Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool may be racking up victories like they’re going out of fashion this season, but in terms of the greatest records of football history, there is still quite some way to go.
The odds have been torn apart by the Reds this season, who so far have gone one better than simply challenging rivals Manchester City but instead dominated the entire division.
With victory over Wolverhampton Wanderers on Thursday evening, courtesy of a last-gasp Roberto Firmino strike, Liverpool pulled level with the impressive 40-game unbeaten stretch of Jose Mourinho’s Chelsea during the 2004/05 campaign.
With victory at Wolves, Liverpool remain on course to smash the record of unbeaten runs
Jurgen Klopp’s side have become a whole new monster this season, finding any way to win
While the red half of Merseyside care only for wrapping up their first league title since the 1989–90 season, eyes of the football world are darting back and forth between the record books to discover just how immortal Klopp’s side can become.
The most touted record, of course, comes in the form of Arsenal’s ‘Invincibles’ mantle from 2004, during which Arsene Wenger’s side concluded a campaign without defeat and amassed a 49-game stretch along the way.
Liverpool, at present, are nine games short of equalling the unbeaten run, with 15 league matches remaining to play in total.
The Reds have matched the 40 game undefeated streak of Jose Mourinho’s early Chelsea reign
LONGEST UNBEATEN RUNS IN EUROPEAN FOOTBALL HISTORY
1) AC Milan (1991/93) – 58 games
2) Bayern Munich (2012/14) – 53 games
3) Arsenal (2003/04) – 49 games
4) Juventus (2011/12) – 49 games
5) Barcelona (2017/18) – 43 games
6) Nottingham Forest (1977/78) – 42 games
7) Chelsea (2004/05) – 40 games
8) Fiorentina (1955/56) – 40 games
9) Liverpool (2019/20) – 40 games
19) Real Sociedad (1979/80) – 38 games
While Arsenal may well be looking over their shoulder as the threat to their precious record continues, so too are the likes of Barcelona, Juventus and Bayern Munich.
As expected, European heavyweights dominate the list of serial winners, with seriously impressive records littered throughout the various football eras.
Ernesto Valverde’s Barca side of Lionel Messi and Co surged to win after win, stamping tiki-taka firmly onto European football and elevating the game to a whole new level.
That side, however, peaked at 43 games unbeaten. It stands as a very obtainable target for Klopp’s Liverpool, with their next three fixtures against West Ham, Southampton and Norwich respectively.
While his ego may already be bruised by Klopp this season, Pep Guardiola faces a double humiliation with Liverpool on course to surpass the 53 game undefeated streak of his scintillating Bayern Munich team of 2014.
After inheriting the team from Jupp Heynckes, Guardiola turned the Bavarians into one of the most ruthless sides on the continent and, in doing so, played a role in catapulting German football to the height of European attention.
Arsenal’s ‘Invincibles’ went a season unbeaten, but their run was ended after 49 games
LIVERPOOL’S NEXT TEN LEAGUE GAMES
West Ham (A) – Feb 29
Southampton (H) – Feb 1
Norwich (A) – Feb 15
West Ham (H) – Feb 24
Watford (H) – Feb 29
Bournemouth (H) – March 7
Everton (A) – March 14
Crystal Palace (H) – March 21
Manchester City (A) – April 4
Aston Villa (H) – April 11
Guardiola quickly moulded his side to his demands, reinventing positions for the likes of club icon Philip Lahm along the way. The side would go 53 matches without losing once, winning every major honour available in Germany. The Champions League, however, would evade the Spanish tactician in Bayern colours.
And so to the undisputed titans themselves. Italian royalty AC Milan stand head and shoulders above the rest when it comes to domestic dominance. The early 90s saw the famous black and red stripes become feared across the continent, as Fabio Capello took charge and the team simply forgot how to lose.
With Franco Baresi and Paolo Maldini keeping the defence water-tight and Marco van Basten scoring goals for fun upfront, Milan produced a spell-binding run which lasted a whole 58 matches before it was penetrated.
During the irrepressible reign, lasting from 1991 to 1993, Milan won three league titles, two Supercoppa Italiana gongs and took the crowning glory of becoming Champions League winners at the end of the 93-94 season with a brutal 4-0 win over Barcelona.
When it comes to the greatest, AC Milan of the early 90s dominated football like never before
Fabio Capello’s men went 58 games without losing and amassed a historic amount of trophies
To rival Milan’s heroics, Liverpool sure have their work cut out. Klopp’s men must keep their noses clean until September in order to stand atop the pantheon of football’s finest. It would mean getting through the entire campaign unscathed, before immediately picking up from where they left off. It is, indeed, quite some ask.
Liverpool’s toughest tests arguably fall in March and April, with the Reds set to head to Goodison Park to face bitter rivals Everton upon their own patch.
After two humiliations at Anfield this season already, the Toffees will be desperate to make amends. While seeing their neighbours blister towards a top flight title may be difficult enough for the men in blue, breaking such an impressive record would provide something to savour.
Klopp pits his wits against Guardiola once more on April 4, as Liverpool travel to Manchester City for what is the one remaining headline game of the season.
As things currently stand, should Liverpool and City continue to win each of their fixtures, the title would be decided in Manchester on this day, should the home side fail to win.
Captain Jordan Henderson continues to echo his manager’s sentiments that it is one game at a time for Liverpool. But, with a 16 point margin at the top with a game-in-hand, the kind of form being produced has the record books being prepped for a fresh chapter.