Liverpool are on the brink of history in the Champions League but it is the Premier League the Reds covet most.
Mo Salah has been on a tear this season but with a bit of help, Jurgen Klopp might just deliver the title.
Naby Keita will arrive from RB Leipzig and more will come after pocketing £142m in January from Barcelona for Philippe Coutinho.
Klopp’s style of play is appealing and in the big games, it has proven too much for even Manchester City – but consistency is key to win a league title and that will be the next goal for the Reds.
Here’s what they need to do to close the gap and make those head-to-head wins vs other title rivals even more valuable.
Who they need to keep
Who they need to lose
Daniel Sturridge, Lazar Markovic.
What they have to address
Defence and keeper are much better so back-ups for up front and a goalscorer is required should Firmino or Salah get injured.
Who they need to target
They’ve already signed Naby Keita as a dynamic midfielder, and Thomas Lemar is still very much on the radar. Naopli’s Jorginho could be a successor to Emre Can.
Is the current manager the man to win the title
Damn right he is. The fans adore him, his style of play is exciting and he has built a fine, young team who will only develop further.
Already, the talk is of City being unstoppable next year, but that thinking defies recent history…and logic.
It’s almost a decade since Manchester United became the last team to retain the title, when it appeared they were establishing a monopoly on the Premier League.
Since then, nine seasons, nine changes of the ribbons on the silverware. It’s a tough league to win, but even tougher to retain. Maintaining the focus, the energy and personnel to become champions is difficult.
Of course City ran away with the title, but when United won the it in 2000-01 with five games to spare, guess what? They didn’t retain their crown the next season. United were only third in 01-02, in fact.
So let’s not get too carried away with a Scottish style one-horse race in the Premier League. These are all compelling reasons why Liverpool can be genuine contenders next year. The biggest though? Jurgen Klopp.
He won the league in Germany twice against the impossible odds of Bayern Munich financial and historical dominance, and he is building a team at Anfield that looks even more exciting and dynamic than his Dortmund side.
Liverpool are a young team. Incredibly, the average age of arguably their best XI is 24.5 years…and that is mind-blowing for a team on the verge of a Champions’ League final.
They will keep Mo Salah, that much is certain. So the key will be recruitment. Already, they have signed Naby Keita, and his performances this season suggest he will be an important addition.
The defence is now settled, the keeper looks increasingly assured, so it is a question of back up for their brilliant forward line, and energetic midfield. Don’t he surprised if they add Thomas Lemar and Jorginho, and if they do, don’t be surprised if they become genuine title contenders next season.
Who will be Manchester City’s biggest rivals for the title next season?
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