With two goals in 143 seconds, Liverpool have put a significant dent in Chelsea’s hope at the UEFA champions league next season.
Liverpool scored two quick-fire second-half goals to defeat Chelsea 2-0 at Anfield, thanks to goals from Sadio Mane and a Mohamed Salah beauty, to retain top spot on the English Premier League table ahead of Manchester City- with an extra game in hand- who also won 3-1 at Crystal Palace.
After their exploits in the Champions League in midweek, both clubs returned to EPL action on Sunday afternoon to continue their chase for the EPL crown which looks like going to the wire.
The last time Liverpool came so close to winning the EPL title for the first time since 1990 was in 2014 but a Steven Gerrard slip led to Chelsea winning the tie and Liverpool surrendering the title, but there was to be no repeat this time, Mane and Salah proving top dogs again.
Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool came flying out of the blocks like they usually do, the two goalscorers, Mane and Salah connecting to create the opportunity, Mane crossing for Salah who’s volley at the back post was saved by Kepa Arrizabalaga.
Liverpool dominated possession and put their London opponents under pressure throughout the half, but Chelsea were dangerous on the break through Eden Hazard and William, and both attackers had a sight of goal on the counter but their attempts were weak.
Six minutes into the second half, Anfield erupted as Mane gave Liverpool a deserved lead. The Senegalese forward was left unmarked to nod in workaholic Jordan Henderson’s cross.
Two minutes later, Salah sealed the game with a beauty of a goal which reeked of world class. The Egyptian king, with the ball at his feet from 25 yards, cut inward unto his left foot and let fly, the ball swerving before hitting the top corner for a two-goal lead.
Despite being two goals down, Mauricio Sarri’s Chelsea lads, however, carved out two wonderful openings which fell to their talisman, Hazard, but the Belgian hit the woodwork when send free by David Luiz’s ball over the defender, while his shot from four yards required a great save from Alisson Becker to deny The Blues a way back into the match.
Liverpool saw out the match to retain top spot on 85 points with four games to go, two points ahead of Manchester City who have five games left to play.
Pep Guardiola’s men were made to endure a tense end to the game at Palace before Gabriel Jesus’ last-minute goal ensured the 3-1 win.
Raheem Sterling scored twice to put City on the way but Milivojevic’s smart free-kick halved the deficit on 81 minutes, putting City under pressure before Jesus sealed the win.
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