The long wait is finally over. Liverpool finally won their first-ever Premier League title after Chelsea’s recent 2-1 win over second-placed Manchester City.
As a result, Jurgen Klopp’s men have opened up an unassailable 23-point lead over the Sky Blues, thereby ending the title race. It’s been a long wait of 30 years for Liverpool fans to finally get their hands on the coveted league title.
The Reds have come close on many occasions (Steven Gerrard we’re looking at you) but never got over the line until this season. The man in the Liverpool dugout deserves a lot of credit for finally ending the club’s wait for their 19th league title.
Ever since his arrival in 2015, Jurgen Klopp has revolutionized the club, including plenty of chopping and changing in the playing XI.
To look at just how far Liverpool have come under the German tactician, we will take a look at the team that he inherited against the team he built to end the league drought.
Jurgen Klopp’s first XI:
Simon Mignolet (Goalkeeper)
Currently, at the books of Club Brugge, Simon Mignolet played for the Reds 204 times during his stint from 2013-2019, before being sold to the Belgian club ahead of this season.
Nathaniel Clyne (Right-back)
The Englishman was signed by Liverpool from Southampton in the summer of 2015, and since then, he’s made 103 appearances for the club. But with the emergence of Trent Alexander-Arnold, Nathaniel Clyne will soon become a free agent.
Martin Skrtel (Centre-back)
Martin Skrtel spent eight years on Merseyside between 2008 and 2016, making 320 appearances, but could only win a solitary League Cup in the 2011-12 season during his stint with the Reds. The Slovakian currently plies his trade for Turkish club Istanbul Basaksehir.
Mamadou Sakho (Centre-back)
After starring with Paris Saint-Germain earlier in his career, Mamadou Sakho joined Liverpool in 2013, and in his four years with the club, the Frenchman racked up a total of 80 appearances before joining Crystal Palace in 2017. Since then, he’s been a mainstay at Selhurst Park.
Alberto Moreno (Left-back)
Alberto Moreno spent five seasons at Anfield from 2014 to 2019, wherein he amassed a total of 141 appearances for the Merseyside giants. The 27-year-old joined Villarreal last summer, due to the presence of Andy Roberston at left-back.
James Milner (Central midfielder)
One of the four players of Jurgen Klopp’s first playing XI at Liverpool who still remain at the club, James Milner has aged like fine wine and continues to be a handy player for the Reds, capable of filling in at multiple positions.
Lucas Leiva (Central midfielder)
Lucas Leiva played for the Reds for a whole decade between 2007 and 2017, making a total of 346 appearances during his stint on Merseyside. Later, he departed for SS Lazio and still remains a key player for the Serie A outfit.
Emre Can (Central midfielder)
The all-action German midfielder starred for Liverpool between 2014-2018. He left the club on a free transfer to join Juventus but was subsequently frozen out of the Italian club. Currently, he’s back in his native country with Bundesliga giants Borussia Dortmund.
Adam Lallana (Attacking midfielder)
One of the three Southampton players who joined the Reds in the summer of 2015, Adam Lallana has been a loyal servant of the club, making a total of 178 appearances till date. Soon, the 32-year-old will become a free agent, alongside former teammate Nathaniel Clyne.
Philippe Coutinho (Attacking midfielder)
Under Jurgen Klopp, Philippe Coutinho developed into a world-class playmaker, but ever since he left Anfield for Barcelona in January 2018, Coutinho’s career has stalled. After an underwhelming loan spell at Bayern Munich, the Brazilian will return to the Camp Nou again, but his future remains up in the air.
Divock Origi (Striker)
The Belgian striker continues to serve as an understudy to Roberto Firmino, having joined the club in 2014. Divock Origi put pen to paper on a new deal last summer, thereby extending his contract until the summer of 2024.
Here’s how Jurgen Klopp’s first Liverpool XI lined up:
Jurgen Klopp’s Premier League-winning XI
Alisson Becker (Goalkeeper)
Signed from AS Roma in 2018, Alisson has quickly established himself as one of the best goalkeepers in the Premier League, helping Liverpool win the Champions League last season and the league title in the current campaign.
Trent Alexander-Arnold (Right-back)
One of the most dynamic full-backs in world football at the moment, Trent Alexander-Arnold is a homegrown talent, who plays like a defender but has the soul of a winger. He’s been crucial in the Reds’ recent success and is a future superstar.
Joe Gomez (Centre-back)
The young Englishman has been with the Anfield club for five years now but is showing his true colours in the past two seasons or so. Alongside Virgil van Dijk, Joe Gomez has forged a formidable partnership at the heart of Liverpool’s defence.
Virgil van Dijk (Centre-back)
Virgil van Dijk is arguably the most influential signing made by the club in recent years, with the Dutchman single-handedly helping Liverpool address their defensive woes. He’s fast, tall, strong, and is the perfect modern-day centre-back by all means necessary. It would be hard to imagine how far the Reds could have come without him in the team.
Andy Robertson (Left-back)
Signed from Hull-city for the prize of peanuts in 2017, Andy Robertson has proven to be the bargain buy of recent years. The Scottish full-back is equally efficient in both attack and defence and is one of the pillars of success of the current squad.
Fabinho (Central midfielder)
After starring in Monaco’s dynamic team, Fabinho joined Liverpool in 2018. He took some time to adapt to Jurgen Klopp’s style, but now, the Brazilian is a key cog in the Liverpool juggernaut.
Georginio Wijnaldum (Central midfielder)
The Netherlands international might not get the due credit that he deserves, but Gini Wijnaldum is a key part of the squad without whom, the team would surely struggle to command games in midfield.
Jordan Henderson (Central midfielder)
The skipper is another player who works tirelessly without getting his due credit. Jordan Henderson is a true leader on and off the pitch and continues to be a role model for the next generation of Reds’ teenagers
Sadio Mane (Left-wing)
Since joining from Southampton in 2016, the Senegalese player has developed into a lethal forward, capable of both scoring goals and creating them for fun. Without Sadio Mane’s tireless running, the team would have struggled to break down opposition sides who tend to sit deep.
Mohamed Salah (Right-wing)
The Egyptian king, crown piece of Liverpool’s attacking triumvirate, Mohamed Salah continues to break records for fun, season after season since signing from AS Roma in 2017. He’s their talisman and marquee man on the pitch who lets his game do the talking.
Roberto Firmino (Striker)
The man who makes this attacking trident tick, Roberto Firmino is like the glue that holds his team together. The Brazilian leads the press from the front and finds spaces between the lines to enable those around him to thrive and score for fun. He’s perhaps one of the most selfless forwards in modern football.
Here’s how Jurgen Klopp’s Premier League-winning XI lined up:
All stats courtesy: Transfermarkt.co.in