Liverpool - The key to an unbeaten run in the Premier League, how long can it continue?

Anfield Pitch

Liverpool are top of the Premier League table, a point clear, and flying high under Brendan Rodgers this term. The Reds are unbeaten in their four games so far.

Monday night’s trip to Swansea in the game Rodgers’ side drew 2-2 with the hosts at the Liberty Stadium sees the Merseysiders take 10 points from their four fixtures this term.

Next up, Rodgers will have to prepare his squad for games against Southampton, Sunderland, Crystal Palace, Newcastle and West Brom – looking at the schedule, it’s completely conceivable that Liverpool could continue their unbeaten run through until November, possibly going nine or ten games without defeat.

However, as they say, there are no easy games in this league – and there really aren’t – we’ve seen the likes of Manchester City defeated at newly promoted Cardiff, Arsenal embarrassed at home by Aston Villa on opening day and champions Manchester United beaten at Anfield. There are no easy games in this league.

So what does it take to go on an unbeaten run, then? Firstly, it takes quality, strength and depth in the squad – something Rodgers has in abundance in his Reds side.

But that doesn’t explain City and Chelsea’s inconsistent form so far this term. Having a committed and motivated manager like Rodgers helps but Jose Mourinho and Manuel Pellegrini aren’t exactly no-hopers are they?

Perhaps it’s about form? That would make sense – look at Daniel Sturridge’s current form and that is clearly a huge boost for the whole team and the manager. Rodgers and his team can rely on Sturridge to come up with the goods at present and that gives the whole side confidence.

In contrast, look at Chelsea’s misfiring front men – Samuel Eto’o and Fernando Torres were terrible against Everton on Saturday and Chelsea lost the game – those two and Demba Ba are playing completely devoid of confidence at present. Torres has been playing without confidence pretty much since he arrived at Stamford Bridge almost three years ago.

Whilst form and confidence are certainly important, I think a large part of it is also belief and momentum – the manager can instill in his players confidence to go out and perform but they have to really believe they can do it.

Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger once said, “If you do not believe you can do it you have no chance at all.” Incidentally, the Gunners are unbeaten in three and they seem to have restored the right momentum to carry them through games.

When a team is winning and performing well, functioning as a unit, believing in themselves, believing in each other, they feel positive about themselves and positivity is sometimes a contagious thing. It’s an attitude – the positive thoughts manifest in the person’s actions and, thus, their ‘luck’ changes for the better. Jonjo Shelvey's assists on Monday night are a case in point.

Having a good manager like Brendan Rodgers is a huge part of Liverpool’s success at present, he has brought in quality reinforcements to compliment the quality he already had, he gives his players confidence and belief, brings them together, gets them working for each other and focusing positively on their long-term and short-term objectives.

You can see it in his players’ body language on the pitch – they trust him, they trust each other and they believe 100 per cent they can beat anyone on their day. That is the key to an unbeaten run in the Premier League – a positive mentality.

When you’re losing or underperforming, your head drops and it’s hard to find that extra gear, that belief, that confidence in yourself but, when you’re winning, you feel invincible – there is nothing that scares you. Right now Liverpool are playing without fear and they’re loving every minute on every game.

How long can Liverpool keep up their unbeaten run?

images: © MichaƂ Dubrawski, © Ben Sutherland

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