Liverpool FC vs. Norwich: 5 Things the Reds Did Right in the 5-2 Victory
It was a tremendous display of teamwork, finishing and skill, as the Reds completely outplayed their opposition.
There were a number of positives to draw from the victory, and if Liverpool continue to do many of the things they did right against Norwich, they could well see plenty more wins this season.
Here are the top five.
5. Started Well
It took less than two minutes for Liverpool to take the lead through Luis Suarez, and, though Norwich hadn't even had a sustained period of possession, they were already facing an uphill battle.
Sure, the Reds scored often, but they also scored early, and it showed, with their opposition losing much of the spirit they have shown this season with little to fight for in the game.
Suarez's quick start was a main reason why Liverpool were able to win big. Starting well next week against Stoke could ensure another win for Brendan Rodgers and his men.
4. Improved Their Discipline
Through five games, Liverpool players had received nine yellow cards, two red cards and conceded three penalties.
But at Carrow Road, the disciplinary record was flawless.
With no flying, two-footed tackles, last-defender scrambles, or unnecessary dives, the Reds were able to stay out of the referee's book for the full 90 minutes.
This played a significant role in allowing the Reds to get the three points. Continuing to keep a good disciplinary record will be crucial for Liverpool in the remainder of the season.
3. Exploited the Hunger of Their Young Players
It is a well-known fact that, at any level of sports, young players are likely to be far hungrier than veterans. Brendan Rodgers has exploited that expertly this season.
The Liverpool starting XI against Norwich had three players under the age of 19, with seemingly established 17-year-old winger Raheem Sterling joined by 18-year-old midfielder Suso and 19-year-old defender Andre Wisdom, and they all impressed.
Sterling, making his 10th appearance, notched an assist on Liverpool's fifth goal, breaking free down the left and feeding Steven Gerrard in the middle. Suso and Andre Wisdom, both in their Premier League debuts, showed themselves to be very capable players and surely emerged as leading candidates for Rodgers' team sheets moving forward.
The hunger of those young players has been crucial for Liverpool. Continuing to make use of his talented pool of youngsters will be vital for Rodgers as the Reds move forward.
2. Bossed the Midfield
With Joe Allen, Steven Gerrard and Nuri Sahin (not to mention the injured Lucas Leiva), Liverpool might well have one of the strongest midfields in the Premier League.
And it showed against Norwich.
The Reds dominated, claiming 67 percent of possession, completing 700 passes to Norwich's 320 and playing their opposition out of the match.
Football is a team game, and when one side is able to control the middle, it allows the rest of the team to dominate in their areas as well. Bossing the midfield was a key reason why Liverpool were able to beat Norwich so comprehensively and is a key to the club's continued success.
1. Took Their Chances
Liverpool have had big trouble finishing chances this season. But from Steven Gerrard to Nuri Sahin to Luis Suarez, the Reds' finishing was sublime against Norwich.
Over half of Liverpool's goals through six games this season came in the 5-2 win, and it was down to players finally making the most of good opportunities.
The rout was highlighted by a trio of outside-the-area goals from Luis Suarez, who, apart from a dreadful effort shortly before his second goal, finally brought it all together to record his second straight hat trick at Carrow Road.
Taking their chances five times was undoubtedly the main reason Liverpool were able to record their first win of the 2012-13 season and first league win under Brendan Rodgers.
If the team continues to finish like it did and Luis Suarez is anywhere near as good as he was today in the future, that win should be the first of many.
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