Is Liverpool Back in the English Premier League Title Race?

Liverpool played an inspired match! (Photo: Sports.xin.msn.com)

Liverpool made a big statement last weekend by defeating Arsenal 5-1.  Such a victory over a team at the top of the table is nothing short of remarkable, and has seen the mighty Reds of Anfield thrust right back into the conversation of title contenders.  Now just 6 points off of the top behind new leaders Chelsea, Liverpool has every realistic shot at competing for the EPL crown.  But will this recent victory inspire them to push onwards in champion-winning fashion, or will they continue their inconsistent ways?

On their day in front of their vibrant home supporters, Liverpool is a force to be reckoned with.  The game with Arsenal was supposed to be an enthralling, highly competitive game.  Within 20 minutes, the score was 4-0 and the home team was playing with joy and flair.  Perhaps as enchanting that Liverpool performed that day was partially due to how terrible the Gunners came out, but all that mattered was that a very solid performance was put in by the squad.

Looking ahead, this team has all the pieces of the puzzle necessary for a title run.  They have two premier strikers in Daniel Sturridge and Luis Suarez (possibly the greatest goal-scorer on the planet right now), they have experienced veterans all over the pitch, especially in defense where Kolo Toure, Martin Skrtel, Daniel Agger, and Glen Johnson dominate.  And let’s not forget the brave English midfielder Steven Gerrard, who has surprisingly yet to win an EPL title in his incredible career!  He must be starving for such a prize and will surely be pushing his team on towards that goal.  Additionally, the young talent on Liverpool is top class featuring Raheem Sterling, Mamadou Sakho, and Jordan Henderson.  With seemingly all the pieces of the puzzle covered, all that the team needs to do is come to play every day and they have a shot.

But what has plagued Liverpool, and is the reason why they are currently in 4th place, is that they cannot string together a run of results, and are especially weak away from home.  While they just demolished Arsenal at Anfield, the week before saw them draw away to West Bromwich.  They have only lost one game in front of their home fans (to Southampton last September) all season.  Liverpool is entering a fairly soft part of their schedule, and they will have the fortune of hosting their fellow contenders Manchester City and Chelsea at home in April.  Could the team slowly work themselves back into the fold before they strike against their challengers and claim the prize late in the season?  Well, a good start would be proving themselves away from home with a win against Fulham at Craven Cottage this Wednesday.

The wonderful thing about the English Premier League is that the landscape of the table can change very quickly with just a couple matches played.  Their 6-point disadvantage could be erased with just two games, or it could be extended to 12.  But instead of worrying about the table, this squad simply must prove that they are capable of winning matches away from home.  If they can finally use this recent victory to propel them to a good run against some weaker teams, Liverpool could very well be able to host Chelsea and Man City with the title on the line, and they just might win it!  Ladies and gentlemen, we have a new dark horse contender for the title in England!


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