The four week period that will define Liverpool's season

Liverpool are set for an intense three months as the Premier League title race begins to seriously tighten up.

The Reds currently sit two points ahead of both Manchester City and Arsenal at the top of the table, a position that gives them little to no room for error.

And after suffering just their second league defeat of the season to the Gunners last weekend, it's imperative that Liverpool don't let one bad result snowball into a mid-season 'blip'.

As precarious as the Premier League state of play may look, Jurgen Klopp could still see out his Liverpool career with a quadruple, with the Reds yet to bow out of any of the four major competitions they're competing in.

However, with one final already in the docket and a handful of vital games scattered around, the Reds are staring down the barrel of a pivotal four-week period that could prove the difference between swansong success or a bitter end to Klopp's glory-laden reign.

February 25th to March 17th, mark it in your calendars.

Carabao Cup final, February 25

Carabao Cup Final Chelsea v Liverpool Jordan Henderson 14 of Liverpool and his team mates lift the Carabao Cup after winning on penalties London Wembley Stadium Greater London United Kingdom Copyright: xCraigxThomas/NewsxImagesx

Liverpool's first shot at glory comes at the tail end of the month, heading to Wembley to take on Chelsea in a repeat of the same final from two years prior.

Despite dismantling the Blues just last week in a Conor Bradley-powered 4-1 romping, this one just has cagey 0-0, winner decided on penalties written all over it.

The Reds will nevertheless go into this one as heavy favourites - not simply due to Chelsea's abysmal form this season but because of the shambles going on behind the scenes, with the club reportedly unable to sack Mauricio Pochettino due to the fact paying him out of his contract would lead to a breach in Premier League spending rules.

Anything other than victory at Wembley will go down as a major botch on Liverpool's part.

FA Cup fifth round, February 28

Emirates FA Cup Third Round Manchester City v Huddersfield Town The FA Cup trophy with City ribbons displayed ahead of the FA Cup Third Round match Manchester City vs Huddersfield Town at Etihad Stadium, Manchester, United Kingdom, 7th January 2024 Photo by Conor Molloy/News Images Manchester Etihad Stadium Manchester United, ManU Kingdom Copyright: xConorxMolloy/NewsxImagesx

From one domestic cup to another, and the Reds will seek to continue their FA Cup run as they host a familiar outfit in Southampton.

Now a Championship side after relegation from the Premier League last season, the Saints were a regular fixture in the top flight for over a decade, having numerous memorable encounters with Liverpool under Klopp.

After following up an impressive 2-0 win at Arsenal with a 5-2 thrashing of Norwich, only two games now stand between the Reds and an initial semi-final trip to Wembley, with the likes of Manchester UnitedManchester City and National League South outfit Maidstone United all still in the competition.

However, Russell Martin's side will be dreaming of some cup magic - something this year's tournament hasn't lacked - as they look to cause a mammoth upset on their travels.

Liverpool vs Manchester City, March 10

Premier League Manchester City v Liverpool Trent Alexander-Arnold 66 of Liverpool celebrates scoring to make it 1-1 during the Premier League match Manchester City vs Liverpool at Etihad Stadium, Manchester, United Kingdom, 25th November 2023 Photo by Conor Molloy/News Images Manchester Etihad Stadium Manchester United, ManU Kingdom Copyright: xConorxMolloy/NewsxImagesx

After stumbling at the last hurdle against a title rival, this could well be the make or break fixture of Liverpool's season.

In a surprise to absolutely no-one, Manchester City have grown into this season and now look imperious in the face of adversity, sweeping teams aside even when suffering an early setback - as they did against Brentford.

As such, it's vital that Liverpool take points from them when they have the opportunity - and that opportunity will come at Anfield on March 10.

Think of all the football cliches you like - must-win, six-pointer, this one's for all the marbles. They're all indicative of this clash.

Everton vs Liverpool, March 17

Football - FA Premier League - Liverpool FC v Everton FC LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Saturday, October 21, 2023: Liverpool s Dominik Szoboszlai during the FA Premier League match between Liverpool FC and Everton FC, the 243rd Merseyside Derby, at Anfield. Photo by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda LIVERPOOL Anfield MERSEYSIDE ENGLAND PUBLICATIONxNOTxINxUK Copyright: xDavidxRawcliffex P2023-10-21-Liverpool_Everton-16

From a potential title decider to derby day in seven nights, it's safe to say Liverpool will need to be at the races for the entirety of these four weeks.

Despite currently sitting in the relegation zone, Everton don't look as toothless as they once did under the likes of Frank Lampard and have done alright for themselves given their 10-point deduction.

That said, these are the games you can't slip up in if you want to be crowned a Premier League champion. Against a weaker opponent on their turf, the occasion and hostility of the crowd can't take charge.

However, whether this one goes ahead will all depend on Liverpool's progression in the FA Cup - if they beat Southampton, then their quarter-final will be scheduled for the weekend of March 16, resulting in the derby being moved.

Regardless of which fixture takes centre stage, Liverpool will have a significant outing to see out a potentially season-defining four weeks.

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