Liverpool secure the win against Newcastle with four goals at Anfield, from four different scorers. The Reds controlled the game from the start to the end. Liverpool stands now six points ahead of… Tottenham.
Today is Boxing Day and the sun is shinning at Anfield, where Liverpool faces Newcastle, currently 15th in the league. TAA, Wijnaldum and Shaqiri are back in the team for Milner, Fabinho and Keïta, respectively.
— Liverpool FC (@LFC) December 26, 2018
Liverpool is the last unbeaten team in the Premier League and are four points clear at the top of the league thanks to Manchester City loss at the Ethiad to Crystal Palace.
The game started slowly as both teams were observing each other. The first opportunity came from the Magpies. Ritchie whipped a deep cross into the box from the left and Joselu headed it but the ball went over the bar. This brought an immediate reaction from the Reds.
GOAL Liverpool! Lovely from Lovren! pic.twitter.com/HzxCeX3OrL
— NBC Sports Soccer (@NBCSportsSoccer) December 26, 2018
Dejan Lovren gives the lead to the home team with a superb half-volley from inside the box. 11th minute, it’s 1-0 for Liverpool.
The game goes on and the chances keep coming for Jürgen Klopp’s team. The Reds control the game. When they win the ball, they go forward and create concret opportunities.
Chances mainly come from the sides, with Robertson and TAA crossing the ball into the box. Mane misses the chance to score the second goal, the winger loses his footing at the wrong moment and ends up missing the ball from TAA.
Just before the half time whistle, Shaqiri’s free kick is brilliantly saved by Dubravka. The referee blows the end of the first half.
People in the stands shouldn’t have been late to their seat as the second half started with a penalty for Liverpool. 424 days since the last league penalty was given to the Reds at Anfield. Salah dribbles into the box and passes Dummett and the left-back pulls him back from behind. The Egyptian converts the penalty, scoring his 12th goal of the season in the Premier League.
Mané could have scored the 3-0 but again, Newcastle goalkeeper makes a remarquable saves to keep his team in the game. Rafa Benitez’s men try to come back in the game with a header from Joselu but it was too easy for Alisson as the ball isn’t on target.
15 minutes into the half, Jürgen Klopp takes off Wijnaldum for Fabinho. The German manages his team for the two big games – Arsenal on 29th and City on 3rd January – coming in the next few days.
Liverpool continue to press and miss several chances to score the third goal. Mané and Firmino successively miss their opportunity due to a brillant Dubravka.
Second substitution for Liverpool as Roberto Firmino is taken off and sees Daniel Sturridge come in for the last 20 minutes of the game.
The Reds finally score their third goal of the afternoon. It was a well worked goal, with Liverpool keeping the pressure on the visitors. Alexander-Arnold assists Shaqiri who only had to push the ball in.
Newcastle try to score, this with the danger coming from Ritchie once again. The Scottland national crosses the ball into the box but Hayden can’t finish.
Last substitution for Liverpool sees Clyne come in for Robertson. Three minutes later, the Reds score the fourth and final goal of the game on a corner. Fabinho beats Diame in the air at the near post and powers his header into the back of the net, it is his first goal in a Liverpool shirt.
At the end of the game, Sturridge has a last chance to add his name on the scoresheet but Dubravka keeps the Englishman out to extend the score to 5-0.
The other big news comes from the other games today. Manchester City lost 2-1 at Leicester, which means Liverpool are seven points ahead of the Citizens. However, Tottenham won their Boxing Day game 5-0 against Bournemouth. The Spurs move above City up to second place, six points behind the Reds.
Alisson; Roberton (Clyne 82′), van Dijk, Lovren, TAA, Wijnaldum (Fabinho 62′), Henderson, Shaqiri, Mané, Firmino (Sturridge 69′), Salah
Subs: Mignolet, Clyne, Fabinho, Keïta, Sturridge, Lallana, Origi
Dubravka; Yedlin, Fernandez, Lascelles, Dummett, Ritchie, Diamé, Hayden, Kenedy, Muto, Joselu
Subs: Woodmann, Manquillo, Schär, Longstaff, Murphy, Perez, Rondon