“IT ain’t about how hard you hit. It’s about how hard you can get hit and keep moving forward; how much you can take and keep moving forward. That’s how winning is done!”
Yeah, I know he’s a Blueshite, but your man Sylvester Stallone had a point.
For all the talk of last week’s excellent result, the only people talking about tonight’s game as a foregone conclusion were either Manchester City fans or in the media, I didn’t speak to one Liverpool fan or read anything that took Manchester City anything other than very seriously.
As the days ticked down to the Champions League quarter final second leg at the Etihad, despite a healthy first leg advantage, and despite our slowly developing swagger and self assurance, the self doubt began to condense, a slow drip became a stream, which became a river once game day had dawned.
The fight of left brain and right brain, stop it, don’t do it to yourself, we’ll be fine, won’t we?
A healthy respect for one of the best sides in Europe is quite reasonable, but the root cause of this fatalism is far more deep rooted in the psyche of the average Liverpool fan.
Given what we’ve been witness to over recent history, we’ve been conditioned to fear the worst, and when the oasis of calm that has been Virgil van Dijk drops one in the first two minutes to give City the lifeline they craved, the river becomes a torrent.
But, despite all the City pressure and domination, they didn’t create too many clear chances, and even the one they had chalked off incorrectly was down to another Liverpool error.
Previously, as recent as earlier this season, Liverpool would have mentally crumbled, a lightning fast, relentless, dizzying, stinging heavyweight with a glass chin.
The body of evidence of recent history shows one undeniable fact, that THIS Liverpool team is evolving quicker than most of us can keep up with.
As a rationalisation tool, when I’m desperate for any buoy in a sea of doubt to cling to I’ll often check the bookies odds and at no point during the game were Manchester City ever really close to being favourites to qualify for the next round.
Me? I’d have put money on finishing with nine men and a 5-0 defeat after the opening 10 minutes.
But they didn’t, they weathered the City storm, as they did in the second half at Anfield last week, to not only see it out, but to record a third victory against the team that the above-mentioned bookmakers made the outright favourites for the European Cup in the days up to kick off at Anfield.
Regardless of who we get in the semi finals (Sounds boss, doesn’t it? What are YOU doing Friday morning?) an indelible marker has been put down tonight, not for everyone else in Europe, but for ourselves.
Anything is possible.
Bring on yer Roma by the score…
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“What a night!” 😍
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— The Anfield Wrap (@TheAnfieldWrap) 10 April 2018
Good read Andy. As I watched Salah’s lovely goal go in, I couldn’t get Pilot’s “Magic” song out of my head…
Mo, Mo, Mo he’s magic
Never believe he’s not sooo
He’s magic…you know
Never believe he’s not sooooo….
Sorry couldn’t help this one, still ringing in my head…
This team and Klopp were beyond excellent tonight!!! I was, and so was everyone in Red I bet, on the edge the whole game, but that goal by Salah just let me breathe again.
Firmino taking his goal with class, composure and skill, and the defensive improvement after the early goal, shows how far he and team have come. We can park the bus when we need to, and that shows we can adapt.
Oh and the icing on the cake for tonight was seeing Barca eliminated by Roma, and wondering what Coutinho must be thinking now.
Well done to the men in Red, well done all you away supporters and well done Klopp!
Let’s stay focused and keep on marching!!
How true ! nearly passed out with anxiety in the first half
However this team is another type of animal to the Reds of yesteryear
The biggest sign of this team’s evolution for me is Karius. Against Sevilla in the group stage, when things were crazy, he’d catch and immediately look to distribute. All that was needed was him to go to ground and waste 10 seconds to slow the game back down.
He did that brilliantly tonight. The easy catches and saves he made, which were followed by him on the ground was exactly what he needed to do to take the wind out of Man City’s sails in the second half.
Up the Reds. Show them the way to go home…..
Lads showed loads of courage.
The song in my head was was Starship ” we built this city on Rock & Roll.”
I am singing, we beat Man City with Bob & Mo
Up the mighty reds.
Coutinho? Barcelona? Who?