Liverpool drew 2-2 with Aston Villa at Anfield yesterday to remain fourth in the Premier League.
However, with arch-rivals Everton still to play on Monday, the Reds may soon find themselves fifth in the Premier League table.
Talk of winning the Premier League title should now be put on the backburner. The Reds are now eight points behind league leaders Arsenal. The Merseysider’s should concentrate on clinching a Champions League spot instead.
Liverpool may have had a chance of claiming the Premier League title if the teams around them were not so strong. Arsenal, Manchester City and Chelsea are all top teams and just keep winning their games.
Then there are Everton and Tottenham, who also just keep picking up points. It would be very difficult for the Reds to finish above all of those teams.
What Liverpool do possess is the arguably the most deadly strike-partnership in the Premier League. Daniel Sturridge and Luis Suarez both had a hand in the Reds coming back from two goals down against Villa yesterday.
Liverpool are second highest scorers in the Premier League, with only Manchester City scoring more goals than the Reds in the top-flight.
Unfortunately for Liverpool the rest of their team is not of the same standard as their strike-force. The rest of the team is not poor, but they are certainly not world-class. The Reds have proved in recent games that they are not strong enough in defence, conceding some really poor goals.
Brendan Rodgers team have conceded five goals in their last two games, but still managed to collect four points from those two encounters, largely down to Sturridge and Suarez’s presence in the team. If the rest of the Liverpool team were at the same standard of their strikers then Liverpool would be a major danger in the Premier League title race.
In many ways Liverpool are victims of their own success this season. They started the season in a strong manner and that good start lead to raised expectations among supporters. The Reds were always unlikely to go from finishing seventh in the Premier League and winning the title in a season.
Liverpool fans in recent years have had to become more realistic with their expectations and I believe most Reds fans would have taken a Champions League place at the start of the season. I doubt that many really thought Brendan Rodgers side would challenge for the Premier League title this season.
Realistically the Reds need to now look to consolidate their place in the top four. That will not be easy, as Everton have a very winnable game away at West Brom on Monday night. If Roberto Martinez’s team does in fact claim victory the Toffees will move above Liverpool in the league table.
Both Everton and Tottenham are in good form and it now seems like a three horse race for that fourth spot, if of course Manchester United cannot resurrect their season. It is anybody’s guess who will finish in that fourth spot.
Liverpool are currently in possession, but that fourth place has exchanged hands a lot in recent months and Tottenham are now level on points with the Reds, after their recent recover under Tim Sherwood.
Out of the Liverpool, Manchester United, Tottenham and Everton, the Reds are the favourites to finish in the Champions League places at odds of 1/1. United are odds of 9/4, Tottenham odds of 5/2, while Everton are odds of 4/1, despite having the chance of moving into fourth place on Monday night.
Liverpool have a fantastic chance of finishing in the top four and claiming a Champions League place, largely due to their fantastic strike-force of Suarez and Sturridge. I certainly would not be writing the Reds off finishing in the top four, but I think to claim the Premier League title this season would be very difficult.
Are Liverpool still Premier League title contenders?