Liverpool win takes Premier League title race to the last day
It is, as Klopp himself said after the match, “not likely but possible” as Manchester City, the league’s leader, is a point ahead and can secure a third title in four seasons if it beats Aston Villa at home Sunday.
But Villa is managed by Liverpool’s celebrated former captain Steven Gerrard and playing a part in helping Liverpool secure its 20th top-flight title would be redemption for a man who never won the league with his hometown club. That would be the sort of fanciful story written by a Hollywood scriptwriter, but stranger things have happened in football.
After all, at the start of the year, Liverpool trailed City by 14 points — but 15 league victories and two draws in the league since January 15 have given the Reds a chance of a second title under Klopp.
“If I was in the other situation, then I don’t feel like I am champion already. From my point of view, in second, you are thinking that, of course, City will win that game. But it is football,” Klopp told reporters.
“So many things happen during this second part of the season. I think if we would become champions it would be deserved as well, but for that we have to win and then we have to see.”
Liverpool must focus on its next match, in beating Wolves at Anfield, and hope Villa plays its part in maintaining Klopp’s quest for the quadruple — securing all three domestic trophies and the Champions League.
It bodes well for Klopp that he made nine changes to the team which beat Chelsea on penalties in the FA Cup final Sunday and still overcame Southampton away.
Takumi Minamino and Joel Matip scored for the Reds at St Mary’s after Nathan Redmond had given Southampton an early lead.
“I saw incredible performances,” said Klopp.
“I’m so happy about the performance. These boys. [It’s] like having Ferraris in the garage and you let them out and they directly do it like this.”
Liverpool has two games remaining in what could be an incredible season. First, there is Wolves and then the Champions League final against Real Madrid at the end of the month.
Two trophies — the League Cup and FA Cup — already won, two possibly still to come.