As Liverpool supporters celebrated their side going top of the Premier League table, where they could remain on Christmas Day, they applauded the opposing team's manager off the Anfield pitch.
It was a moment that said a lot; Liverpool supporters understanding the Bluebirds' fans frustrations.
Three years ago at Christmas, Liverpool were ninth, managed by Roy Hodgson, playing some of the most turgid football Anfield has ever witnessed—all courtesy of the nightmare ownership regime of Tom Hicks and George Gillett.
Now, should Arsenal fail to beat Chelsea on Monday night, Liverpool will be top of the league on Christmas Day for the first time since 2008—knowing that the last four teams to be in that position have gone on to win the Premier League title.
It's an incredible transformation and easy to forget. Every credit should go to owners Fenway Sports Group (FSG) and manager Brendan Rodgers.
Despite the elation of having just watched another Luis Suarez-inspired performance, Liverpool supporters were wise enough to acknowledge Mackay and Cardiff's fans. We know how it feels.
You know I said to just enjoy these #Suarez moments last week? Well we are living though a very special period for Liverpool, what a player!— Propaganda-Photo.com (@propagandaphoto) December 21, 2013
For Cardiff, they have their own version of Hicks and Gillett in Vincent Tan—an owner who many football supporters recognise as epitomising all that is wrong with modern football.
"Football without fans is nothing" is a campaign being run by Liverpool supporters at the moment. The travelling Cardiff fans made their voices heard, but sadly it could matter little if/when Tan removes the manager who has led the Welsh club to the top flight.
Perhaps Tan should have taken the opportunity to learn from Liverpool today—a club who have been transformed from head-to-toe by FSG, especially in the last two years.
Tan, as FSG have done, should recognise that they have a modern, bright, football coach who is capable of developing their football team. Rodgers is proving it and Mackay will certainly do so elsewhere should Tan sack the Scot.
Liverpool and their ownership have made some excellent moves of late; not least, of course, their handling of the Luis Suarez saga in the summer, following it up with the new contract he signed on Friday to make him the highest-paid player in the club's history.
FSG know quality and have shown they are prepared to put the money down in order to keep it.
Suarez killing teams like Ronaldo and Messi kill teams in La Liga. But this is Premier League. Hardest league in the world. 19 in 12.— Mootaz (@Mootaz_LFC) December 21, 2013
Suarez did not disappoint, providing another absolutely dominant display. His first goal was a superbly taken volley, his second goal—three minutes after selflessly assisting Raheem Sterling—was even better, curling in from the edge of the box.
The superlatives have all been used, the statistics and records are constantly having to be updated.
For now, all that matters for Liverpool is that they're top of the Premier League. Enjoy it.
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