Jurgen Klopp quickly batted away the suggestion that Liverpool could win an historic Quadruple this season after getting his hands on the Carabao Cup on Sunday. “No team in the history of English football ever won the quadruple, right? Because it’s really difficult,” the German coach said despite his side’s strength on all fronts.
That such a question has even been posed of Klopp underlines the quality of the team he has built. Liverpool have scaled incredible heights with the former Borussia Dortmund boss at the helm, winning Champions League and Premier League titles, but the Reds are possibly better now than at any other point over the last seven years.
Superstars like Mohamed Salah, Virgil van Dijk and Sadio Mane have hit top form, but Liverpool are simultaneously building their next great team. This is embodied best by Colombian winger Luis Diaz who has hit the ground since arriving at Anfield from Porto in the January transfer window.
Diaz started Sunday’s Carabao Cup final win over Chelsea and delivered with an impressive display. On paper, the 25-year-old was deployed on the left wing, but frequently swapped position with Sadio Mane which made Liverpool even more fluid in the attacking third of the pitch. Chelsea struggled to keep them out.
The signing of Diaz has future-proofed Liverpool just as the addition of Diogo Jota did a year-and-a-half previously. That both players slotted so seamlessly into Klopp’s team says a lot about the high standard of Liverpool’s recruitment process and the holistic principles that guide the entire football department at Anfield.
“It’s really nice to have these kind of options,” Klopp explained when asked to elaborate on the quality of his attacking line this season. “We constantly prepare for today and for tomorrow as well. That is what our job has to be. The reaction of the players is always that they have to perform at the highest level.”
Ibrahima Konate needed more time to adjust to his new surroundings after arriving from RB Leipzig last summer, but the French defender now looks the part even if he cannot yet be certain of his place in Klopp’s strongest XI with Joel Matip in such sparkling form this season. Nonetheless, Konate is improving with almost every match he plays for his new club.
It’s not just in the transfer market where Liverpool are making plans for the future. Klopp has fast-tracked Curtis Jones into his first team this season with the 21-year-old a good option in the centre of midfield. Harvey Elliott, signed from Fulham as a 16-year-old in 2019, is also flourishing despite an injury setback earlier this season.
“He is still a fearless boy and a great footballer,” Klopp recently said about Elliott. “Probably his biggest talent is how ready he is mentally for all the things out there.” Indeed, Elliott has handled the pressure of being an important figure for Liverpool, taking Sunday’s Carabao Cup final in his stride. He should be a pillar of the Liverpool team for years to come.
Of course, Trent Alexander-Arnold is another Liverpool player still at an early stage of his career while Joe Gomez is still only 24 years old. Klopp’s team might be at the peak of their powers with a Quadruple still on the cards this season, but the underlying core of youth could keep them competitive for much longer.
Roberto Firmino and van Dijk are both 30 with Salah’s contract situation still to be resolved. Speculation has even swirled around Mane’s future at Liverpool with captain Jordan Henderson entering his twilight years as a professional. For most clubs, all this would be a concern, and Liverpool will still have to transition into a new era, but the pieces are already in place for them to do so.