The Liverpool juggernaut rumbles on.
It is now 38 games in a row unbeaten for Liverpool in the Premier League, and it is starting to look as if no-one will be able to defeat them. The records continue to tumble – they have now amassed the highest points tally of any team at this point of the season not only in English footballing history, but also across the top five leagues in Europe as well.
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Their latest victory came against Tottenham in north London. Spurs actually had more shots during the match, which indicates that the Reds were not at their best, but that didn’t matter in the end as Jurgen Klopp’s men ran out 1-0 winners thanks to Roberto Firmino’s strike.
This match saw Jordan Henderson line-up in a more defensive midfield role, as you can see via the heatmap below. This was truly a top performance, despite some supporters believing he put in a disappointing display.
With 106 touches, he played a big part in the Reds having 67% possession during the match, with him also picking up a passing accuracy of no less than 93%. He also managed one key pass as well, putting the ball to good use when he had it at his feet.
He is in this side more for his defensive qualities, though, and he was able show that off against Jose Mourinho’s side. He made a match-leading five tackles, even if he was also dribbled past twice. This was a captain’s performance, and he has now led his team one step closer to a first league title in 30 years.
The 55-time England international has been forced to take up a deeper position in the middle of the park due to Fabinho’s injury. When the former AS Monaco man was forced out of the action for the foreseeable future after picking up an issue against Napoli in November, there were worries that the Anfield outfit would not be able to cope. However, they have continued to be as dominant, if not even more so than they were with the 26-year-old in the side – since he has been on the sidelines, they have won all eight Premier League games, whilst also keeping six clean sheets compared just two with him in the side.
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Henderson has officially played in defensive midfield for five of those matches. Given the way he has helped his team look considerably more solid from a defensive point of view, £63m-valued Fabinho – as per Transfermarkt – now has a real battle on his hands to get back into Klopp’s starting XI. Time will tell if the 52-year-old will put him back into the team immediately once he is fit, or whether he will be reluctant to change a winning team.
Elsewhere, Liverpool should move this man on despite his recent good form.