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Mo’s mojo and Thiago’s beauty – 5 talking points from Liverpool 4-0 Man United

Liverpool are back on top of the Premier League table, having dispatched of both Manchester clubs in the past few days – this time thrashing United at Anfield.

Liverpool 4-0 Man United

Anfield, Premier League
Tuesday 19 April, 2022

Goals: Diaz 5′, Salah 22′, 84′, Mane 67′

 

Awesome Anfield atmosphere

The most incredible noise and backing of the season at Anfield.

Liverpool fans came in a buoyant mood, no question, thanks to the weekend semi-final win and the fact they are roaring on all fronts. We’re the most in-form side around and trying to win the lot.

And it showed: pre-kick-off it was already noisy and banners were out in force, then once the game got underway it wasn’t long before the chants turned to cheers as the opener went in. Jurgen’s song getting a few good airings was also good to hear.

It’s also definitely worth mentioning the poignant and respectful minute’s applause the entire crowd offered to Cristiano Ronaldo and his family once the clock hit seven. Some other sides’ fanbases should perhaps take note.

Full time brought Dua Lipa’s One Kiss and yet more Jurgen fist pump celebrations. These are absolutely the days.

 

Welcome back to the scoresheet, Mo!

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Tuesday, April 19, 2022: Liverpool's Mohamed Salah celebrates after scoring the second goal during the FA Premier League match between Liverpool FC and Manchester United FC at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Well deserved, much needed and very much appreciated – Mohamed Salah is a goalscorer once more!

The Egyptian King started the game on fire and within the first quarter he had both a goal and an assist, gone close another time and generally given the weird Maguire-Dalot combo on that flank an absolute hammering.

Considering he had scored once in the league since 23 February, it speaks volumes of just how good he was earlier in the season that with these strikes – his 21st and 22nd of the campaign – he’s still five clear in the top scorer charts.

If these goals, this performance, starts him on another big run of confidence and clinical finishing, it couldn’t come at a better time for the Reds.

 

Thiago and Mane, form of the year

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Tuesday, April 19, 2022: Liverpool's Thiago Alcantara applauds the supporters as he is substituted during the FA Premier League match between Liverpool FC and Manchester United FC at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

It’s actually unfair on other teams just how well Thiago Alcantara is playing at the moment. This was one of the best individual performances Anfield has ever seen.

The FA Cup semi-final showing against City might be the most complete and exquisite central midfield performance seen in a Liverpool shirt since Steven Gerrard’s prime – but this was not far off the same level.

His first touch, that playful roll of the foot over the ball, the exaggerated stepovers which fool every opponent and the outrageous passing through the lines – it’s a real difference-maker which few individuals or teams can match.

Meanwhile, Sadio Mane is also in his best form of the season by a distance.

Playing centre-forward, as we’ve noted here previously, really suits his best traits and he gets to be hugely involved in build-up play.

It’s now seven goals in 2022 in the Premier League for the No10, plus another in Europe – and a first assist since November, too. Sensational.

 

Mind the gap

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Tuesday, April 19, 2022: Liverpool's Fabio Henrique Tavares 'Fabinho' (L) and Manchester United's Bruno Fernandes during the FA Premier League match between Liverpool FC and Manchester United FC at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Take what you like from the game, but appreciate what a turnaround has occurred between these two clubs over the last decade.

And revel in it.

For so long throughout the 1990s and 2000s Liverpool chased this club, struggled to keep pace in spending, in expectation, in trophies – in every regard, if we’re being honest.

We thrashed them for the second time this season. The aggregate score of 9-0 from the two games almost doesn’t do justice the amount of dominance the Reds had, how much superior they are on the pitch.

And yet over a prolonged period, it might be more notable and relevant to point out we’re streets ahead of them off it, too.

Our recruitment, our clear hierarchy, the expertise in all areas, the forward-thinking nature of the club – it’s all in harmony and has all allowed us to, once Klopp was in place, climb to the very top of world football.

 

Top of the table and coming for it all

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Tuesday, April 19, 2022: Liverpool's Sadio Mané celebrates after scoring the third goal during the FA Premier League match between Liverpool FC and Manchester United FC at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

It’s getting harder to not throw caution to the wind and just say sod it, we’re winning it all!

But of course, it’s still Man City who hold the advantage in the league; they play tomorrow night at home to Brighton and will go back to the top with a win of their own.

Still, putting the pressure on and continuing to rack up the points is all the Reds can do and is exactly what they did.

And next up? Just the Merseyside derby.

It’s all. Still. On.

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