Give Luis Suarez a fixture at Carrow Road every weekend, and he’ll break a few scoring records when it’s all said and done. For the second consecutive time, Suarez tormented Norwich with a sublime hat trick and simply put a perfect match, leading Liverpool to a 5-2 victory, their first of the season.
In a battle between two win-less teams, it was over after two minutes. Suarez opened his tally, looked concentrated for a full 90 minutes, despite not getting a penalty call (or maybe even two) his way, simply doing everything and everywhere for a Liverpool side that has become completely dependent on his scoring and play, just like they were on Fernando Torres and Steven Gerrard a few years ago.
Is this what Brendan Rodgers wants? Probably not. Something a bit more evened out, with Fabio Borini and Raheem Sterling also putting their names on the scoresheet would be nice from time to time, but for now, it’s Suarez that takes all of the scoring load. He doesn’t seem to mind, bagging five this season so far.
Easy match? Liverpool made it easy, but it was also one of those days, which hasn’t happened to this side too often over the last couple of years, where everything works and clicks. Using Suso and Andre Wisdom worked out perfectly for Rodgers, who suddenly realizes that he has a deeper squad than he initially thought, usable also in Premier League matches and not only when the Europa League or the League Cup come along.
Joe Allen had enough help this time in the defensive midfield to stop Norwich when it mattered, who wouldn’t have scored a second goal if it wasn’t for the usual Martin Skrtel mistake, which has to be alarming for Rodgers who simply is too thin at centre back if anything happens to Daniel Agger. A duo of Carragher and Skrtel hasn’t worked since it was 2009.
But the important thing for Liverpool was finding balance in the midfield by playing four. With no natural defensive midfielder, putting Suso inside to help Joe Allen hold the fort when Norwich came attacking allowed Steven Gerrard, finally, the freedom to play much closer to Suarez and Sterling. Gerrard was at his best when the Liverpool midfield didn’t need him to contribute too much, and he played almost as a second striker behind Fernando Torres for a couple of seasons. Rodgers may have finally found the formula that will allow him that, as Suarez holds the centre of attack and Raheem Sterling continues to improve as a winger-forward, still looking for his first goal.
Nuri Sahin scored once again, mostly thanks to Suarez who did most of the build up. Like Suso, having Sahin in the lineup takes the load off Joe Allen, and after his unsuccessful first dive into the deep water against Arsenal, Sahin looks a bit more comfortable with his new team and the new game.
Suarez is crossed by the referees in England. Maybe Rodgers can complain a bit more and it’ll eventually get him something, but there’s a good chance it will all be in vain. Suarez had one clear penalty on him and another 50-50. He didn’t dive once and tried to keep his arguing to a minimum, as he should. When he’s focused, he’s right up there with the best scorers in the Premier League, maybe in Europe. He won’t score his first goal in 67 seconds every day, but if he remains honed in on scoring goals and assists instead of trying to improve his rep with the match officials, Liverpool won’t have to wait so long for their second win.