Liverpool manager’s commitment to domestic cups has been questioned but his delight at semi-final win was clear

To become a “true legend” at Liverpool, Pepijn Lijnders had claimed on the eve of the rearranged Carabao Cup semi-final, “you need to go for the national cups as well.” Jürgen Klopp’s assistant was not downplaying past glories but talking up the future of a Liverpool team that has evolved to the extent he expected it to punish Arsenal even without the cutting edge of Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mané. Lijnders was talking of Liverpool’s hunger too, and it appeared he had written the script.

A 2022 Carabao Cup winner’s medal will not define the Liverpool legacy of Trent Alexander-Arnold, Virgil van Dijk, Jordan Henderson or any other player who ended the club’s 30-year wait for a Premier League title and delivered a sixth European Cup to Anfield. But this Liverpool team should have more honours to its name. Six years without a Wembley appearance is too long for a squad of such talent. The desire to correct both flowed through a commanding victory at the Emirates Stadium where the experience in Klopp’s side toyed and tormented the youth of Arsenal. Their celebrations at Anfield a week ago did indeed prove premature.

Continue reading...