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Liverpool: Are they still title contenders?

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Saturday saw Liverpool struggle to overcome an impressive Aston Villa side, coming back from 2-0 down to draw 2-2 at full time. 

The Merseyside giants saw a run of seven consecutive wins at home end, adding to an all over disappointing day with a poor performance from the team and skipper Steven Gerrard. On top of this they are waiting to hear if they have lost key-midfielder Lucas Leiva for what could be months with a knee injury, after limping out of Anfield on crutches.

The Reds have been storming the Premier League this season, consistently staying up in the top four with impressive results, prolific goal-scoring and a good depth in the squad. They have been right behind rivals Arsenal for some time, only recently dropping down to fourth place (potentially fifth if Everton win tonight) and only eight points from the top.

It's true they have not won the matches they should have due to poor defending in important games. Example being their 2-1 loss away to Chelsea or their near identical performance in a 2-1 loss away to Manchester City, but Arsenal veteran and current Liverpool player Kolo Touré believe they are still very much in the race for the title.

Speaking to reporters, Toure said: "We are still in that (title race) because every team can lose points. 

"What we have done so far no-one was expecting at the start of the season."

Which is very true. 

With a disappointing near-mid table finish for the last four seasons in a row, it is still hard to believe the five-time European champions could be returning to their former glory.

Their chances of winning the title now is an interesting thought to ponder, seeing as aforementioned Brazillian midfielder Leiva seems to be out for some time as well as other injuries in the squad, on top of the fact Brendan Rodgers is experimenting with long-serving captain Gerrard in a holding role he didn't seem to excel in on Saturday.

With this taken into account, I still think they stand a very good chance.

As Touré stated no one saw them doing this well so far, I feel that may be an indication that this season is destined to be full of surprises.

One huge positive the Reds have is the fact they are not in any European competition and only in one cup, meaning they have the upper hand over other top teams who are competing in the Champions League or even the Europa League. Better rested squads, always better prepared for the next match and a better chemistry between a more familiar set of players.

Let's also not forget the lethal "SAS" partnership that is Uruguayan magician Luis Suárez and England international Daniel Sturridge, which is not just one of the most prolific in the league - but in the whole of Europe.

There is, however, one thing I feel Liverpool could do to push for the title this season. With the decline in form from midfield maestro Coutinho and non-achievement of form from Spanish striker Iago Aspas, there is a lack of goals coming from anywhere else on the pitch apart from the two main strikers. 

Rodgers' men have been linked with Egyptian winger Mohamed Salah for some time now, this seems to be the answers to their European battle.

At only 21-years of age, Salah is prolific from the wing. Scoring in all competitions a goal amount a striker would be proud of and even chipping in with assists, the hard-to-mark speedster would add another person to the Reds' attack for the opposition to worry about.

It is still only halfway through the season and the Reds are flying high. With their remaining and most difficult games coming at home, it should definitely be a better performing half to the season than the last.

If they do sign who they need and tweak the odd glitch, Liverpool could pull off the biggest surprise of the season.

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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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