It was a Sunday evening to remember for the Reds. A victory under the floodlights of Anfield against their fiercest title rivals Manchester City, and of course, an eight-point lead at the top of the table...has that been mentioned yet?
The weekend's clash was played at a frantic pace, the true definition of a heavyweight clash between two sides who love to have the ball at their feet. It was an encounter of the highest quality involving some of the best players in the world, but there was one player stood out above the rest - Fabinho.
It took Fabinho a long time to adjust to life in England. The Brazilian made his £40m move from Monaco back in July 2018, and while Liverpool knew they were acquiring an incredible talent, Jurgen Klopp felt the need to slowly bed the midfielder into the side. His debut came in a 2-1 home defeat in the Carabao Cup to Chelsea in September of that year, and Liverpool's new signing looked, in truth, fairly out of place.
Fast forward to Sunday, and it is now clear for all to see just how crucial Fabinho has become to the way Liverpool operate.
He is the defensive-midfielder Liverpool have been crying out for.
The 26-year-old was named man of the match for the incredible shift he put in against City, and it was his stunning strike within six minutes which helped Liverpool assert their dominance.
His celebration - in which he pointed to his wrist - suggested that it was about time the midfielder got his name on the scoresheet. In fact, his worldie against Man City was only his second goal for the Reds since joining the club over a year ago.
But that really isn't his job.
After Liverpool's 2-1 victory over Tottenham on 27 October, Klopp nicknamed the Brazilian the 'Dyson' - highlighting how he hoovers everything up for Liverpool, keeping their midfield nice and tidy. And this is where he thrives, breaking up play and nullifying the central attacking threats of all teams he faces. Fabinho has become a line of defence for Liverpool all by himself and is now the glue that holds this unbelievable side together.
Klopp has shown his faith in Fabinho this season, with the midfielder starting 11 of Liverpool's 12 Premier League outings - missing only the Reds' trip to Aston Villa in fear of potential suspension for the Man City match. Notably in that fixture at Villa Park, Liverpool looked sluggish, failing to control the centre of the park and offering the Aston Villa attackers far too much time and space in which to counter. If it hadn't been for Sadio Mane's 94th minute winner, his absence would have proved very costly indeed.
Anfield still awaits a Premier League trophy, and bar injuries, it looks as if it may only have to wait until May 2020. However, while it easy to point out just how much Liverpool would struggle if Mohamed Salah or Virgil van Dijk were sidelined, Fabinho appears to be just as important to the Reds' success.
The 'Dyson' makes Liverpool tick. His defensive work is unparalleled, and he is slowly but surely becoming one of the best defensive-midfielders the world has to offer. Not only this, but the Brazilian starts the majority of the Reds' offensive fronts, picking the ball up from deep and floating his trademark lofted pass to either of the full-backs.
Fabinho is staking his claim as the Reds' most important asset and is just as pivotal to Jurgen Klopp's system as their attacking trident or marauding full-backs. Heaven forbid anything happens to Liverpool's number three.
Source : 90min