For almost 20 years the Liverpool faithful have been waiting for Premiership success, whilst fellow big four clubs Manchester United, Chelsea and Arsenal have won the title 16 times between them in that period.Ã‚Â Ã‚Â
The 2008/09 season has offered hope to Liverpool fans that the long wait to add another Premiership title to their already imposing tally of 18 may finally be over.
Unfortunately for Rafa Benitez and his team, Manchester United stands in the way. The Premier League juggernaut has opened up a five point gap on the lads from Merseyside, after thrashing Fulham in their remaining game in hand. Ã‚Â
Manchester United has won 10 Premier League titles since Liverpool won their last in 1990.Ã‚Â The Red Devils are aiming for their third in a row which would, ironically see them tie the Reds as the most successful clubs in League history. Ã‚Â
Rival coach Arsene Wenger of Arsenal believes Man United success is a mere formality, describing the league leaders as Ã¢â‚¬ËœuntouchableÃ¢â‚¬â„¢.
The Arsenal Coach is not alone, as major UK betting agency Paddy Power has Manchester United at an unbackable 1/6 with Liverpool next best at 7/1. Ã‚Â
Liverpool stalwart Jamie Carragher is upbeat that his side can thwart their rivals telling the clubÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s website Ã¢â‚¬Å“a lot of people said at the start of the season that we needed to be in the title race at the end and at least be in with a fighting chance.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“Now hopefully we can go one step further and win this title.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“There are still a lot of games to go, so itÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s important everyone at the club remains calm.Ã¢â‚¬Â
In an ominous sign for Liverpool, Manchester United Coach, Sir Alex Ferguson believes his club has the depth to cope with any challenges, although he is acutely aware that Ã¢â‚¬Ëœanything can happenÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ citing his clubÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s collapse in 1998 when Arsenal bridged a 12-point gap to win the league.
The reigning Premier and Champions League title holders are still in the hunt for an unprecedented five major trophies this season, if they are successful in capturing two or three of those they will surely be crowned as the best in FergusonÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s tenure.
For Liverpool they have bridged the gap and overtaken Arsenal and Chelsea but the league title is their priority.
Both Ferguson and Benitez have thrown down the gauntlet to their respective sides demanding a flawless close to the season.Ã‚Â The title race could very well come down to March 14th when the two teams meet at Old Trafford.
By Kate West