Liverpool in 2020: undisputed champions, incredible spirit and more to come

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After 30 years of waiting, Liverpool finally ended their title drought, closing the crown after Manchester City fell in defeat at Stamford Bridge.

In truth, no other side came close to challenging the Reds, and only the COVID-19 pandemic put their title in doubt.

Here’s a look back at a historic year for Liverpool.

Best Player – Mohamed Salah

Mohamed salah
Salah has had another blinding year

Alisson, Trent Alexander-Arnold, Virgil van Dijk, Andy Robertson, Jordan Henderson, Sadio Mane – you could probably make a compelling case for all these players who won Liverpool’s Player of the Year award.

However, Mohamed Salah had a 2020 hard to ignore. He finished the calendar year as the Premier League’s top scorer, five ahead of Manchester United’s Bruno Fernandes in second place (via Opta in Twitter). His strong start to the new season has steered the Egyptian towards a third Premier League Golden Boot.

Best match – Liverpool 2-0 Manchester United

Alisson and Salah celebrate a second against their staunch rivals

In one of the most anticipated matches on the Premier League calendar, Anfield exploded as Liverpool secured a 2-0 win over bitter rivals Manchester United.

Virgil van Dijk opened the scoring with a header from the corner by Trent Alexander-Arnold to give the hosts an early lead. The next 75 minutes were tense and nervous, but Jurgen Klopp’s men held their ground before Mohamed Salah scored at the break from Alisson’s long pass.

For many Liverpool fans, this was the moment when they knew they would be champions again.

Worst game – Liverpool 2-3 Atlético de Madrid

Atlético de Madrid scored three goals in extra time to knock out Liverpool

In contrast to their league form, the Reds suffered an early exit in the Champions League.

Having managed an impressive 1-0 defeat at the Wanda Metropolitano, Liverpool hosted Atlético de Madrid at Anfield, hoping to reverse the deficit.

Georginio Wijnaldum leveled the aggregate score just before half-time, but Klopp’s team couldn’t prevent the game from going into extra time, having missed several good chances.

When Roberto Firmino made the hosts 2-0, the reigning champion seemed headed for the quarterfinals. However, Marcos Llorente struck back three minutes later to put the tie back in favor of Atlético de Madrid, before taking a second in the 105th minute.

Liverpool could not defend themselves from this, and a late finish by Álvaro Morata compounded their misery, causing wild celebrations from Los Rojiblancos manager Diego Simeone.

Transfer business

Thiago’s career at Liverpool has been limited by injuries

Difficult to pass judgment, really.

Takumi Minamino was the only one to arrive in January. Although it hasn’t made much of an impression yet, it costs relatively little and offers decent coverage.

Thiago Alcantara was the Reds’ star signing of the summer. However, the Spaniard has suffered from fitness issues, making only three appearances in all competitions. When it goes live, it should be a very useful addition to Klopp’s list. Similarly, Greek left-back Kostas Tsimikas has seen his playing time limited by injuries.

Diogo Jota arrived from Wolverhampton Wanderers for £ 43m, a move that caught the attention of many. The Portuguese has silenced the critics with nine goals in all competitions.

Nobody too important left in the last 12 months. Dejan Lovren was sold to Zenit St. Petersburg, while young Rhian Brewster contributed £ 23.5 million from Sheffield United. Nathaniel Clyne and Adam Lallana also left with free transfers.

After all, the transfer business has been a success for Liverpool. Although, they will be desperate to terminate Georginio Wijnaldum’s contract before the Dutchman leaves for free.

How has the manager been?

Ajax vs Liverpool live
Klopp has been exceptional in Liverpool

What can you say? The German has been incredible at Anfield.

Having finally gotten his hands on that elusive trophy in 2019, Klopp took it a step further next year, sailing to the league title with hardly spending anything in the summer.

And despite this season’s injury crisis at center-back, the former Borussia Dortmund boss has put his team on track to retain the Premier League trophy, although it looks like he won’t be as comfortable this season.

General consensus

A truly special year for Liverpool.

Despite the disappointment in the Champions League, Reds fans will not forget 2020 in a hurry. They finally secured the Premier League trophy, ending a period of drought that seemed almost incomprehensible in 1990.

Virgil van Dijk’s injury threatened to derail their hopes of defending the title, but they have held firm, finishing the year on top. Whether they’ll seal back-to-back wins remains to be seen, but things are looking promising.

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