Liverpool are on course to wrap up the Premier League at the home of rivals Everton in March.
If the top flight’s leading teams keep up their current point averages, the Reds would clinch the trophy after their game at Goodison Park on March 14.
With eight games remaining, that would be comfortably a record for the earliest title coronation in the Premier League era as well as a chance to lord it over their neighbours.
Get the party started
Liverpool’s near-perfect record had their fans singing “we’re going to win the league” as they beat Manchester United on Sunday, though Klopp insisted he and his players “will not be part of that party yet”.
They lead by 16 points with a game in hand and average 2.9 per game compared to second-placed Manchester City’s 2.1 – those rates have them on course to lead by 24.7 points, rounding to 25, with eight games remaining and therefore 24 to play for.
That would obliterate the record set by Manchester United in 2001 and matched by City two years ago – both of those squads won the league with five games to go.
Liverpool’s current lead is a record at this stage of the season – they have played 22 games, compared to 23 for all of their rivals – with City’s 100-point 2017-18 campaign providing the only real precedent.
Pep Guardiola’s men were 15 points clear after 22 games and though that was briefly cut to 12, they pulled away again to an eventual record winning margin of 19.
United led by 11 from surprise challengers Sunderland at this stage of their 2000-01 title win. The Black Cats faded to finish seventh, leaving Arsenal and Liverpool in pursuit as United’s lead peaked at 16 points with five games left – they finished 10 clear.
The Red Devils had won by 18 the previous season – also a record until beaten by City’s centurions – but their lead did not hit double figures until their 31st game and was constant at 13 for much of the run-in before a final flourish.
Arsenal’s “Invincibles” of 2003-04 only re-took top spot in the table by winning game 22 of their season, though they won the title with four games to spare and by an eventual 11-point margin.
United left in the shade
Victory on Sunday also stretched Liverpool’s lead over opponents United to 30 points – just one fewer than the final margin between the two sides last season.
Liverpool’s breathtaking pursuit of champions City last term brought them 97 points, a record for a Premier League team not winning the title and 31 clear of United’s sixth-placed tally of 66. Even then, the gap was ‘only’ 16 at this stage of the season.
For much of the Premier League era, Sir Alex Ferguson’s United teams dominated Liverpool – and most of the other competition – and it is only in recent years that the balance has shifted.
Liverpool finished 20 ahead of United in 2013-14, when Brendan Rodgers’ side were runners-up to City, but took until the 26-game mark for the margin to reach double figures.
Get the best features, fun and footballing frolics straight to your inbox every week.
Thank you for signing up to Four Four Two. You will receive a verification email shortly.
There was a problem. Please refresh the page and try again.