Can this dispirited, dejected Liverpool side do United a favour?
It may be music to your ears, but Liverpool haven’t had a great season. That’s obvious. Manchester United require them to do a big favour this Sunday but can you expect any favours from a club so low on morale given all that has happened in the past week and year? Being knocked out of the Europa League semi final was to big a blow that simply cannot be put into words, being their only real hopes of salvation and reason to celebrate in this hopeless season.
“Great clubs don’t throw their history away, they don’t throw their traditions away for one game.” The usually wise words of Sir Alex and he’s right; Liverpool will give it their all because they are still regarded as an elite club and still have things to play for. As much as the thoughts of United doing the impossible and winning the ‘impossible’ 19th would hurt, they will do their utmost against Chelsea. However, Chelsea know that this is the best time to face the Merseyside club.
Diego Forlan’s goal left the net inundated with status updates, tweets and forum posts, many of them from United fans toasting a ‘victory’, gleeful that their worst rivals won’t be lifting any silverware in the near future. Things do, however, come at a price. Playing 120 minutes was the last thing any United fan could’ve hoped for, and I’m thinking would happily trade a Liverpool triumph for the extra thirty minutes played. And get this, I hoped Liverpool would win that game from kick off. Why? Think about it, what kind of Liverpool side would you want showing up against an in-form Chelsea? A team high in spirits having just made a European final or a team dejected and dispirited, with little to play for.
So, can Liverpool do United a favour? Sure they can, but Chelsea are firm favourites and you wouldn’t bet against them for all three points (Don’t worry this isn’t a Gareth Freeman article!) Expect Benitez to make a number of changes to his squad, even if that means facing the wrath of Sir Alex. Chelsea may just be too strong for them this weekend, but their record at Anfield isn’t one to be pleased about.
And regardless of the result at Anfield, you have to say United have only themselves to blame for some of their results. If they don’t win the league, they should look back at some missed chances rather than this fixture. It’s probably the most decisive week in the Premier League – since its existence – but even if ‘Pool were to win, United still have it all to do against Sunderland later that Sunday. At 6pm, things would become clear. Sir Alex could be tucking into a Sunday roast (very late for one, I know) with a glass of wine, or if things don’t go his way, be eating a slice of humble pie.