It might surprise you to learn that Erling Haaland had only won one Premier League Player of the Month award this season, while Marcus Rashford has taken home three. Altogether less surprising is the lack of Liverpool representation on the list.

But there is a chance that could change for the month of April, with Diogo Jota one of eight players shortlisted for the monthly honor. The Liverpool forward scored five goals and claimed two assists across that period, marking just his second full month back from injury with an explosive return to form.

He has left Jürgen Klopp with almost no choice when it comes to team selection, with back-to-back braces setting him out as Liverpool’s form attacker. When the manager did leave him out, having suffered a slight knock, he came off the bench to score a dramatic late winner.

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Whether Liverpool gets itself a Player of the Month winner remains to be seen. It’s a competitive field, with Jota up against Haaland, Kevin De Bruyne, Eberechi Eze, Callum Wilson, Alexander Isak, Ollie Watkins and former Klopp striker Dominic Solanke.

But even being nominated is a recognition of the great work Jota has done for Liverpool, helping fire the Reds to the top end of the form table for the first time all season. Klopp will surely be delighted.

However, he could be forgiven if that delight is tinged with frustration. Liverpool’s poor season has seen just about everything questioned — Klopp has been no exception, with the manager himself under scrutiny at times. But the sudden uplift upon the return of Jota and then Luis Díaz paints a narrative of a campaign primarily defined by injuries.

The midfield, and latterly the defense, have been more or less written off in some quarters, with a holistic rebuild slated for the summer. Clearly, there is work that legitimately needs to be done in those departments. But ultimately, the return of two of Liverpool’s best forwards — with Jota in particular shining, having had the chance to get up to speed — has restored the kind of form that previously allowed Klopp to challenge for titles.

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Liverpool manager Jürgen Klopp.

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As it is, the revival has probably come too late to even salvage Champions League football, although Liverpool will fight until the end of the campaign. It is impossible not to ask the question of how different the season might have been if Jota had been more available, with the Reds ‘boasting’ by far the worst injury record in the division.

Of course, it is valid to question why that might be the case. Lack of transfer market investment left a lot of strain on certain individuals, and the team’s age profile has passed the optimal zone. More informed observers could potentially speculate over the Liverpool medical department, although it would be pure guesswork for the layman to comment.

But ultimately, everyone would concede that there is some element of luck when it comes to injuries. Liverpool has had none of that fortune, and it has made every transfer market gamble taken up to this point look like a colossal mistake. That’s reflected poorly on Klopp, on FSG and on just about everyone associated with the club.

So Jota’s revival, as recognized by the Player of the Month nomination, is certainly welcome. But it’s also an insight into a parallel Premier League season, one where Liverpool’s ‘decline’ was far less marked. An element of frustration is only human.