For obvious reasons, there are always doubts heading into a game away against West Brom, regardless of form or Liverpool’s position in the table.
The well-drilled West Brom side Tony Pulis has constructed makes the Hawthorns an incredibly difficult place to go for any team in the Premier League nowadays, which is why Liverpool fans have good reason to celebrate Sunday’s 1-0 win as one of the most important results this season.
An ability to keep a clean sheet and overcome a packed defence without key attacking players marked progress and a reminder of how dedicated these players are to earning a top four spot.
During his assessment of the game, Jurgen Klopp told Liverpoolfc.com: ” With West Brom, it is not only set-pieces, they have really good footballers on the pitch and if you’re a little bit less aggressive then immediately they use their threat around set-pieces to play football because you don’t want to go in with real challenges.”
“That makes it really difficult, so you need to be at your highest concentration level – but we have been. In the first half, we didn’t play too good [in terms of] football and in the second half we did much better, but we kept the ball in the first half and didn’t let them be really part of the game.”
“In the second half, we did this much better after the goal. For us, it was very, very important because showing this concentration level until the end didn’t work each week in the last few months – but today, it was really good and I am happy about this.”
Organised and well-oiled sides like West Brom demand a certain attention to detail during training in the build up to the game. Liverpool had to match their discipline, their energy, their physicality in addition to finding a way of breaching a tight defensive unit. They succeeded in all and, in turn, produced one of the most mature and intelligent performances we have seen from them so far this season.
For a team dubbed as one dimensional following a disappointing start to 2017, it was a display in which Klopp’s men once again proved they could be aggressive, organised and still play the same exciting attacking football.