It sure felt like the start of something special, the hiding we have all been waiting for Liverpool to produce. However, Liverpool went out like a lamb, but still secured the three points relatively comfortably. It started with some superb play from Moses and Enrique to set up Suarez for the first. While he slipped in trying to make space, that didn't stop him as he fooled everyone by sweeping the ball home while laying on the carpet.
Shortly after Sturridge produced a bit of inspired play as he ran at his defender, created a bit of space and smashed it hom off the far post. From there, the rout was on...or so we thought. Sterling, who had been absent until this point, was tugged at by a Palace defender right at the edge of the box. Even after seeing it a dozen times, it is still quite debatable whether he was in or out of the box. Either way, Stevie slotted it home and Liverpool went into the half a comfortable 3-0.
The second half proved a bit nervy though. Liverpool clearly decided to defend what they had and Palace, to their credit, decided to go for it. They put Liverpool on the backfoot a number of times while Liverpool relied pretty much on the counter for much of the half. Sterling's foul near the touchline set up the Palace freekick that resulted in the goal. Yet again, Liverpool's set piece defending was extraordinarily questionable. It is something that must get better as Gayle was allowed to roam free and he got the slightest of touches to flick it in off the far post that had earlier been so kind to Sturridge.
In the end, the three points were never really in doubt, but it was a bit frustrating to see Liverpool finish yet another match at a half jog. While it was clear the Palace goal gave them the kick in the ass they needed, in a closer game it might have been too little too late. The international break is upon us now and based on reports most of the injured should be healed by the time the break is done. However, if history is anything to judge by, Sturridge will pick up a knock and Stevie will rip his groin out on the break. For now though, I should stop being so pessimistic and start rooting for Sunderland.
-Henderson was magnificent in Lucas' role. His youthful energy makes me so jealous.
-Stevie notched his 99th Premier League goal.
-The 3-5-2 has worked quite well and will suit Liverpool well against the sides that aren't a threat down the wings. That said, once we have a healthy proper backline, the 4-3-3 has to be the preferred option.
-Sturridge and Suarez, Suarez and Sturridge. Need I say more? There hasn't been a hotter duo since the Britney Spears Madonna kiss. Ok, so maybe that was more creepy that hot, but you get what I'm going for.
-Sterling stank it up. He looks void of the youthful ignorant confidence he displayed last year.
-Will we ever see Ibe again?
-Liverpool's next five matches are @Newcastle, WBA, @Arsenal, Fulham and @Everton. Picking up 12 points from those shouldn't be a huge ask and will set them up well going into December. Even if they can only manage 10, it will still set them up nicely as other teams seem to be dropping points left and right.