It's been somewhat of a rollercoaster season for Liverpool fans with Jürgen Klopp guiding them back into Europe. Anfield will once again play host to European football.
He had the Reds playing some of the best football in well over a decade. The 49-year-old reinvented a number of players and gave them a new lease of life. However, his biggest achievement was turning doubters into believers. The cynics may have returned over recent months but for a period he had them dreaming of a first title win in over 25 years.
His third season at the helm will throw up different scenarios. If he's to be a success he's going to have to overcome the following five challenges.
Selling the Liverpool project to potential signings
Liverpool as a club have a rich history but the past isn't what attracts players these days. Aside from a League Cup win in 2012 they haven't won anything since the 2006 FA Cup.
They may have been runners-up in European finals, the Premier League, FA Cup finals and EFL Cup finals, but they've added just one piece of silverware to the trophy cabinet in a past decade.
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World class players come and go because Anfield isn't a long-term home to the world's best anymore. Lack of success coupled with no star power means despite having Klopp as manager, a talented squad and European football on offer, it's likely clubs in a more stable position will be vying for the same players.
Convincing them that Merseyside is the best place for them to develop won't be easy.
Develop a Plan B
At the start of the season Liverpool played some scintillating football. They went from 0-100mph in a matter of seconds and the opposition couldn't cope with the electric pace of Sadio Mané, the creativity of Philippe Coutinho and the movement of Roberto Firmino.
It was the perfect storm and for it to work effectively the conditions had to be perfect. Any slight change and the team went from destructive to dormant.
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Mané went to the AFCON with Senegal and Liverpool lost their edge. Klopp persisted with the same system despite not having players. Coutinho fell victim to an injury and Firmino was shifted to the left. The dynamic of the attack shifted but the system stayed the same. Mané was cropped against Everton and Firmino was this time shunted to the right.
It was a poor impersonation of the frontline which had terrorised teams earlier on in the season. It wasn't until the match against West Ham United, when injuries forced the German manager's hand, that Liverpool switched it up. The 4-3-3 system was shelved and the 4-4-2 diamond was used. The change worked wonders and the Reds romped home to a 4-0 victory.
Klopp needs to have two/three systems he's confident in so that the team are able to switch it up if necessary.
Being able to juggle European football and the Domestic cups
Liverpool have been able to concentrate on the Premier League this season without the distraction of European football. The Reds were also helped by having no cup involvement after January.
They reached the semi-finals of the EFL Cup before losing to Southampton and Wolverhampton Wanderers ended their FA Cup hopes in the fourth round. A top four finish would paper over those disappointments but next season fans won't be so forgiving.
Regardless of the result on Sunday, Liverpool will be in Europe next season. While the Europa League isn't the kindest of competitions, a club with such prestigious history should be doing their upmost to win any European competition they're in.
With reports suggesting Fenway Sports Group are prepared to sanction £200million worth of signings this summer, the team should be in a good way to do well in Europe, challenge for a place in the top four and make waves in the domestic competitions.
Ensuring his players deliver on a consistent basis
Taking points off your rivals is, on paper at least, the hardest part of the season. Liverpool perfected that skill. The Reds are undefeated this season against Chelsea, Manchester United, Manchester City, Spurs, Arsenal and Everton. It's that sort of form which you can build title challenges on.
Yet Liverpool find themselves 17 points behind league leaders Chelsea. Why? Because they haven't been able to do the job against so called ‘inferior' opposition. Sunderland, Swansea City, West Ham, Hull City, Bournemouth and Crystal Palace have all taken points off Klopp's team this season. It's the main reason they're going into the final game of the season needing to better the Arsenal's result against Everton to finish in the top four.
Inconsistency plagued Liverpool last season under the former Borussia Dortmund manager and it has to be third time lucky for them next year. He has to find a way to ensure his players treat the matches against the relegation strugglers as they do the matches against rivals.
Trust his players
At times this season Klopp has been reluctant to trust the players at his disposal. This may be because they aren't his players as such but he has had three transfer windows to bring in reinforcements. The players at the club shouldn't be there to just make up the numbers, they must have been kept for some reason.
Yet despite this, he's been against using certain players even when it appears he has no other choice. For example, how is it that Daniel Sturridge isn't fit enough to play 45 minutes one week but the next he's playing 80-odd against West Ham. In the past there's been times Liverpool desperately need a goal and he brings on the former Chelsea striker for two minutes.
If at first you don't succeed, try, try, again! Alberto Moreno's determination to become the bottle-flip king 👑 pic.twitter.com/3F91jBIboK
— Soccer AM (@SoccerAM) May 13, 2017
Over recent weeks the Reds have screaming out for pace in the absence of Mané and Alberto Moreno is sat on the bench playing with a plastic bottle.
The recruitment team weren't able to bring in the players Klopp wanted in January but his lack of trust towards the players already at the club means he backed himself into a corner. It can't be the case next season.