It has become a recurring theme of Liverpool’s post-match debrief, with the players underlining the importance of a clean sheet to their success.
“So I think as a unit we did well and ground it out.”
For Liverpool it is certainly a collective effort, but as the end of the season nears, the man in line for the individual award is Alisson, who leads compatriot Ederson in the race for the Golden Glove.
Having kept his 20th league clean sheet of the season, in only his 32nd appearance, the 29-year-old tops the charts in the English top flight.
Ederson (19) is close behind, with Hugo Lloris (13), Edouard Mendy (13) and Aaron Ramsdale (12) far off as they complete the top five.
That reflects the ridiculous consistency of both Liverpool and Man City as they find themselves still neck-and-neck in the race for the title, with Jurgen Klopp and Pep Guardiola recognising the importance of a rock-solid defence.
Remarkably, Alisson became the first goalkeeper in any of Europe’s top-tier divisions to hit the 20 clean sheet landmark on Saturday.
And worldwide, only three ‘keepers have recorded more shutouts than Alisson, those being Municipal’s Ricardo Jerez Jr. (22), Nagoya Grampus’ Mitchell Langerak (21) and Malacateco’s Dario Silva (21).
Jerez and Silva both play in Liga Nacional Clausura, the Guatemalan top flight, while Langerak – a former player of Klopp’s at Borussia Dortmund – plies his trade in the J1 League in Japan.
Not only is there a gulf in standards faced by Alisson and the trio of Jerez, Langerak and Silva, but it is also important to note that they have all played at least six games more, and in Jerez’s case, as many as 17.
Braulio Linares is the only other top-flight goalkeeper in the world to keep 20 clean sheets so far, and he too plays in Guatemala.
Clean sheets, Europe’s top five leagues
At the time of writing, no other goalkeeper in Europe’s top five leagues has even kept 15 clean sheets, with AC Milan’s Mike Maignan, Inter Milan’s Samir Handanovic and Real Madrid’s Thibaut Courtois all on 14.
Of goalkeepers to play 20 or more games, none have conceded fewer goals than Alisson (20 in 32 appearances), who is level with Maignan (20 in 28) and Brentford‘s David Raya (20 in 20) having played more games.