By James Pearce
Now it’s Liverpool going for the title
This is the calm before the storm. When Brendan Rodgers’ players reconvene at Melwood on Tuesday after a well earned break their sights will be set on Old Trafford.
Every fixture with Manchester United is eagerly anticipated but next Sunday’s lunchtime showdown is different.
For more than two decades Liverpool FC have been used to going into these games cut adrift and looking up at their rivals.
The height of their ambitions has been to wreck United’s party rather than hold one of their own.
Battles have been occasionally won but wars were always lost. Three years ago this week Dirk Kuyt bagged a hat-trick on an afternoon to cherish at Anfield but two months later United clinched the title by a nine-point margin.
It’s a chastening statistic that United have won the Premier League on 13 occasions since Liverpool’s last top flight triumph in 1990. You have to go back to 2002 when Gerard Houllier’s side were runners-up to Arsenal for the last time the Reds finished above United.
Yet now the backdrop to this fixture is very different. Roles have been reversed. It’s Rodgers’ Liverpool challenging for glory and United wallowing in mid-table mediocrity.
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