There is something special about a child waiting for Santa on Christmas Eve. What will he bring? Have I been good? How am I going to fall asleep? When can I get up out of bed? There is a feeling of hope, nervousness, fear, and excitement. So many emotions. So many emotions…
And while the time has evolved from waiting for Santa to becoming Santa, there is a time of year when all of those feelings are the same. When is that time of year? It is what I like to call “Premiership Eve”.
The night before the season kicks off is always one of hope and expectation. It is the time when we believe anything is possible. The signings have been made. The preseason has been solid. I have bought my new jersey. We are ready. Could this really be our year? What will we do against our big rivals? Who will be our biggest threat? A solid start is vital, but who do we have for the run-in? Who do our rivals have? The mind wanders. Every game is vital, and the new season bounce or first-day feeling can cause many a surprise. Will we be ok? Have our new signings settled in enough?
From 1990 to 2020, every year was going to be our year. On “Premiership Eve” I convinced myself every year that that year would be the year to end our long wait for the title. All we needed was a good start. I even convinced myself that the year Roy Hodgson took over, the signing of Joe Cole with the likes of Gerard and Carragher could propel us to the title. Oh, what a dreamer I was!
What will this season bring?
Mane has left, but our frontline is arguably stronger with Diaz on one side and Salah on the other. Nunez has the potential to take the forward line to a whole other level. With Firmino pulling the strings and Jota there also, our frontline is mouthwatering. So much has been said about our midfield group. Yes, it may be a year older, but this is a team that went to the Champions League final only a couple of months ago. They do not age overnight. Combine that with the midfield potential of Jones, Elliot, and Carvalho, and the potential is boundless. The defense was solid last year and is as strong as ever. We truly have an incredible squad.
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Are we stronger than our rivals? Spurs have strengthened, as have Arsenal. Chelsea will surely make a few signings before Deadline day. The biggest fear for me would be that Antonio Conte brings a higher level of consistency to Spurs. And finally what about Man City? They have sold Sterling and Gabriel Jesus and will need Haaland to come in running. Will he adjust easily to the premier league and will he be ready for the physical demands of the season?
No one knows what will happen. What I do know is that I will lie in bed awake on Friday evening, hoping that this year will be our year. I will play through the different team permutations in my head. I will think of the important dates when we face our biggest rivals. And I will close my eyes to see the premiership title being lifted aloft once more at a full Anfield.