It began with one surge over 70 thrilling yards. It lasted for 13 seconds and drove five Manchester City players to distraction, but by the end Anfield was roaring in approval.
Andrew Robertson, flying down the left, was the man who got the crowd on their feet. His Liverpool career was still in its infancy but once he had chased David Silva then hounded Kyle Walker, John Stones, Ederson and, finally, Nicolas Otamendi, it was clear he was going to be in the team to stay.
The Scot had been waiting patiently for an opportunity but in January 2018, as Liverpool brought City’s unbeaten start to the campaign crashing down, there would be no looking back. Left back had always been a difficult position for this club, but Robertson provided the solution to the puzzle.
In Trent Alexander-Arnold and Andy Robertson, Liverpool have elite level full-back options
‘I got the momentum up and I just kept going and going,’ Robertson, a proficient long-distance runner in his youth, once told Sportsmail with a wry smile. ‘It’s drilled into us in training — you never stop. It’s just a hunger to get the ball back because the game is a lot easier when you have the ball.’
Trent Alexander-Arnold was absent that day, but his breakthrough had come 12 months earlier at Old Trafford. Jurgen Klopp sprung a surprise by naming him against Manchester United, but the teenager was impressive.
Steven Gerrard, who had worked with Alexander-Arnold at Liverpool’s academy, was adamant the kid who had grown up a mile away from the club’s Melwood HQ, would become ‘a Beauty’ and Klopp was made aware of his promise within days of taking over in 2015.
Jurgen Klopp handed Robertson a chance following a slow start, and the Scotsman seized it
When Klopp eventually gave the two men a run in the team it became clear that Liverpool had struck upon something special. It is common when discussing Liverpool to lavish praise on the headline grabbers at the top of the field — Mohamed Salah, Roberto Firmino and Sadio Mane — or on Ballon d’Or favourite Virgil van Dijk, whose impact on the club in 20 months has been dramatic.
What has helped Liverpool close the gap on City, however, has been the impact of their wingmen. Alexander-Arnold and Robertson — close friends who watch matches from each other’s private