Rival managers commentators and pundits have indicated that the league leaders have had luck when it comes to injuries.
There has been plenty said behind the reasons for Liverpool’s improbable march to the Premier League title, with the Reds currently five points clear of Chelsea going into their clash with them at Anfield this weekend, and just the three games remaining.
Some have said the absence of European football from Anfield this season has been a big advantage as they will play fewer than 50 games this season, and that they have not had as many injuries.
But if we look at the Liverpool team this season, they have had their fair share of injuries. A glaring example will have been the 2-1 defeat to Chelsea at Stamford Bridge in December – Liverpool were down to the bare bones over the festive period.
Having lost a breath taking game at the Etihad Stadium three days earlier, it was always going to be hard for that Liverpool team to bounce back.
In a bid to change the game, Brendan Rodgers brought on Brad Smith for his first team debut. In a game as big as that, you have to be low on players you would normally consider for the first team.
Liverpool, like other clubs have had their notable absences and injuries this season. The most high profile of course was Luis Suarez’s absence as he missed the first five league games because of his ban for biting Branislav Ivanovic towards the end of last season.
But there have been others. Daniel Sturridge missed eight consecutive Premier League games between the end of November and the start of January, and given that he has racked up 20 Premier League goals this season, he was a big loss during that period – and the injury he has suffered which resulted in him missing yesterday’s win over Norwich City.
Mamadou Sakho was ruled out from December until March with a hamstring injury, Daniel Agger has been in and out of the side, Glen Johnson had a spell on the sidelines, Steven Gerrard missed key fixtures over the Christmas period.
Jose Enrique has been absent for much of the season but Liverpool, Joe Allen and Lucas Leiva have also had their injury problems. Jon Flanagan also missed a spell this season and Philippe Coutinho missed nearly two months in the first half of the season.
To say Liverpool haven’t had their share of injuries is untrue. Their squad is still a small one and will need to be strengthened when they compete in the Champions League next season, but the bulk of the players have returned at the right time of the season for the business end of the campaign – which has coincided with their 11 game winning run in the Premier League.
Yes, in that sense they have been lucky, but they have had to cope at times without key members with the squad, and they managed to keep themselves in touch at the top.