I could not write this yesterday for fear of it being tempered too much by emotion. A night’s sleep has done little though, to quell this feeling of utter joy. It is only one game, but what a game and what a result!
Every man in red and one in yellow stood up to be counted. From the ever dependable Reina through the oft lamentable Lucas, up to our hero Torres, every player played their part in a fully deserved victory against our bitterest of rivals. The contribution of the 12th man is also worth a mention. To hear Anfield in full voice is a pleasure all too rare these days. As fans, we cannot question players’ desire against the lesser teams if we cannot lift our game either! Fans feed off players and vice versa. This is worth remembering for our next home game against Birmingham, a fortnight from tonight, especially when we have a particularly bad record in Monday night games!
One swallow and all that, but it was important to stop the rot. We must now build momentum. Unfortunately, our next game is away to the Gunners in the Carling Cup. A bad result there and all the confidence from yesterday’s victory could ebb away. Rafa needs to select a strong team for this fixture. Let’s hope he does.
Before I wrap up, I must pay particular attention to 2 players. As possibly his biggest detractor over the last couple of seasons, I must praise the performance of Lucas yesterday. His work rate was outstanding, you just need to look at his run in the 96th minute to set up Ngog for his well taken goal as proof of his athletic ability. He did not put a boot out of place and I, for one, hope he is about to prove me wrong in all of my previous criticisms of this young man from Brazil.
Benayoun, in my mind was worthy of MOM rather than Torres but it is neither of these players I wish to write about. Jamie Carragher has had a difficult few weeks. Yesterday, he appeared to be back at his best. Our defensive line was playing quite deep for the full 90 minutes and this is where Carra functions best. He delights in putting his body on the line for our club and where better to make a last ditch block or tackle then on the edge of your own 18 yard box. Well played Carra and hopefully you have silenced your critics for a while at least.
Congratulations to all our heroes in red, but do not anyone get carried away. Sunday’s result meant nothing more than 3 points in the league, even if they are probably the most psychologically important 3 points we will earn all season.