"Sensational set of players led by an unbelievable manager" - Michael Owen believes Carabao Cup glory can catapult Liverpool to historic quadruple 

Liverpool's Carabao Cup triumph could be the first of many trophies this season
Liverpool's Carabao Cup triumph could be the first of many trophies this season
Paul Gorst

Conventional wisdom suggests winning the League Cup provides the springboard to greater success later in the season. Manchester City, with four successive Carabao Cup triumphs between 2018 and 2021, would certainly attest to that.

With two Premier League titles in the last three seasons, having won a domestic treble in 2019, Pep Guardiola knows all about how the League Cup can catapult teams to bigger and better things in the final few weeks.

For Liverpool, they will be hoping that the theory holds weight, having beaten Chelsea on penalties in a thrilling penalty shootout at Wembley last month.

After edging out Thomas Tuchel's side 11-10 on spot-kicks in the capital, the celebrations - both in London and Liverpool - continued long into the night on Sunday February 27 as the Reds toasted to their first domestic cup for a decade.

And crucially, Liverpool's record-setting ninth League Cup could yet be remembered as part of the wider context of a far more grandiose achievement at Anfield as Jurgen Klopp's side remain in the hunt for a truly unprecedented quadruple.

Michael Owen was part of the Liverpool squad that won the League Cup in 2001 before they went and added the FA Cup and UEFA Cup to their haul. They then qualified for the UEFA Champions League for good measure in what was one of the greatest seasons of the 21st century at Anfield.

And the former Reds striker reckons lifting the first piece of silverware of the campaign does indeed act as a stepping stone to more celebrated triumphs.

"I think it is the most underrated thing to do - push to win the League Cup," Owen told Sportskeeda.

"You see teams almost playing totally weakened teams and I get why teams do it, because not only have you got rest good players, you need to give squad players a go, so I get all that.
"But you can always just tilt the balance in favor to go strong enough to get through because in my experience, once you get to the final, it is the most unbelievable day.
"Everyone rubbishes it during the season and then you get to a final and it is like 'oh my God! This is unbelievable! what a day, what drama, what excitement.'
"I've finished my career now and I look back on days like that and think that they were the highlights. It wasn't finishing fourth and qualifying for the Champions League and all the rest of it.
"It's about winning, getting those special days and I do think you get a flavour and a taste for them. There's a togetherness now in the squad, they have been to a final and come out on top, that momentum starts rolling.
"Especially as it comes early in the season that final, I think it is just brilliant to win it and as I say, if I was in management, I would be taking it a lot more seriously than others do and it is brilliant to see Liverpool have taken it seriously."

Liverpool could make history at the business end of the season

Arsenal v Liverpool - Premier League
Arsenal v Liverpool - Premier League

The quarter-finals of the Champions League await Klopp's side next month where they will confront Benfica, while they will contest a first FA Cup semi-final for seven years in April against Manchester City too, having seen off Nottingham Forest on Sunday at the City Ground.

The international break means that Liverpool will return to action at the beginning of April still in the hunt for a four-trophy haul that has never been done before in English football.

There is, of course, a naturally good reason for that feat having never been accomplished given just how frightfully tough it is, but Klopp's side, for now, can still allow themselves to dream.

Their fans certainly can, at least.

Owen adds: "So it is what you call 'poised'. It is absolutely perfectly poised with a full and fit squad, healthy, confident and they have a sensational set of players led by an unbelievable manager.

"I don't think it's just this season because for the last few seasons. With football you're either right at the top or you're struggling to get there basically, aren't you?
"You see at the moment, it's just a case of how many trophies you can win while you're at the top and I think Liverpool have been at the top for a good few years now.
"I don't necessarily believe Liverpool are playing any better two years ago as they did a year ago and so on, they are just absolutely top of their game and have been for a long time.
"This season is no different, one prize has already been dished out and that is brilliant to get that Carabao Cup in the back pocket to start with and the big prizes are about to get dished out.
"This is the most important time of the year where, amazingly, you're into March and you've hardly got an injury in your team, which is just a far cry from last season when a lot of big players were out."

Edited by Paul Gorst


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