Football

Liverpool risk dropping out of title contention

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Consecutive 2-1 away losses to title rivals Manchester City and Chelsea meant that Liverpool went from being top at Christmas, to fifth on New Year's day.

This is indicative of how tight and close it is this year, and the final run towards top spot will possibly produce the best ever sprint to the Barclay's Premier League finish line.

Liverpool lie in fourth spot with 39 points, just one ahead of their impressive city rivals Everton, and four behind third placed Chelsea.

After a tough and disappointing Christmas campaign, the Reds are ready for a swift return to the top of the table.

On January 12 Liverpool travel to the Britannia Stadium to take on a tenacious and hungry Stoke City side.

Stoke have steadily improved to 12th place on the log with 22 points after a struggling start to manager Mark Hughes' tenure.

Liverpool need a win if they are to prove their title-winning credentials. Many believe they are not ready, but any team top at Christmas is ready and history can prove that.

It is about consistency for the Reds. Captain fantastic Steven Gerrard is back in action after weeks out with a hamstring injury, and now the Kop await England striker Daniel Sturridge to make his first appearance for Liverpool since getting the equalising goal against Everton in a thrilling 3-3 draw in November.

Sturridge has been sidelined with an ankle injury and he is expected back for the Britannia clash.

A week later, the Reds host Aston Villa at Anfield. They too lie in mid-table a point and a position above Stoke City. Manager Paul Lambert has been sitting happy in the Villain's hot seat after a torrid time of it since joining last year from Norwich City.

Perhaps the poor form of an ex-major title rival in Manchester United will give Liverpool hope that at the very least they can secure a Champion's League spot.

For Liverpool fans, what they are currently seeing is quiet unbelievable. Surely a fast start such as this can warrant at least a fourth place?

With a tireless Everton, strong Tottenham, and a potentially improving Manchester United, Liverpool will hope they keep above that water and let the three above them drop to the dangerous depths.

As it stands, Arsenal are looking imperious at the top on 45 points. A zippy and deadly Manchester City will not back down in second, a point behind the Gunners.

A point behind the Citizens lies Chelsea on 43 points. Nobody seems to be backing down and only the very strongest will stay afloat. This season it seems just making fourth will feel like winning the Premier League title.

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Topics:
Liverpool
Premier League
Football

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This article has been written by a member of the GiveMeSport Writing Academy and does not represent the views of GiveMeSport.com or SportsNewMedia. The views and opinions expressed are solely that of the author credited at the top of this article. GiveMeSport.com and SportsNewMedia do not take any responsibility for the content of its contributors.

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