Alisson ends 10-year wait as Klopp notches 150th – 5 key stats from Liverpool 2-0 Man United

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Alisson enjoyed a particularly impressive evening as Liverpool beat Man United 2-0 to record the 150th win of Jurgen Klopp‘s reign at the club.

The victory pushed the Reds further clear at the top of the Premier League, with a 16-point gap now between them and the closest challengers in Man City.

Virgil van Dijk and Mohamed Salah scored either side of half-time to clinch the three points, but a largely one-sided affair should have brought a more comfortable result for Liverpool.

Nevertheless, it was a convincing win for the hosts, more notably for the fans, who for the first time this season sang “now you’re gonna believe us, we’re gonna win the league.”

Here are five key statistics from a landmark win at Anfield.

 

Alisson Ends a 10-Year Wait

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Sunday, January 19, 2020: Liverpool's Mohamed Salah celebrates scoring the second goal with team-mate goalkeeper Alisson Becker during the FA Premier League match between Liverpool FC and Manchester United FC at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

On a weekend when Pepe Reina made his return to the Premier League, Alisson produced his best impression of Liverpool’s last great goalkeeper.

With his long ball for Salah’s 93rd-minute strike, the Brazilian became the first Liverpool stopper to record an assist in the Premier League since Reina in 2010:

His celebration, running the full length of the pitch to embrace the Egyptian King, saw him emulate Reina after David N’Gog’s goal in a win with the same scoreline over United back in 2009.

Alisson‘s setup saw him draw level with a host of notable names in the assist charts in the English top flight, as highlighted by Andrew Beasley:

And according to Infogol, his total expected assists (0.39) for the current term is now higher than the likes of Ashley Barnes (0.29), Matt Doherty (0.29) and Nemanja Matic (0.05).

 

Rock at the Back

LONDON, ENGLAND - Saturday, January 11, 2020: Liverpool's goalkeeper Alisson Becker celebrates after the FA Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur FC and Liverpool FC at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium. Liverpool won 1-0. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

More crucial than Alisson‘s assist, however, were his efforts between the sticks.

The 27-year-old made four saves at Anfield, again as with the previous weekend at Tottenham higher than his season’s average per game, and this helped Liverpool keep another clean sheet.

According to Sky Sports, the Reds became the first side in over a decade to record seven consecutive shutouts in the Premier League, with this being the best since Man United‘s 14 in a row between 2008 and 2009.

And as highlighted by Liverpool statistician Ged Rea, Alisson drew level with Reina for the most clean sheets in his first 50 full league games for the club:

Data analyst Dan Kennett detailed how Alisson has now saved the last 21 shots on target he has faced in all competitions, with 18 in the Premier League since Wilfried Zaha’s goal for Crystal Palace on November 23.

Furthermore, Kennett produced the remarkable statistic that by the time Liverpool make the trip to Wolves on Thursday night, it will have been two months since the last goal our No. 1 conceded in the league.

 

An Unlikely Duo?

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Sunday, January 19, 2020: Liverpool's xxxx during the FA Premier League match between Liverpool FC and Manchester United FC at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Van Dijk’s opener was the result of hours of work from the players on the training ground, and by Klopp’s analytics staff.

Peter Krawietz had identified United were weaker defending at the near post due to their zonal marking approach, and Van Dijk was on hand to rise above Brandon Williams, Fred and Harry Maguire to head past a hapless David de Gea.

But the goal would not have been possible were it not for the delivery of Trent Alexander-Arnold, who according to Opta recorded his fifth league assist from a set-piece this season.

This is the most of any player in Europe’s top five leagues, and as noted by Beasley, there are now only four more effective goalscoring combinations in the Premier League this term than Van Dijk and Alexander-Arnold:

Meanwhile, Van Dijk’s goal was his eighth in the league for Liverpool, with no centre-back scoring more since his switch in January 2018, Opta have highlighted.

 

Klopp’s 150th

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Sunday, January 19, 2020: Liverpool's manager Jürgen Klopp reacts during the FA Premier League match between Liverpool FC and Manchester United FC at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Sunday’s win was the 150th of Klopp’s reign in all competitions, in 244 games, and as detailed by Rea, his last 50 have come in a remarkably short span of 63.

Liverpool are now drawing near to their all-time English top tier record of 21 league wins in a row at home, currently on 19, and are also close to surpassing Man City‘s Premier League record of 20.

The Reds have also scored in each of their 22 league games so far this season, which according to Opta makes them the first side since Arsenal in 2001/02 to do so.

And as Rea explained, they are the first Liverpool side to produce this feat in the club’s history.

Salah’s goal means he has now found the back of the net against 23 of the 24 Premier League sides he has faced more than once, Opta noted, with Swansea the only side not to fall to the Egyptian King.

 

The Route to the Title

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Sunday, January 19, 2020: Liverpool's captain Jordan Henderson celebrates after the FA Premier League match between Liverpool FC and Manchester United FC at Anfield.(Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Most importantly, Liverpool are now only 30 points away from guaranteeing their first-ever Premier League title, and their 19th top-tier title in history.

Shortly after full-time, Beasley explained the route the Reds can take to lifting the trophy:

There is a very real possibility of Liverpool winning the title at Goodison on March 14, or the Etihad on April 4.

And now you’re gonna believe us.

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