5 Things We Learned From Liverpool 1-2 Manchester United

Steven Gerrard’s Self Destruction Is Complete

And so off he goes, marching off into the Los Angeles sun with nothing but a grimace and stud marks left on Ander Herrera’s ankle.

Of course that is only metaphorically – Steven Gerrard will play for Liverpool again before he leaves the club in the summer – but the red card here was surely the final meaningful act of a Liverpool career in which he’s given so much, bar yet another act of redemption in the FA Cup.

As the team showed in his absence though, they are moving on without him.


Juan Mata Is No Understudy

Liverpool v Manchester United - Premier League : News Photo

As they were blinded by the gleam coming off shiny new arrivals Angel Di Maria and Radamel Falcao in the summer, Manchester United were seemingly blinded to the presence of a ready-made Premier League matchwinner.

Juan Mata isn’t just a player they can call upon when others are injured or out of form, he’s a top class performer and capable of moments of genius like his second goal.

If Louis van Gaal doesn’t use him, he could lose him.


United Are Hitting Their Stride Late On, Just Like Liverpool Did

The lack European competition was seen by many as a huge factor in Liverpool’s almost constant improvement throughout last season, and the same can be said for Manchester United now.

Following on from that great display against Tottenham last weekend, United were brilliant in the first half here. They dominated play and deserved to be more than one goal ahead at the break.

They might just get better in the next two months, too.


Teams Are Finding Out How To Stop Liverpool

Liverpool v Manchester United - Premier League : News Photo

Liverpool’s dreadful first half here followed on from the disappointing displays against Blackburn and Swansea City, and showcased that the previously heralded formation change from Brendan Rodgers might be falling a little flat.

Whereas previously the likes of Philippe Coutinho and Adam Lallana flourished in spaces the opposition were unprepared to fill, now that same opposition is drilled to fill them, and another change may be required from the Northern Irishman.


The Top Four Should Stay As It Is

Chelsea, Manchester City, Arsenal, Manchester United.

After much to-ing and fro-ing the four richest clubs in the country are now in the top four positions, and it would be a huge surprise is if it didn’t stay that way.


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