Match Report: Liverpool 1-1 Leicester City
So, how do you put a positive spin on a home draw that felt like a defeat, and the first points dropped against a side outside the top-6 for the first time this season?
Well, in hindsight, you simply have to look at the last round of fixtures and say that it's a point gained for the Reds. Prior to Wednesday night we were 4 points clear. Had City won (which was the expected result, really) we'd be sitting 2 points clear.
As it is, we're not 5 points clear. City need us to draw at least 5 games or lose 2 of our remaining fixtures and have a perfect remaining 14 matches themselves. Considering that they have Arsenal, Chelsea, Manchester United and Tottenham still to play, that's highly unlikely to happen.
As for last night, it was a disappointing match all round for the men in Red. We just never moved up through the gears after the first goal. You could almost argue that it came too soon, much like seemed to be the case for City the night before.
For 10-15 minutes following the goal, the home side were fairly dominant, passing the ball around at will and looking totally un-flustered.
All it took was for the away side to cut a swathe down the right once and the defence's nerves just couldn't recover.
Of particular concern was how disjointed and all at sea the defence looked. Virgil Van Dijk in particular looking as uncomfortable as ever in a Red shirt; the first time we've seen him look anything but colossal since he signed.
Similarly, Alisson looked a little slow and lazy in the cold and snow and put Jordan Henderson in some trouble early on. This became a theme of the first half, with the goalie playing a few balls out that put his team-mates in trouble.
At the other end, other than a good chance for Firmino after a ball through from Salah, the Reds - for all their dominance - threatened very little in reality.
Leicester on the other hand grew into the game, hounding Henderson and Robertson and causing all kinds of problems down the flanks with the pace of Gray and Vardy.
And it was via Robertson that Leicester were given - and took - their best chance of the match as the usually reliable left-back gave away a needless free-kick deep in the first half stoppage time. You know the rest.
The big talking point though, was whether or not Harry Maguire should've been on the pitch to score that equaliser. The answer from us, is no. As last man, Maquire took down Sadio Mane who would've been clear through. Let's be honest, Jonny Evans is never catching him. But Martin Atkinson, true to usual form, waved play on and started a theme of terrible decisions being waved away for the home side.
Any Liverpool fans hoping for a home side to come roaring out of the traps in the second half were sorely disappointed, as it was once again the away side that looked the most threatening. Despite all of Liverpool's dominance of possession.
The biggest threat throughout for the home side was Sadio Mane but he was often working with little assistance from his team mates, for all of his work.
On the other hand, Leicester appeared to be boosted after seeing their game-plan work so well and once again created the best chances, with Alisson having to save his team on a couple of occasions.
First, he had to - somehow - palm away an inadvertent redirected ball from a Leicester free-kick which Bobby had got in the way of. Before later proving his worth again after a quick counter-attack from Leicester saw Demarai Gray run clear.
The 2nd big talking point of the match came mid-way through the first half as Naby Keita was fouled in the area but Atkinson again waved play on. BT Sport initially agreed, but after a number of replays became convinced that, particularly given the position of the referee, there was no other option but a penalty as Leicester defender Pereira stood on Keita's foot.
A change was needed, and Klopp duly obliged, replacing Keita and Shaqiri with Fabinho and Lallana. It was our classy Brazilian who changed the pattern of the game, and Liverpool started really turning the screw in the last 10-15 minutes.
It was all too little, too late for the home side though and the match ended a disappointing 1-1.
Man of the Match: Sadio Mane - Scored the opener and, in reality, looked the only LFC player likely to affect the scoreline.