Fabinho is a monster in the middle of the field
Fabinho was clearly the MOTM with a dominant performance in midfield. Countless interceptions and great distribution of the ball from the center of the field was key to Liverpool taking over the midfield which leads to constant pressure on the Spurs goal. Klopp took his time working him in and he has now become a huge part of the spine of the team along with VVD and Alisson.
Trust in what we do
Aside from Matip’s replacement, I think every Reds fan knew who was going to be in the starting lineup. Klopp trusts this midfield trio and that they will deliver at the end of the day. The trust is warranted and well deserved based on what they have done in the past. Despite the temptation to bring a midfielder who would bring more of an attacking threat like Ox or Keita, Klopp stuck with the midfield he trusted. In the end, they validated his trust by dominating the middle of the field and ensuring constant pressure on the Spurs. Give Klopp full credit. Most fans including myself felt an additional spark was needed to turn the game at half time. Trust Klopp who trusts this trio.
Henderson battles for redemption
Doubters and haters of Lovren blamed the goal solely on Dejan but I think the majority of the blame goes to Hendo on that one. A terrible giveaway in the middle of the field when he had wide-open players to pass to, and a poor job of giving help defense on Son when he tracked back. The captain battled through it with his usual work-rate in the middle, winning back the ball several times in the middle of the field. He also did the unusual and contributed with a goal. Henderson personifies the toughness that Klopp demands from his midfield. He is not the fastest player and does not possess a lot of attacking midfielder qualities but he makes up for it with the way he approaches the game and leads by example. There is a reason why opposing players always get chippy with Henderson. He does not back down from any tackle and is willing to sacrifice his body.
Mane’s tenacity wins penalties… and games…
Very similar to the Leicester City game, Mane earned Liverpool a penalty with his relentless pressure on the ball. Mane’s tenacity to go after the ball makes defenders uncomfortable and make mistakes. His willingness to go full speed after the ball put Aurier under pressure. Aurier thought he had the situation under control and was getting ready to clear the ball but underestimated Mane’s speed and more importantly, his never stop attitude. While Salah and Firminio both had great games throughout the young season, Mane has been the constant force out of the front three. He has scored goals, created chances and has been a pest for opposing defenses.
This is not the first time the Reds fell behind at Anfield due to an early goal. There is no denying that the team has another level of swagger when playing home and feel confident that they can beat anyone. This not only gives the team confidence but the fans as well. 3-4 years ago, you could hear some of the fans turn on the team midgame due to frustration and become a negative force instead of the drive behind the team. Klopp has made this stadium believe that they can accomplish anything and the fans believe in this team and its resilience. Even someone like me who makes worrying a lifestyle can always have hope and belief that the Reds are in every game regardless of the scoreline.
Huge three points against another top opponent. What a team! YNWA!