It was hard to know what to make of Arsenal at Anfield on Saturday.
On the one hand, they appeared to have an actual plan and a reasonable idea of how to execute it.
On the other, the plan itself was all a bit bottom-of-the-table. Is that a bad thing given the way results have gone for us up there for the last load of years? Maybe not, but by halftime there were plenty of questions for Unai Emery to answer and he didn’t seem to how to do that.
Would he change the team, or system, up or stick with his plan and hope that one of the next times Pepe managed to get through he’d find his composure in front of goal? It is, of course, worth noting that had he not fluffed his lines twice Arsenal could have went into the break ahead, but let’s not beat up a youngster in his first big match for a new club with a £72m price tag hanging round his neck.
Of course, it didn’t matter because David Luiz, proving that it is indeed a job requirement if you want to be an Arsenal centreback that you have to be a fucking idiot, threw the game away within seven minutes of the restart.
David Luiz is gonna David Luiz, I guess. We play him, we have to factor these things in, but we are currently trying to sell another centreback for the same sort of idiocy.
Mo Salah made sure we knew it was over with half an hour left.
There were, of course, bright-spots. Joe Willock nutmegging Trent Alexander-Arnold one of those, but any delusions we had following Arsenal’s best start in 10 years that this season was going to be a much smoother ride were slapped right out of us.
The match, as a whole, was enthralling. It was watching Arsenal as they are now against who they aim to be. That has to be remembered. Liverpool weren’t this juggernaut when Jurgen Klopp had only been there 12 months.
Despite the individual brainfarts at the back, you could tell we were better. We seemed less prone to panic and more focused. Mostly. Well, sometimes. We kept going in ways we have often not as Lucas Torreira’s goal showed. We looked instantly more potent with Lacazette on the pitch begging the question why he only got 10 minutes.
In the end, the European Champions and Premier League runners-up with a record points total were too much for the team that finished fifth and fell apart in the Europa League final.
That should come as a shock to no-one.
Besides, with a 5-1 last season and a 3-1 this, we’re nailed on for a 1-1 next season.