Liverpool win perfectly timed ahead of friendly fixture list

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Years down the line, when the 2014/15 season is analysed, many could look to the 2-1 win Liverpool secured at home to West Brom – their first victory in four outings – as the moment the Reds’ campaign finally started. The manner of their performance will long be forgotten.

This was not, by any means, the Liverpool of last season. The vibrancy of their play in that runners-up term seems set to be absent until Daniel Sturridge returns, yet three points were gained, which in some respects was more important anyway.

The Jordan Henderson-sealed win leaves Brendan Rodgers’ men just one-point off fourth place and a look at their Premier League fixtures indicates that what has been a tiny dung ball of momentum could be rolled into something far larger in the coming weeks.

According to Ladbrokes, the Merseyside club are still fancied to preserve their Champions League status next season, with the bookie pricing them up at 10/11 to finish in the qualification places this term.

If that’s to be the case, then Steven Gerrard and co need to find their incisive cohesion sooner rather than later and the club captain will be confident of doing so over the next stretch of winnable games.

A trip to face QPR is next on the menu for the Anfield side, with home games against Hull and Swansea to follow.

Although the Welsh outfit are currently flying high, the game presents a perfect opportunity for Liverpool to leapfrog them in the table.

Beyond that two-game home stand, the Reds have a trip to Alan Pardew’s beleaguered Newcastle outfit before Chelsea come to play.

Targeting 12 points from those four pre-Mourinho matches should be Liverpool’s target, with the chance to relocate their verve a real possibility.

Two Champions League encounters with Real Madrid present the possibility of upsetting that mission, or it could just inspire a heightened performance.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.

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Matt Wiggins

No idyllic sound comes close to leather on willow for Matt, whose previous experience includes stints with Spin Magazine and Surrey County Cricket Club. It's not just cricket that interests him though, with football, golf, tennis and any American sport not played on ice all high on his list of favourites.