot be ignored and is perfectly demonstrative of how he’d like his team to impose themselves. And that they did at the Etihad.
Firmino and Coutinho dazzled and danced in a way we’ve not seen this season. The continuation of Adam Lallana’s transformation under Klopp was evident, selling dummies and suffocating City’s centre backs at every opportunity. In an emphatic first half, he epitomised exactly the mantra of his new manager. You’d have been forgiven for thinking he was the fourth Brazilian in Liverpool’s line up.
Lucas Leiva, our midfield fortifier and calming figure of seniority, now appears armed with a new found dynamism and diligence, continuing to dispel any worries that he wouldn’t fit in at Klopp’s Liverpool.
Doomed to depart for Besiktas last summer, destined for Inter every other, he’s now undroppable and unsellable — something that could seldom, if ever, be said under Brendan Rodgers. I’m honestly debating whether to sack this piece off to write a Lucas Leiva love letter instead. He’s that good.
Alberto Moreno and Jordon Ibe, who previously looked lost trying to find their identity as Liverpool players, are now showing their worth for Liverpool. Even the much maligned Dejan Lovren enjoyed arguably his best showing on Saturday — suggesting that there’s at least a possibility he still could yet add his name to the list growing longer of Liverpool players showing a renewed worth under Klopp.
The correlation is confidence. There’s a feeling of self importance amongst the players again. These are the tools for the job. These are the players who have emerged, previously bereft of belief, now placating any negativity leftover from the previous regime.
As Klopp adds the charisma and leadership qualities to a side in need, there’s a togetherness growing within the club as a collective.
He’s building an affiliation with his players, just like at Dortmund. You see that in the celebrations and in the hugs. Us against them, the way it should be.
Firmino, Coutinho, Lallana and the rest ensured any headlines around their reunion with Raheem was dominated by the performances of only those in a red shirt, reminding us that it is only those in red that matter.
These Reds are the real deal. In a league led by Leicester City, where we blitz City 4-1, who knows what can be achieved with a revival that we’re all behind.
Pics: David Rawcliffe-Propaganda-Photo