By Tony Attwood
Just in case we don’t get a chance to say this again for an Arsenal match – here we have the top club against the second in the league..
Liverpool’s results thus far have been fairly impressive as we would expect from the team that ran Manchester City close last season…
|04 Aug||Liverpool v Manchester City||L||1-1 (4-5)||Community Shield|
|07 Aug||Oldham Athletic v Liverpool||L||3-2||Football League Trophy|
|09 Aug||Liverpool v Norwich City||W||4-1||Premier League|
|14 Aug||Liverpool v Chelsea||W||2-2 (5-4)||UEFA Super Cup|
|17 Aug||Southampton v Liverpool||W||1-2||Premier League|
And as you will probably know they are one of the few teams that has bettered us during the Premier League years having won 20 games against us to our 15 wins against them. They are ahead on goals as well in matches between the two sides in the PL, 87 to 68.
Despite the fact that we are first and second in the league at the moment, and I hope you’ll excuse me if I run that top of the table form just one more time…
the general feeling is that this is a home certainty for Liverpool.
Last season Liverpool were unbeaten at home, winning 17 and drawing 2, while knocking up a goal difference of +45, which was the same as Manchester City. Our away form, as we have discussed here so often, was a distinct improvement on the season before, but not enough to take us back to where we were before the away form drop started.
We finished last season with just seven wins and eight defeats away, and a negative goal difference, so whichever way we look at this, anything but a Liverpool win is going to be a bit of an upset.
Our end of season run was really rather dispiriting…
|21 Apr 2019||Arsenal v Crystal Palace||L||2-3||Premier League|
|24 Apr 2019||Wolverhampton Wanderers v Arsenal||L||3-1||Premier League|
|28 Apr 2019||Leicester City v Arsenal||L||3-0||Premier League|
|02 May 2019||Arsenal v Valencia||W||3-1||Europa League|
|05 May 2019||Arsenal v Brighton and Hove Albion||D||1-1||Premier League|
|09 May 2019||Valencia v Arsenal||W||2-4||Europa League|
|12 May 2019||Burnley v Arsenal||W||1-3||Premier League|
|29 May 2019||Chelsea v Arsenal||L||4-1||Europa League|
Liverpool however, only lost one of their last 24 games of the season, by contrast including four straight wins at the very end.
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|04 May 2019||Newcastle United v Liverpool||W||2-3||Premier League|
|07 May 2019||Liverpool v Barcelona||W||4-0||Champions League|
|12 May 2019||Liverpool v Wolverhampton Wanderers||W||2-0||Premier League|
|01 Jun 2019||Tottenham Hotspur v Liverpool||W||0-2||Champions League|
And just to add to the sense of foreboding we have struggled against Liverpool of late in the Premier League, the last win being back in 2015.
|04 Apr 2015||Arsenal v Liverpool||W||4-1|
|24 Aug 2015||Arsenal v Liverpool||D||0-0|
|13 Jan 2016||Liverpool v Arsenal||D||3-3|
|14 Aug 2016||Arsenal v Liverpool||L||3-4|
|04 Mar 2017||Liverpool v Arsenal||L||3-1|
|27 Aug 2017||Liverpool v Arsenal||L||4-0|
|22 Dec 2017||Arsenal v Liverpool||D||3-3|
|03 Nov 2018||Arsenal v Liverpool||D||1-1|
|29 Dec 2018||Liverpool v Arsenal||L||5-1|
This past summer while Arsenal lashed out a net spend of over £90m, Liverpool had a net profit of over £28m. Their incoming players being
- Sepp van den Berg, from PEC Zwolle for £1.3m
- Andy Lonergan, a free agent
- Harvey Elliott from Fulham for an undisclosed fee
- Adrián from West Ham United on a free
The only departures which were not loans or free transfers were
- Rafael Camacho, Sporting C for £5mMarko Grujic
- Danny Ings to Southampton for £18m
- Simon Mignolet to Club Brügge for £6.4m
Liverpool have of course been in serious trouble for their transfer dealings with children, and have been penalised for them, but have escaped a transfer ban overall, so have not had their buying interrupted for legal reasons. They accepted they made an illegal approach to a Stoke City player and got a two year ban from signing Academy players from other English clubs. Their activities ended up with a player being left in limbo, and a family faced with school fees they could not afford. However the club were not banned from foreign deals, and the second year of the ban was suspended for three years.
It is hard to say how much notice parents of youngsters take of such behaviour or the risks that seem to have been involved in having dealings with Liverpool, nor how much other clubs have started to be wary of Liverpool’s approach to transfers.
More on the match tomorrow.
- Which PL clubs foul more than they are fouled?
- The 116 players coming to Arsenal this summer part 2 Jules Kounde to Piotr Zielinski
- The 116 players coming to Arsenal, part 1: Patrick van Aanholt to Tenu Koopmeiners
- Arsenal’s fouls dropped by 22% last season. Did it help?
- The curious case of how the media treats Man C and how it treats Arsenal