3 Talk Points for the Week of April 10 - 17

13th April 2023

Fresh from Easter Sunday's thriller versus Arsenal at , Liverpool find themselves with a full week between matches that don't include an break. That means they have a lot of time to train, look at videos, digest Sunday's match, and plan for Leeds on Monday.

Would we rather see them playing in the Champions League this week? Absolutely. The reality of the situation is, they aren't in European competitions anymore. They also don't have to worry about the FA Cup next weekend. Their sole focus is now on the Premier League.

In my opinion, the Reds should be using these days to focus on these for the Week:

Point 1 - Show Up on Time

Photo by Shaun Botterill/Getty Images

For me, one of the things that have consistently set the Reds back this season has been very poor starts to matches. This past weekend against was just the latest example of Liverpool giving up goals early and having to play from behind.

Arsenal bossed the first 30 minutes on Sunday and had 2 goals in less time than it takes to watch an episode of the Simpsons. If Liverpool want to finish this season strong, they are going to have to come out of the tunnel better prepared for a fight, not just against good sides like Arsenal, but struggling sides too, like Leeds.

Point 2 - Decide Whether Europe is An Option Next Year

Photo by JAVIER SORIANO / AFP) (Photo by JAVIER SORIANO/AFP via Getty Images

We talked earlier about missing midweek football this week. Liverpool must decide if they want to be in one of the European competitions next season. I know, you're saying of course they do. However, we may have to accept that it is likely not to be the Champions League.

I'm not saying they can't make it into the top 4, to qualify for the Champions League, I'm saying at this point, it's unlikely. Now they have to ask themselves whether or not they want to be in the or the relatively new Europa Conference League. 

In my opinion, the answer is yes in the first case, and no in the second. The Europa League is a prestigious tournament that has seen the likes of Barcelona and Manchester United grace its shores this year. Liverpool would need to finish 5th or 6th in the League to get there and that is within their grasp. 

If they don't qualify for the Champions League, the original recipe Europa League would be the next best thing. While the Europa League schedule is tougher than the Champions League, with games on Thursday nights instead of Tuesday or Wednesday, it is a competition worthy of the Reds' time.

In the case of the Europa Conference League, I'd say pass. I'm still not certain why UEFA started this competition, other than to make money and torture big clubs with far-flung matches in places like Azerbaijan or Moldova. Those matches are also played on Thursdays, which is a short turnaround from league matches on the weekends. 

While the original Europa League is a worthy tournament, the Conference League is a waste of time and club resources. I'm not going to say this competition is beneath Liverpool… But yeah, it's beneath Liverpool. 

Point 3 - Get 3 Points in Leeds

Photo by Catherine Ivill/Getty Images

The Reds haven't won from Anfield since the 17th of January in Wolverhampton. That was an match. Would you believe that Liverpool haven't won on the road in the since the 6th of November 2022?! 

They beat Tottenham in London that day but they haven't won an away league match in , yet. That is totally unacceptable and Monday night's game in Leeds must be the end of that drought. Leeds United are in 16th place with 29 points, which puts them 2 points out of the relegation spots.

Leeds got clobbered by a resurgent Crystal Palace, 5-1 at last weekend and the Reds need to continue their struggles. Monday night's match is the start of what should be a very easy stretch for Liverpool to complete this season. 

If the Reds want to have a chance of getting into the aforementioned “good” European competitions, they have to start taking all 3 points against teams they should be beating. Liverpool even with all its struggles this year should be beating Leeds.

Even still, one of Liverpool's low points at Anfield this season was the match against on the 29th of October. Crysencio Summerville scored in the 89th minute to steal 3 points at our house for the Lilywhites. The Reds need to take those points back out of Elland Road.
If Liverpool take care of these three things this week, they will set themselves up for a strong finish to the 2022-23 season. They will also start moving towards a more successful 2023-24.

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