While against the current run of form, perhaps it was a little predictable that Tottenham Hotspur would show up against United behind Ryan Mason’s (second) first match in charge. There were some tough moments for sure, but overall it was the best the squad has looked in a long time, especially in the second half.
For those of us who would not be so sad without European football next season, a draw was the perfect result, and the same could be said for this Sunday. Liverpool has been a thorn in Spurs’ side for the past five seasons, and the loss last November was a reality check after a solid pair of draws last year, but phoning it in is not an option here.
The Reds are undergoing a tough campaign themselves but are on a bit of a surge as of late. Any sort of result would be another decent outcome under Mason’s lead, and that suddenly feels possible coming off of Thursday’s effort. It never comes easily for Tottenham against Liverpool, though, so tread carefully.
Liverpool (7th, 53 pts) vs. Tottenham Hotspur (t-5th, 54pts)
Date: Sunday, April 30
Time: 11:30 am ET, 4:30 pm UK
Location: Anfield, Liverpool, England
TV: USA Network (USA), Sky Sports Main Event (UK)
This has certainly not been the season Liverpool hoped for, and with United and Newcastle continuing to win, the odds of Champions League qualification grow slimmer and slimmer. The Reds are not going down without a fight, however, winning three straight after taking just two points from the previous four matches.
Liverpool is actually fourth in goal difference this season, but that has not always translated to the desired outcome. This is in part due to some extremely lopsided results, including the 7-0 laugher against United and landslides against Bournemouth and Leeds. This is an up-and-down squad that ultimately has the talent but not the consistency, meaning anything is on the table this weekend.
- Nov 2022: 1-2 loss, home (Kane)
Playing Liverpool is just really annoying, since Spurs seem to always get in their own way. That definitely was the case in the reverse fixture, and a second-half charge was not enough after some early errors. On Thursday the outcome was a little better, but still the general themes are far too similar.
Hopefully this is another chance for players like Richarlison and Pedro Porro to head into next season on the upswing, as neither have had the introduction to North London they envisioned. Seeing Heung-Min Son get on the scoresheet is another plus, and perhaps there is still value to be gained from the run-in.
This team still has plenty of flaws, including a struggling midfield and a questionable back line, but Mason understands these weaknesses and is as able as any manager to work around them. Wholesale changes are likely off the menu, but it was clear there was a difference under him compared to Antonio Conte and Cristian Stellini. Another good 90 minutes would be a big statement from the interim manager.