Twitter was overflowing with complaints about the quality of play in the first half of Chelsea vs. Liverpool. After some lackluster results the last few weeks, Chelsea could’ve tightened up in the second and given Liverpool a chance to take control of the game. Instead, Lampard and company kept their heads, defanged Liverpool with quality tackling, and kept pressing until Anelka put them ahead to stay. A team this talented can only be beaten by their own mental mistakes, but Chelsea showed championship nerves today in their 2-0 win over the Reds.
Liverpool, meanwhile, answered some questions while raising new ones. The defense was much tighter — even though Chelsea got in some shots off set pieces, Carragher and Skrtel were making a lot of plays to clear the ball and close off Chelsea attacks. But the offense completely disappeared under a pile of poor passes, tentative plays in the box, and an inability to force Hilario into a single tough save on the day.
The loss will be hung on Liverpool’s neck as the weight that sinks their title hopes, but the season is far from over. They remain 6 back of a team that has yet to face Man U, Arsenal, or Man City. While that negativity may be premature, calling Chelsea the class of the league is not.