Thank you for a brilliant Premier League season, Liverpool.

Kaustubh Pandey
6 min readMay 7, 2019


The social media often steals credit away so many times in so many cases. It does that to a point till it can make a winner look like a loser. It can make something look like its the worst thing in the world.

The diverse opinions one gets on there is certainly enriching and worth attention, but after a point it becomes toxic. The bias and nonsensical abuse have made Liverpool’s season look like a failure in every way.

The arguments that come flowing out of rival fans’ mouths relates to how they are at the risk of ending another season trophyless and how they ‘bottled’ a seven-point-lead at the top of the Premier League. They say that the Liverpool fans are the most annoying bunch of fans in the world, making the situation seem so overly hypocritical. Another bunch claims that they have been lucky to have multiple refereeing decisions go their way.

Every single point of view that takes credit away from Liverpool’s season embarrasses me. I’m not a Liverpool fan. But I give credit where due. I’m not carried away by bias or stereotype.

Let's go stepwise here.

Does winning a trophy mean that the team has had a bad season? Does playing well and progressing always translate into winning the Premier League? Ask a Brighton fan and he will laugh in your face and walk away. Ask an Eintracht Frankfurt fan and he’ll make a mockery of your logic. Ask an Atalanta fan and he will shout ‘Vaffanculo’ and brand you as a disgrace.

Liverpool should be given due credit

Liverpool finished eighth in the 2015–16 season. Eighth. Today, they are going toe to toe for a title that will probably be won by a perfect team. A team that is considered one of the best in the Premier League era.

From having Rickie Lambert, Fabio Borini and Lazar Markovic as their front three, they have the most terrifying front three in Europe today. From having Steven Caulker and Kolo Toure as their defenders to having Virgil van Dijk win the Player of the Season award. From having Glen Johnson to having two young full-backs who have 10 and 11 assists in the league this season.

Those were the days

If that’s not progress, I’m not sure what is. Just because Liverpool won’t win the league doesn’t mean they have progressed a lot since Jurgen Klopp first took over.

People don’t want Liverpool to win the league because they have ‘annoying fans’ should know that every single club in the world has a bunch of annoying fans. My club does too. I can name clubs who have annoying fans but I won’t because every club has them.

Coming to the refereeing decisions and how ‘lucky’ they supposedly have been, its never a bad thing to have in football. I do agree with the fact that Liverpool may not have come this far if Riyadh Mahrez had scored *that* penalty at Anfield or if some contentious refereeing decisions hadn’t gone their way. But are Liverpool alone? No. Are the refereeing conspiring for Liverpool to win the Premier League? No.

If Manchester City weren’t this perfect, Liverpool would have been miles ahead of everyone else today. Because they are a very well run club. They’re a club that should be setting examples to many other poorly run clubs across the world.

About a year ago, Liverpool knew what they wanted. They wanted a new, top class goalkeeper. They wanted a top central defender. They wanted a defensive midfield player. Today, they have Alisson, Virgil van Dijk and Fabinho. Very few clubs in Europe can do business in this fashion. They knew what they wanted and they got exactly that. The owners backed Klopp in his intentions and helped him have everything he needed to bring these players to Anfield. They filled the pores up and while they still do lack quality depth up front, they had an inch-perfect first team.

Not only that, its about the mentality too.

With Van Dijk, Liverpool have a towering and authoritative leader. An imposing figure who will get things right and will want his players to get everything right. He’s the modern day version of what a footballing leader should look like and be like.

He hasn’t just brought to the fore his quality on the pitch. He’s helped Liverpool get rid of a soft underbelly that used to get exposed in tight situations. Three seasons ago, Liverpool would have slipped up in 1–0 situations when the opposition in hustling and harrying them. But Van Dijk has brought a big degree of calm to the club. He has brought this assurance with him that nothing is going wrong while he’s there. And that has lifted every player up a level.

Joel Matip and Dejan Lovren aren’t the best of defenders. But Van Dijk’s presence has made them better. In a team that has full-backs in Trent Alexander-Arnold and Andy Roberton often play like wingers, it is tough to not concede goals on a regular basis. It leaves the two defenders at the back exposed to a massive extent. But Van Dijk has allowed them the assurance to do their job. And while doing that, it is a tremendous achievement to have the Player of the Year award.

I always had doubts about their ability to resist when the pressure is right on them. But they proved them wrong ever since they beat Crystal Palace away from home. It started from there. It was a pragmatic performance which wasn’t the best going forward but very stout defensively. That is where Liverpool’s secret lies. Even when they aren’t playing well, they win games.

Heck, Mohamed Salah hasn’t had a very good season despite scoring 22 goals. Liverpool haven’t been at their flowing best at all times. Not as good as last season. But they are still hanging on. Its a sign of a team that has a gritty resolve and a lion-like mentality.

If a title race this had transpired 20 years ago, Liverpool would have been hailed and lauded for the season they’ve had. Ideally, the same should be the case today.

But Manchester City can’t help but make many teams look bad. Such is their strive for perfection that teams who played the best football in the league- Tottenham and Liverpool, have been made to look very ordinary when you bat an eye at City. And they just won’t stop. The backing from their owners and the way they’re run as a whole allows Pep Guardiola the impetus to do great things with the club.

That should never make people question to give perfection a run for its money. Imagine a human coming close to the jobs a robot can do effortlessly. It will be credited as a superhuman entity.

Another argument that springs to my mind is how fans on social media despise clubs like Manchester City and Paris Saint-Germain for being run by oil-rich men from the Middle East. They don’t want them to succeed because they’re seen as clubs who can get anything they want and can make weird adjustments with authorities to do the same.

They can laud the victory of Manchester United over Paris Saint-Germain in the Champions League as the victory of ‘true football’. But they will never see Liverpool give a perfect Manchester City a run for their money as a victory for ‘true football’. Despite the fact that Liverpool, like United, is one of the most storied clubs in world football.

The Merseysiders doing this 30 years after the infamous Hillsborough disaster for a proper working class club should be hailed as a victory for true football. It should stand for the fact that true football still exists and it will never die.



Kaustubh Pandey

Football Writer. I love football for the game's emotion, people and what it means to so many in this world.