I guess for a short answer, it’s just 2020 things; but all in all, it’s the beautiful game simply taking its course.
If you have no idea what I’m talking about, then you really missed out on not one, but two eventful games that truly lived up to the spooky month of October. The matches I’m talking about are Manchester United vs. Tottenham Hotspur and Liverpool vs. Aston villa.
Starting off chronologically, the Lilywhites traveled to Old Trafford after having incredible form leading up to the match following the controversial draw against Newcastle United. Winning on penalties against London rivals Chelsea in the Carabao Cup Tuesday and securing their place in the Europa League group stage after defeating Maccabi Haifa 7-2, everything was going well for Jose Mourinho’s team… until the very first minute of the match when they gave away a penalty.
While I thought the Red Devils taking the early lead would be the beginning of the end in terms of Spurs’ form, Tottenham were very quick to respond with a Tanguy Ndombélé equalizer, followed by braces from Heung-Min Son and Harry Kane with United’s Anthony Martial getting a red card in the 28th minute. Everything was easily going Tottenham’s way after finishing the first half 4-1. I mean for Christ’s sake, even Serge Aurier scored against the Red Devils in the second half; that’s basically how you know it was game, set and match. Shoutout to Harry Maguire for being such a good defender to merit United’s £80 million payment (I mean that very sarcastically).
This was just clinical soccer, or as Jose Mourinho would put it, “This is football heritage.” This match reminded me back when the league had “Barclays” in its name in terms of high-energy games and pure upsets. I would also heavily argue that Tottenham’s current form has to do with Mourinho’s project at the North London club. With their recent signings of Matt Doherty, Pierre-Emile Højbjerg and Sergio Reguilón to name a few, they’ve all added the depth and chemistry the club have long needed to compete. With the international break this week, this will be perfect for Tottenham to rest up and continue their form when soccer returns, especially for players like Son and Ndombélé. On top of that, Gareth Bale will be fit enough to play once the break’s over, and I just don’t think the league will be ready for the Son, Kane, and Bale trio. You heard it here first.
While Man U fans were saddened by their defeat, Liverpool easily cheered them up by living up to their motto of “You’ll Never Walk Alone,” and somehow lost 7-2 to Villa. Yeah, the current champions of England were defeated by a side who barely managed to stay in the league last season. 2020 has been an extremely weird year.
While I don’t really have much to say about the result as Liverpool has embarrassed themselves enough, this should really be a wakeup call for Jurgen Klöpp that anything is possible. After gloating for so long about being the champions of England and of Europe the year before, the Reds are off to a rocky start this season while their Merseyside rivals Everton are on top of the league (also really weird to see). To let someone like Ollie Watkins score a hat trick against you is just shambolic, and I hope that Adrián doesn’t start for Liverpool for a while. Not only him, but Joe Gomez was also just horrendous in Sunday’s game and needs to be on the bench as well.
These two games just go to show how crazy yet beautiful the sport of soccer can be; and because it’s the year 2020 and anything can happen this year, fans can expect similar results in future games. As Patrice Evra once said, “I love this game!”