Back in the glory days... but they might be back.
Last season saw youngsters such as John Flanagan, Martin Kelly, Jay Spearing and Jonjo Shelvey get their first consistent runs of appearances for Liverpool thanks to Kenny Dalglish's faith in youngsters. His faith wasn't misplaced. None of the mentioned youngsters made any noticeable mistakes, in fact, there were stand-out debut outings for Martin Kelly and John Flanagan. The future looks bright, thanks to word from Melwood, and the players above.
So, what can Liverpool expect from the next few seasons? This season I think a top four finish would be the realistic, achievable aim, but what does the future hold? What expectations should we, as fans, have?
Liverpool need to be in the European elite competition, the UEFA Champions League. Needless to say, the Europa League can no longer cater to expectation.
Our owner -who deserves all the congratulations in the world for steadying the Liverpool ship- is leaning back in a counterfeit of perfect ease, in the picture you see. While he seems to be relaxed, his facial expression reveals a slight flicker of desire there, which is exactly what Liverpool FC needs. Determination, dedication, results.
While Liverpool have been frowned upon by many following a horrible second half display against Sunderland, a 1-1 draw is not the worst of results. Actually, it leaves Liverpool in joint fifth not that it means anything yet, of course.
We must not forget that Sunderland are not a bad team, new signings (in particular Wes Brown) have given all Black Cat fans a reason to be optimistic. Also, Arsenal and Chelsea were held to draws, so it's not like Liverpool have fallen behind any top-four contenders.
Who should be the next Liverpool captain?
Should Liverpool produce more of the saturday's first half display, Champions League football next season is very possible.
I would also expect another couple of signings valued around the £20 million mark, which is a necessity if Liverpool are to climb the mountain that is the Premier League table. Sadly, I also expect a star player to leave.
Luis Suarez is a loyal player, and I think he will stay, should Liverpool continue to improve. However Andy Carroll, and Jordan Henderson may all be subject to a move away from Anfield. Jordan Henderson has looked rather isolated on the Anfield pitch, and the ex-Sunderland man may well be plying his trade elsewhere later.
Andy Carroll is young, and always improving, and I just have the feeling that in a couple of seasons, if Carroll maximises his potential, another big club will come calling, and Andy may well leave, but I hope I'm wrong.
Another cause for players leaving, is the fact that our youngsters look very talented. Coady, Suso and Sterling should be given runs in cup competitions this season, and I expect them to be integrated into the Liverpool Starting XI within three seasons.
The last thing fans should expect is the inevitable, the change in captaincy coming soon. Personally, I haven't given the matter a great deal of thought until now, and when the armband is moved on, in a couple of seasons, two men stick out for contenders. They are new signing Luis Suarez and Pepe Reina.
Luis Suarez captained Ajax, and has already shown all the traits of a born leader. However, the man I would like to see captain, is our current No. 1. Dedicated, experienced and frankly brilliant, Reina would deserve the honour.