Eighth league title secured

Eighth league title secured28 April 1973

Liverpool went into the 1972-73 season determined to bring what was now a seven year itch for the title to an end.

Bill Shankly's men had not won a trophy since the 1966 Charity Shield success against Everton and following a frustrating period of transition they were now on the verge of greatness.

Gone were the stalwarts of the Scot's first red revolution with the likes of Ron Yeats and Ian St John replaced by a new, younger generation that included Anfield legends in the making, such as Emlyn Hughes and Kevin Keegan.

The signs of progress were already clear to see and the campaign got off to an impressive start with successive 2-0 victories over both Manchester clubs at Anfield.

There was certainly renewed belief in the camp and despite surprise defeats at both Derby County and Leicester City it wasn't long before they were recognised as genuine contenders.

A resounding 5-0 home win over Sheffield United in late September finally saw them top the table and was further evidence of their title credentials.

The challenge was now well and truly on and Shankly's red machine remained at the summit for large periods of the season until rivals Arsenal secured what many felt would be a crucial blow to our hopes in February.

The Gunners produced an impressive all-round display to claim a 2-0 victory at Anfield and leapfrog Liverpool into top spot.

It was the Reds' first home loss in 32 matches and came hot on the heels of an FA Cup fourth round replay defeat at Manchester City just three days earlier.

Many sides may have struggled to recover from such a quick-fire setback - but not Shankly's Liverpool.

Inspired by the colossal performances of Hughes the Reds bounced back and it was the man the fans nicknamed 'Crazy Horse' who fired them to a victory that would prove to be a telling moment in the title race.

With just 10 minutes remaining of a Merseyside derby at Goodison Park, Shankly's men looked all set to drop three points behind the Gunners as they struggled to break the stalemate against their neighbours.

The Reds needed a hero and up stepped Emlyn, who notched two late goals to clinch a dramatic 2-0 victory and reignite our title challenge.

It was a result that gave the Reds the confidence boost needed to continue their bid for both a league and UEFA Cup double, and with Kevin Keegan and John Toshack terrorising defences home and abroad, it wasn't long before we were celebrating title number eight.

A run of five wins from their next eight matches put them in the driving seat and set-up an exciting climax to the season.

The Reds had been locked in a three way fight for the League Championship with both Arsenal and Leeds United for most of the season and they went into the Easter Monday clash with Don Revie's men knowing that a victory would go some way to securing first place.

Liverpool had failed to beat Leeds at any point in the previous six years - but that was all about to change.

The visitors still had hopes of overhauling the Reds at the top of the table and could have made things interesting had Peter Lorimer not contrived to miss an open goal just before the interval.

It was a pivotal moment in the match as Peter Cormack fired the home side in front just two minutes after the restart before Keegan struck five minutes from time to clinch a 2-0 victory.

It all-but guaranteed the Reds the title after Arsenal were held to a 2-2 draw at Southampton. The Leeds players showed their respect at full-time when they lined up to applaud the Liverpool players from the pitch.

All that was left was for Shankly's men to go on and secure their first ever European trophy.

The stage was a two-legged UEFA Cup final and the victims were Borussia Moenchengladbach as Liverpool brought the curtain down on a marathon season of 66 matches in style.

The double achievement was all the more remarkable given the fact that the Reds boss used just 16 players throughout the season.