A much rotated Liverpool made light work of a despondent Bournemouth, with the Reds cruising to a 3-0 victory on the south coast.
There’s nothing like a brisk walk along the seaside to wake you up on a cold afternoon, and that is exactly what Jurgen Klopp‘s men experienced Saturday afternoon.
It was a game in which Liverpool managed over 1000 touches of the ball, forcing their opponents into 35 clearances – absolute total dominance, the only surprise was that the scoreline wasn’t more than the three eventually reached.
However, it was the first time in nine Premier League games that the Reds have kept a clean sheet – more important than goals scored perhaps for Klopp, who mentioned the stat post-match.
The Liverpool captain’s searching ball landed on Oxlade-Chamberlain’s toe and the midfielder poked it home.
One soon became two, and it was from another rotated into the side – Naby Keita. A clever one-two with Salah saw the Guinean start and finish a move of real class, and of course, there were smiles all around.
Keita then turned provider, for Mohamed Salah – who slipped in Liverpool’s third.
Liverpool could have had plenty more if they wanted, instead the Reds just calmly stroked the ball around – making their hosts work hard to try and get at least one touch.
With the game all but won, Klopp gave a debut to Curtis Jones. The one time U9 now had a Premier League game under his young belt, and he didn’t look out of place. Almost grabbing a fourth, but his volley just cleared the Bournemouth bar.
The only sour note, an injury to Dejan Lovren in the first half – however, it looks to have been just a spot of cramp.
It was the perfect result prior to a tricky match midweek in Salzburg, a game the Reds must win (or at least draw) should they wish to make the Champions League round of 16.
Jürgen Klopp saluted a 'super performance' after Liverpool beat Bournemouth 3-0 at Vitality Stadium on Saturday.
Goals from Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Naby Keita in the latter stages of the first half were added to by Mohamed Salah’s clinical finish shortly after the restart on the south coast.
A 15th victory from 16 Premier League outings this season lifts the Reds 11 points clear of second-placed Leicester City at the top of the table, with the Foxes in action on Sunday.
The win also extended Liverpool’s club-record unbeaten run in the division to 33 matches.
As well as offering an update on the condition of Dejan Lovren, who was substituted due to injury in the first half, Klopp spoke about the Reds’ display, Salah and clean sheets in his post-match press conference.
Read on for a full transcript...
On whether it was a ‘perfect’ day other than Lovren’s injury…
It was, 100 per cent. On the other hand side I feel for Eddie because you can lose against us obviously, that can happen, but then losing Ake and [Callum] Wilson [to injury] on a day like this [is difficult]. We scored wonderful goals, had more chances, did really well. We were really uncomfortable to play and from the 3-0 on, we controlled the game absolutely. Nothing really happened anymore, the players didn’t like it too much to be really loud in these moments. I didn’t want to see any unnecessary risks because when you lose the ball it’s not a problem in football but it’s not a time for players to chase constantly, players who run for a counter-attack, I didn’t want that. Maybe it was not the most exciting but it was necessary. Yeah, it was an absolutely super performance, super individual performances and the team performance was just really mature and professional. That’s what we needed today.
On the challenge of maintaining such high standards in the Premier League at such a busy time…
We had so many games which we had to chase until the last second because we were 1-0 down, it was 1-1 or whatever and now when you have this really rare, comfortable situation you should really control the game. We had it a couple of days ago [against Everton] when we were 4-1 up and made it exciting again with a bit of unnecessary lack of concentration I would say, so we had to work much harder than it would have been necessary to at 4-1. But that’s it, so we have to do different things to win football games and today this was the thing we had to do and the boys did it. How I said, wonderful individual performances, the obvious ones like Naby, who was great, Mo, absolutely strong. There were many really, really good players but then especially how we controlled it from midfield with Hendo and Millie, that helped a lot. Joe Gomez after a while out of the centre-half position looked then immediately really natural. All that helped and that’s what you need to win a football game.
On the ‘bonus’ of Salah being back to full fitness…
Absolutely. It’s long ago that he got that knock but you carry things like this with you when have game after game after game. He looks now 100 per cent.
On registering a first clean sheet in 15 games…
I forgot how it feels, to be honest! It’s great, we should have them more often. It was the most-used word in the dressing room by the boys – ‘clean sheet, clean sheet, clean sheet’. Obviously everybody was desperate for that, now we have it so let’s have it more often. The next game where a clean sheet would be useful is already around the corner, against Salzburg on Tuesday. It feels good.
Jürgen Klopp doesn’t believe the issue that forced Dejan Lovren from the field during the first half of Liverpool’s 3-0 win at Bournemouth on Saturday is a serious one.
The defender was replaced by Trent Alexander-Arnold after 40 minutes at Vitality Stadium.
Lovren will continue to be assessed by the club’s medical team; however, Klopp explained the early indications suggest the injury isn’t cause for too much concern.
The manager also confirmed the knocks that ruled Georginio Wijnaldum and Adam Lallana out of the fixture are also deemed only minor.
Klopp told his post-match press conference: “Always you don’t know exactly but it looks not too serious, it looks like a little cramp. He felt something, he told us, said he for sure could go to half-time, wanted to have treatment there and carry on, but we said no and stopped it there.
“That’s the status quo, you have these kind of things in this moment of the season. It is similar to what Gini and Adam Lallana had – not serious but serious enough to keep them out.
“Now we have two days to make sure they can go again. That’s what I think at the moment but I don’t know 100 per cent.”
Liverpool extended their lead at the top of the Premier League to 11 points with a comprehensive 3-0 victory at Bournemouth.
Goals from returning trio Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Naby Keita and Mohamed Salah in a devastating 19-minute spell either side of half-time did the damage for the relentless Reds, who lengthened their club-record top-flight unbeaten streak to 33 matches.
Jürgen Klopp’s team have now amassed 46 points from a possible 48 in the division this season, with their cushion at the summit growing due to second-placed Leicester City not being in action until Sunday.
Curtis Jones made his Premier League debut as a 76th-minute substitute on a day where the only obvious negative was the enforced withdrawal of Dejan Lovren, who had to be replaced due to injury in the first half.
Klopp made seven changes to his starting line-up, with Alisson Becker, Joe Gomez, Jordan Henderson and Roberto Firmino all coming in along with goalscorers Oxlade-Chamberlain, Keita and Salah.
Georginio Wijnaldum and Adam Lallana missed out due to minor knocks.
Liverpool quickly settled into their rhythm, the visitors monopolising possession in the early stages by recycling the ball while seeking an opening.
Their first effort on goal arrived with seven minutes on the clock. Gomez found Salah with a clever pass inside, but the No.11’s attempted curler into the far top corner was fielded by Aaron Ramsdale.
The Reds’ front-foot approach was maintained throughout the first 20 minutes, but their final pass lacked incision as Bournemouth sat in with plenty of men behind the play.
A first foray forward of note by the hosts saw a shot by former Liverpool striker Dominic Solanke deflected wide by Lovren, before James Milner directed an attempt narrowly off target following a neat one-two with Salah.
Eddie Howe’s side appeared to gain confidence for a period and Virgil van Dijk’s perfectly-timed sliding tackle thwarted Solanke after Keita had been pick-pocketed by Ryan Fraser in midfield.
Nathan Ake replicated his international teammate at the other end to dispossess Salah, who had latched onto Keita’s through-ball, but the centre-back hurt himself while doing so and had to be replaced.
And within a couple of minutes of that change, Liverpool had the lead, with Oxlade-Chamberlain’s stretching volley beating Ramsdale from Henderson’s marvellous raking pass.
Injury then induced another substitution, this time for the Reds as Lovren was withdrawn for Trent Alexander-Arnold.
Despite that disruption, the visitors subsequently shifted through the gears and deservedly doubled their advantage prior to the break when Keita collected an ingenious backheel by Salah and slotted in from close range.
Salah himself could have furthered Bournemouth’s pain in stoppage time, but the Egyptian failed to convert at the back post after Firmino had flicked on Alexander-Arnold’s corner.
The assurance that characterised Liverpool’s play in the closing stages of the first period was again in evidence immediately after the restart.
Ramsdale got down well to save a snap-shot volley by Keita, but the Bournemouth goalkeeper was beaten again nine minutes into half as the No.8 returned the favour for Salah.
Keita intercepted Jack Simpson’s wayward pass and slipped in his teammate, who duly dispatched a cool, clinical finish into the far bottom corner.
Ramsdale denied Salah - a goalscorer for the fifth game in succession versus the Cherries - when the forward ran onto Henderson’s pass and blasted at goal, but Liverpool continued applying pressure with a persistence that belied how comfortable the scoreline had become.
Jones nearly capped an impressive cameo with a goal, the young Scouser’s left-footed volley from 20 yards clearing the crossbar, but the Reds had already done more than enough in a consummate, dominant display.
Last Updated: 07/12/19 7:03pm2:53 FREE TO WATCH: Highlights from Liverpool's win over Bournemouth in the Premier League FREE TO WATCH: Highlights from Liverpool's win over Bournemouth in the Premier League
Liverpool surged 11 points clear at the top of the Premier League eased to a 3-0 win against Bournemouth, who lost Nathan Ake and Callum Wilson to injury.
Jurgen Klopp's side barely made it out of third gear at the Vitality Stadium, and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain (35) opened up the scoring just a minute after Ake - who had been Bournemouth's best defender until that point - to an apparent hamstring strain.
Naby Keita and Mohamed Salah combined for Liverpool's next two goals, with the former slotting home just before the break (44) before Salah produced a cool finish not long after the restart (54). Bournemouth suffered another injury blow 10 minutes later when Wilson also hobbled off, piling more misery onto their fifth successive league defeat.
For Liverpool though, they are now 11 points clear at the top of the Premier League and have kept their first clean sheet in 13 games. Bournemouth remain in 15th, but could slip further down the table with those around them playing over the next two days.How Liverpool cruised to another win Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain celebrates after giving Liverpool the lead at the Vitality Stadium
It was a low-key start on the south coast, with Bournemouth having the first sights of goal. In the 20th minute, Ryan Fraser slipped in former Liverpool striker Dominic Solanke down the right, but his strike was put into the side of the net by the body of Dejan Lovren. Fraser was involved again a few minutes later, this time setting up Arnaut Groeneveld but he dragged his shot just wide of the far post.
But for all of their good early work at both ends, the game turned when Bournemouth suffered a massive injury blow just after the half-hour mark. Ake made a well-timed clearance ahead of Salah, but as he did so, looked to have pulled his hamstring. Liverpool eventually put the ball out of play so the medics could come on, and Ake was soon replaced by Jack Simpson.Player ratings
Bournemouth: Ramsdale (5), Ake (6), Francis (7), Mepham (6), Rico (6), Fraser (6), Lerma (6), Biling (6), Groeneveld (6), Solanke (6), C Wilson (6).
Subs used: Simpson (5), Cook (5), Gosling (5).
Liverpool: Alisson (5), Gomez (7), Van Dijk (8), Lovren (6), Robertson (7), Henderson (7), Milner (7), Oxlade-Chamberlain (7), Keita (8), Firmino (7), Salah (8).
Subs used: Alexander-Arnold (7), Jones (6), Shaqiri (n/a).
Man of the match: Mohamed Salah.
A minute after Ake's departure, and Liverpool took the lead. A wonderful long pass from Jordan Henderson picked out the run of Oxlade-Chamberlain. Chris Mepham could not keep up with his pace and Aaron Ramsdale had come well off his line to try and put the Liverpool midfielder off, but his hesitation allowed Oxlade-Chamberlain to flick the ball past him.
From then, the game was Liverpool's and they added another just before the break. It was a wonderful attacking move as Keita picked out Salah at the top of the area. The Egypt forward held the ball up superbly with three defenders surrounding him before back heeling the ball into Keita's path. It was then an easy finish for Guinea international, who slotted home past Ramsdale.
Nine minutes after the restart and Liverpool added their third. It was a terrible error from Simpson, with his pass landing into the path of Keita, allowing the Liverpool forward to drive towards the area. He slotted it in for Salah at the far post and with Ramsdale once again off his line, the forward was able to coolly slot into the far corner.
Bournemouth already had a number of first-team players out of action ahead of the game but their injury list added another name just after the hour mark, as a second key man had to be substituted. Wilson tried to run after a pass, with Trent Alexander-Arnold in pursuit, but pulled up with what looked like a strain. He was soon taken off and Dan Gosling came on.Callum Wilson was substituted with an injury in the second half
The hosts did in fact have the ball in the net in the 66th minute, but it was ruled out for offside. It was a nice move from the hosts too as Jefferson Lerma fed Diego Rico down the left, with his subsequent cross turned home by Groeneveld, but the linesman's flag was up. It was the correct decision too with Rico massively offside in the build-up as Bournemouth's bad luck continued.
Liverpool had a few more chances as the game meandered to a conclusion, but should have added a fourth with the last kick of the game. The visitors were awarded a free kick in the final minute, with Henderson and Salah playing it short to one another before the Liverpool captain curled the ball goalwards, but a leaping save from Ramsdale acrobatically tipped it around the post.What the managers said
Liverpool's Jurgen Klopp: "The boys made a lot of good decisions and that's why it was a comfortable win, maybe more than we would have expected before the game, but Bournemouth were in a difficult situation, losing two key players, and then you get a feeling that it's not a Bournemouth day.
"But we scored wonderful goals, had other big chances and the result is most important, but the performance was really good as well, especially in the second half when we were really professional and assured. That's what we have to be in the moment and it's not about being constantly exciting, it's about doing the right stuff. There were not a lot of difficult moments to defend, which is good and very important so nearly a perfect day."2:50 Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp says that due to Bournemouth losing key players during the game their 3-0 win was more comfortable than anticipated. Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp says that due to Bournemouth losing key players during the game their 3-0 win was more comfortable than anticipated.
Bournemouth's Eddie Howe: "The game seemed to hinge on Nathan's injury. Up until that point, we had looked relatively solid, we were in the game, we were a threat at different moments but he gets his injury and we concede seconds later. It was a hammer blow, a double whammy with the injury and the goal and we never recovered.
"We're going to need players to win games - you don't win matches and get points in the Premier League without good players and we've got such a long injury list now that it's obviously a big concern for the future. We've got games coming up thick and fast and we can't let this run continue."2:12 Eddie Howe believes Bournemouth 'never really recovered' after Nathan Ake's injury in their 4-0 home loss to Liverpool in the Premier League. Eddie Howe believes Bournemouth 'never really recovered' after Nathan Ake's injury in their 4-0 home loss to Liverpool in the Premier League. Man of the match - Mohamed Salah Mohamed Salah celebrates with team-mates after scoring Liverpool's third
This could have been either Salah or Keita after their superb attacking performances, but the Egypt forward just takes the accolade. He was rested in midweek and it clearly did him the world of good, looking dangerous every time he picked up the ball and showing off his trademark flare.
His attacking stats make for some impressive reading too. He had five shots, four of which were on target and one was a very well-taken goal from a man clearly enjoying his football in this special side. He also made four key passes, picking up an assist among those, which was a sensational back pass for Keita - it was almost instinctive.Merson: These are the games that win the PL Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain scored a minute after Nathan Ake went off injured
Analysis from Paul Merson on Soccer Saturday:
"These are the games that, for me, win you the Premier League.
"I know they're not in form but, they have a go, Bournemouth. You look and think, 'That's not the easiest game'. Liverpool made it look like an FA Cup third-round game against a League Two or a non-league team. That's no disrespect to Bournemouth but that's how Liverpool made them look; they were head and shoulders above - so, so comfortable.
"The Bournemouth goalkeeper's got to come for the first goal but Mo Salah played in second gear - he was outstanding. Jurgen Klopp's getting his changes right. I didn't think this Liverpool team had it in them, to rotate and not be weaker, but we've seen in these last few weeks that they can. The thing for me, too, is that this is not the Man City of last season. Liverpool just have to stay focused and I think it's theirs."Opta stats
It's another tricky fixture for Bournemouth next weekend as they travel to Chelsea in the Premier League (kick-off 3pm). Liverpool face a crucial midweek trip to Red Bull Salzburg in the Champions League (kick-off 5.55pm), needing a draw to see them into the last 16. They will then face struggling Watford in the Premier League on Saturday (kick-off 12.30pm).Soccer Saturday Super 6
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Liverpool U18s bounced back in style from their FA Youth Cup exit as they won 5-1 away at Derby County on Saturday.
Trailing to a Jack Stretton effort five minutes before the break a devastating spell of three goals in four minutes turned the game for Barry Lewtas’ charges.
Three minutes after half-time captain Fidel O’Rourke made it 1-1 and then a double quick strike from Jake Cain doubled the lead.
Layton Stewart added a fourth goal on 70 minutes before a last minute own goal from Jaden Charles made it 5-1.
Reflecting on the win, Lewtas told Liverpoolfc.com: “We have had a tough week and the lads were disappointed to go out of the FA Youth Cup on Monday but this was a nice response.
“We were 1-0 down at half-time but still played some really nice football and we kept creating chances.
“We got the breakthrough and in the end we were quite ruthless and clinical which was pleasing from our point of view.
“We put them under a lot of pressure and it was a really good way to end our league programme for this year.”
Liverpool U18s: Davies, Bradley, Beck, Quansah, Savage, Clarkson, Morton, Cain (Wilson, 80), O’Rourke (Stewart, 56), Corness, Balagizi (Walls, 64).
Subs not used: Hewitson (GK), Rodriguez.
Liverpool make seven changes for this afternoon’s Premier League encounter with Bournemouth.
Alisson Becker returns from suspension in goal, while Joe Gomez comes into defence.
Jordan Henderson and Naby Keita begin in midfield, with Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Mohamed Salah and Roberto Firmino leading the attack.
Georginio Wijnaldum and Adam Lallana are both ruled out due to minor knocks.
Liverpool: Alisson, Gomez, Lovren, Van Dijk, Robertson, Henderson, Milner, Keita, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Salah, Firmino.
Subs: Adrian, Mane, Shaqiri, Origi, Jones, Alexander-Arnold, Elliott.
In her latest column, Liverpool FC Women manager Vicky Jepson previews Sunday's Women's Super League clash with West Ham United at Prenton Park.
It goes without saying we are looking forward to being back on home turf again after a few tough away fixtures against Arsenal and Manchester City. Although we lost both those games 1-0, we can take a lot from both of those games and we could easily have got something out of both of them. Sometimes scorelines are a false reflection of a performance, which can obviously be very tough to take.
It is a result-driven environment and it has been tough to take that we are not taking points from games when we’ve achieved so much during those 90 minutes. Arsenal won the Women’s Super League last year, they had a big win against Bristol City in their last game and we knew what they are capable of with the quality they have in their squad. We really did frustrate them and it was unfortunate we didn’t go ahead when Sophie Bradley-Auckland was so unlucky to hit the post.
In last Sunday’s game at Manchester City our second-half performance was outstanding and I was really impressed with that. The last 30 minutes of the game we really pushed on and were unfortunate not to score. We are just missing that spark in the final third of the field at the moment to put the ball in the back of the net, but there’s no added pressure on the players, I see every day in training we do have some really clinical finishers.
We were really disappointed to concede the way we did from a set-piece and we know we have to be better than that. Defending from set-pieces is something that we are usually quite good at and, such is the way, it had to be our former captain Gemma Bonner who got the goal. We watched the goal back in our post-match review and we were really disappointed with it and, to be fair, the players held their hands up.
Sunday’s opponents West Ham scored from three set-pieces during their win against Manchester United in their last game so we have to be aware of that. We are really looking forward to the game and we know how tough a test West Ham will be. I know last season we took six points off them but they weren’t given to us and we had to work so hard for them. Matt Beard is a very good friend of mine so it will be great to see him as always but for us, we will be very focused and make sure we manage ourselves at the best possible level to compete and get the right result.
We are looking forward to playing at home and it’s our first home game since we got that wonderful opportunity to play at Anfield in front of 23,000 supporters who were incredible. We have three home games now in succession before the end of the year, with Durham in the Continental Tyres Cup on Wednesday night and then Chelsea on the Sunday, but our only focus is West Ham. Hopefully we can see a few of those supporters come and see us on Sunday and really raise the roof off Prenton Park.
Kick-off at Prenton Park is at 2pm GMT and fans who have your ticket from the fixture against Everton at Anfield can simply show your ticket stubs from that game to claim free entry on Sunday. Click here for more details.
Liverpool welcome back Alisson Becker today after his one-match suspension and, as of Friday lunchtime, had no fresh injury concerns to consider.
Adam Smith was the latest addition to Bournemouth's injury list, which also includes Steve Cook and Joshua King.
Harry Wilson, who has scored six league goals for the Cherries this season, is ineligible against his parent club.