The first goal this month came from absolutely nothing. There was Luis Suarez, the ballerina waltzing through an awestruck United defence with his sheer unpredictability. Leaving four defenders dead static in their tracks, Suarez meticulously sunk a toe into the lower regions of a ball. Van der Sar gasped in horror at the sight of that ball, slipping through beneath his legs and beyond his reach.. far, far away.
A grateful Dirk Kuyt needed no invitation, slotting the ball into an open net at close range. Filled with angst, Van der Sar dashed to the referee to remonstrate for reasons unknown, but to no avail. As Suarez and Kuyt wheeled away in celebration, a realisation hit. Luis Suarez is set to be that new golden boy whom Liverpool fans will adorn to on their back of their shirts.
Such was Suarez’s craft of precision, all Kuyt needed to do was to lay the finishing touch with venom. Such was Suarez’s resilience, he was a menace and a terror for United’s defence all day long. Such was his effervescent impact, the superlatives rolling off our tongues are running dry.
Javier Hernandez’s consolation in the 92nd minute did little to dampen spirits. Suarez’s seemingly seamless transition has lit up the eyes of fans still smarting from a hastened Torres’ departure. As Suarez integrates into life at his new surroundings, Torres continues to cut his sorry figure down south.
Soon, it was back to business as two Europa fixtures which could critically define our aspirations for Europe loomed ahead. Faced with a daunting trip into the trenches of the unknowns, we arrived at one of the world’s most curious stadiums, with chunks of rock overlooking this cave, stone aged stadium.
Yet, despite the labours of our record signing Andy Carroll, Liverpool were so devoid of inspiration and creativity. Someone commented that it was the equivalent to watching the World’s Paint-Drying Championships – no movement, nothing. A solidarity penalty strike from the hosts separated the two sides, with Kenny showing displeasure to the Reds’ performance.
The mantra ‘time will always unravel a story’ stood firm, unwavering. The following week, another lacklustre performance booted the Reds out of the Europa League, putting all hopes of silverware on hold.
This prompted fans to discuss whether an absence in Europe’s premier competition could serve the Reds well – at least it would allow us to reflect, reinvigorate and reinvent a new future. And on that basis, I believe that it could potentially be a blessing in disguise.
The Stadium of Light beckoned, with harbours of resentment over a beach ball which separated both sides in last season’s corresponding fixture. This time however, a huge chunk of luck favoured Liverpool. What should have never been a penalty was given.. but ah.. there were more pages to be turned, more magic to be unfolded.
And who else but Suarez? Looking as if he was dribbling casually towards the area, he blasted the ball past the line from that angle. Shouldn’t it be mathematically impossible? Such expertise and ingenuity conjured up by the super Suarez just killed off the game at that instant.
John Henry, the quiet thinker, later lavished praise on Suarez being ‘a heck of a player’. Unbowing to the pressures of keeping things behind closed doors, John urged for the understanding of the Liverpool Way – when questioned on how things were shaping up in the upper echelons of the club’s hierarchy.
And boy, when Liverpool did have something to announce, it was done in style. With the key personnel at the club now firmly in place, Ian Ayre and Damien Comolli are set to play a big part in moulding our return to our old days. The next, surely, is Kenny’s appointment onto a full-time basis.
Despite our embarrasing bow out of the Europa League, we march on. The future’s bright and everyone is rowing towards the same direction. We’re glad that finally, a sense of normalcy and unity has returned to the airs of Melwood. We wait with anticipation, and we march on….
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