Two Focuses For February at Liverpool FC
The rest of February presents a big opportunity for Liverpool FC. They have a good chunk of time to recoup, rest, and have a long line of training to get themselves sorted. The match this past weekend against Tottenham Hotspur was a turning point of the season for good or ill. If the slide had continued on Saturday for the Reds, the towel may have been thrown in for the season. Europe would have been a fleeting opportunity. Manchester United was poised to leapfrog into fifth place, leaving the Reds adrift from Europe.
The two-nil victory flips the script, making a run to qualify for the Champions League a realistic goal. Jürgen Klopp has revealed a mini-preseason plan for this time off, so the squad can recharge and focus. These are two ways in which the Reds can optimize this time off.
Rest and Focus
They must use these 2-3 rest days Klopp outlined. The squad is generally fit, with the exception of Dejan Lovren who is recovering from a slight knee injury. Ragnar Klavan had an infection that has cleared up, so that leaves only Lovren. Rest is essential to Klopp’s Gegenpressing style, and this rest will help players keep their legs. Exhaustion could be a culprit for the January slide for Liverpool. It would be best to avoid that happening again. Lucas Leiva featured quite heroically in central defense in their absence. Lucas often comes under fire from supporters though leadership out of position on Saturday lets them know why he is so essential to the team.
Confidence and Cohesion
Solidifying a first eleven is paramount as well. Their miniature pre-season in La Manga was a good change of scenery for the squad. Sadio Mané said this week, upon returning to Liverpool that the training was very intense. Jurgen Klopp took his Dortmund side to this same resort, and it was also beneficial in the same way. Conor Masterson, the U-18 Team’s captain was included on this trip as well showing his potential to break into the first team squad soon. We as supporters must hope that the youth can support the established players and visa-versa.
If Liverpool are to continue their return to form against the languid Leicester City, they have to be firing on all cylinders. Tottenham could not handle a fluid and quick Reds side, and their defense is stalwart. The Foxes on the other had have struggled beyond words, and winning convincingly must be the objective. A return match at Anfield against Arsenal looms five days later as well. But the Reds must focus on one fixture at a time. If they do that for their last thirteen fixtures things should be just fine. They must do these things, and if they do the Champions League will certainly be on the horizon next autumn.
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