Europa win step in the right direction
Although it might not have been the best performance produced under Kenny Dalglish, Liverpool took another positive step in their campaign with victory against Sparta Prague last night.
The 1-0 victory over the Czech side ensured the reds progressed to the last 16 of the Europa League, with a tie against Braga awaiting in March. While it wasn't the most memorable of performances by Anfield's European night standards, the manner in which it was achieved will not concern anyone at the club this morning.
One of the main positives from last night was the performance of Dirk Kuyt, whose workrate ensured the Sparta defence spearheaded by Thomas Repka had their hands full all night. In addition to this, the fact that Liverpool still have the chance of adding some much needed silverware to the Anfield cabinet is an added bonus.
While some fans may see the much maligned competition as an unwanted distraction, the fact that it's a trophy, plus a European competition is not to be scoffed at lightly. The Europa League may not sound as attractive as the Champions League, but were Liverpool fans saying that in 2001 when they defeated the likes of Roma, Porto and Barcelona to reach the final where they took part in one of the memorable matches before a certain date in Istanbul?