It felt like an age (I even had time to reply a few chats) before David Luiz’s header hit the back of the City net. 2-0 and Man City were no longer invincible. Their tally stands at 15 league games unbeaten, this season. Not only did they lose that run, they also lost their spot at the top of the table to Liverpool…who is the now the only unbeaten team left.
To those who found that loss shocking: Come on…City were bound to lose at some point. What better team (after Liverpool) to lose to than Chelsea? Perhaps it wasn’t their day or Chelsea had everything going for them on the night…it doesn’t really matter. What is clear from that result, is that unbeaten runs are not easy.
Since 2003, only 3 teams in Europe’s big leagues have achieved an unbeaten season: Arsenal (03/04), Juventus (11/12) and Celtic (16/17). In that time, so many teams have attempted and failed to have the same result. Man United, over the years, have always gone on unbeaten runs that stretched to over 20 games within the season. Most times, they go on to win the league title so the run has a meaning, even though I’m sure they would have wanted a perfect season too.
But every huge club wants an unbeaten season. Vilas-Boas earned his status as a great football coach when he took FC Porto through an unbeaten season in 10/11. Conte will always be a Juventus legend because of 11/12 and Brendan Rodgers has resurrected his reputation by delivering Celtic’s invincible 16/17 season.
The biggest reference, in the modern era, will always be Arsene Wenger and the Arsenal team of 03/04. In a league as tough as the English Premier League, to go through an entire season is phenomenal. Wenger’s legacy will always be tied to that achievement, and to think he added about a dozen more games to the run (stretching into the next season) only adds more prestige to the achievement.
Great managers will always look for these runs. Not only do they ensure title-winning campaigns, unbeaten runs also place great managers in the history books. The teams become famous for it and the fans have something to brag about.
As earlier stated, Liverpool are the last unbeaten team left in England so the focus is on them. Every opponent they face from now on will be hell-bent on making the same headlines Chelsea made last weekend. It will be fun to watch.
Liverpool fans must hope that this run goes on. If the run has to end, they better hope the team loses to a big team like Chelsea. Imagine going through such a run, and then lose to…Cardiff. No disrespect…but I know right?