Mohamed Salah Joins Premier League 100 Club as Reds Run Riot
Mohamed Salah: Liverpool’s Centurion
The opening goal was the 100th in the Premier League for the Egyptian who became the fifth quickest of all time to the tally. Only Alan Shearer, Harry Kane, Sergio Aguero and Thierry Henry have hit the milestone quicker than the Liverpool man.
Salah’s goal was trademark Liverpool, after some link up play with Joel Matip, the latter worked the ball to Trent Alexander-Arnold. The England full-back delivered a delightful ball into the middle, allowing Salah to slot the ball home with ease.
It looked destined for Salah to double his tally for the afternoon as the ball fell to him with an open net. Pascal Struijk had other ideas, diving in to block the effort and sending it behind for a corner. Alexander-Arnold delivered the resulting set-piece to Virgil van Dijk, who nodded down to Fabinho. Ironically, on his second go at it, Fabinho powered home. Typical given that it was only late on Friday that the Brazilian was cleared to play by FIFA.
Three minutes into stoppage time, Sadio Mane finally had his goal. After ten previous attempts, the Senegalese forward eventually had the ball in the net. A brilliant cross from the left by Jordan Henderson picked out Thiago deep in the box. He brought the ball down superbly before slotting the ball to Mane who swivelled before finishing emphatically.
Jurgen Klopp’s side dominated the game and never really looked under any threat. Rodrigo had an early chance after five minutes, but fired his effort straight at the Liverpool number one. A few half chances fell the way of Leeds, but nothing major. The most noticeable was an audacious hit from Patrick Bamford who almost chipped Alisson from distance. The Reds will be wondering how it wasn’t more than three, especially given Mane missed an open net in the first half after Diogo Jota’s ball was slightly behind him.
Harvey Elliott’s Injury Overshadows Emphatic Victory
Just before the hour mark, Pascal Struijk received a red card for a challenge on Liverpool youngster, Harvey Elliott. While the extent of the injury is currently unknown, it didn’t look good. Salah screamed for the physios to come on before turning away in shock. Curtis Jones had his head in his hands as Elliott was in clear discomfort. Manager Jurgen Klopp was understandably devastated, with the 18-year-old having a pivotal role in the opening stages to the season.
It was a rather subdued atmosphere after the challenge. So at the full-time whistle it was a rather downcast reaction from Klopp and his players, despite the emphatic performance.
Craig Pawson showed a straight red card for the challenge, much to the shock of the Leeds players. The Leeds man appeared to win the ball, but the nature of the challenge didn’t give the referee much option other than to produce the red card. It appeared to be a freak accident, but Struijk still lunged in from the back/side of Elliott, catching him dangerously. Given the graphic nature of the challenge, we didn’t see a replay, making it hard to judge accurately.
How Much Will Liverpool Miss Him?
Liverpool have been criticised for a lack of spending, but Harvey Elliott was like a new signing for the Anfield side. Slotting into the midfield and performing to a high standard, he didn’t look out of place. Liverpool fans were excited by his performances and rightly so. Elliott was one of the main attacking outlets for the Reds last time out against European Champions Chelsea. There’s no doubt a player who was performing like Elliott will be a huge loss.
The injury leaves Klopp with the likes of Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Naby Keita and Curtis Jones to call on in his place.
Jurgen Klopp Has His Say
Jurgen Klopp had the following to say to Sky Sports after the game: “It is a bad injury, ankle, I heard it was dislocated, we could put it back, he’s now in the hospital but we have to wait obviously.
He played again an incredible game he’s an incredible player, now he’s out. Do I want such a young boy having this experience that early in his career? No, but it’s now the case, we have to be there and we will be there. We will play football without him but we will wait for him as well because obviously he’s a top, top, top, player.”
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