Kings Of Europe: Liverpool’s Special Season Revisited

Sean Mullan reflects on his favourite moments as The Reds brought the European Cup back to Anfield
Sean Mullan  |  13th June 2019

Another season and another year of unprecedented progress for Liverpool under Jurgen Klopp.

The Reds have consistently improved since the German’s arrival in 2015 but, crucially, this season backed it up with silverware. A sixth European Cup, along with a stunning Premier League points tally of 97 – a club record – hammered home the message that this is just the beginning. This was a team on the up. Now, we’re back at the top table.

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Here’s a look back at an unforgettable campaign…


BEST GAME

No contest.

The Champions League semi-final second leg recovery against Barcelona will go down in club, and indeed football, folklore. Going into the game 3-0 down from the first leg and without Mo Salah and Roberto Firmino, it was over.

Comebacks like this just do not happen – unless Liverpool are involved.

AC Milan, Borussia Dortmund and now FC Barcelona. The best club in the world and the best player in history, Lionel Messi, were made to look ordinary.

Luis Suarez and Philippe Coutinho were given a stark reminder of what they left behind. If anyone ever doubts the Anfield factor and the idea of its “famous European nights”, remind them of this game.

Shoutout, too, for Trent Alexander-Arnold for coming of age and turning heads across the continent with his moment of genius from THAT corner…

 


BEST GOAL

Aesthetically, it was Salah’s against Chelsea.

He had ended a run of six games without scoring in the previous outing and demonstrated here the old adage that form is temporary, class is permanent, helping secure a convincing win in a fixture seen beforehand as a potential banana skin.

And what a way to end it! A stunning strike which reminded everyone of the brilliance of our Egyptian King.

However, in terms of a favourite goal, it’s hard to look past Divock Origi’s 96th-minute winner against Everton, for three reasons: it clinched a dramatic Merseyside derby victory; it felt for the first time that maybe luck was on our side this season and we could make a serious title push and, best of all, it was absolutely hilarious. Cheers, Jordan Pickford!

Honourable mentions to Sturridge v Chelsea, Mane’s first away to Bayern Munich and, of course, Origi’s second against Barca.


 

BEST MOMENT

When Jordan Henderson raised the Champions League trophy aloft in Madrid, there was a outpouring of so many emotions for every Reds fan. Joy, pride and relief, to name but a few.

Like Tottenham, we had shown lots of promise over recent seasons, but were still waiting for that first big moment of glory. This was vindication for the work Klopp was doing. For all the progress that had been made, managers and teams are judged on silverware, and now we have this success to point to as undeniable evidence that we are, once again, one of the big boys.

Prior to the second leg against Barcelona, the season was in real danger of ending with an anti-climax and thoughts of what might have been.

Instead, Ol’ Big Ears returning to its favourite English destination was the very least we deserved.


WHAT NOW?

This cannot be a one-off. We need to build on this.

After Istanbul, there was one FA Cup triumph the following season, before a sole League Cup win in 13 years.

We need to be clinching silverware on a regular basis and there is no reason why we shouldn’t. We have the squad, we have the manager, we have the owners.

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Now, we also have the winning experience. Everything is in place for more success in the years to come.

Let’s make it happen. Let’s get that Premier League title. Let the good times roll.

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