Liverpool have gone more than an entire year undefeated in the Premier League. This includes this current season, during which they have won all their games except that one with a solitary draw at the beginning of the year.
Manchester United were that team, when they took on Liverpool at Old Trafford in October. This gave pundits and United fans some hope that their struggles in the Premier League would be over this year. However, this has not been the case and the Red Devils are sitting 5th in the Premier League table, having won just nine of their 24 games this season.
United have been beaten by teams that, just a few years ago, would have been walk-overs for them. They lost 2-0 to Burnley at home on 22nd January, despite beating them 2-0 less than a month earlier when playing away. United also lost 2-0 to Watford just before Christmas, as well as several other embarrassing defeats.
On the other hand, Liverpool have been favourites to win the Premier League all season, and since they have been unbeaten in a league game all year, their odds have only got better.
They beat Everton 1-0 away with one of the youngest teams ever, and showed complete dominance when they beat Leicester City 4-0 on Boxing Day. They look unstoppable this season, and have a chance of finishing the season with an astonishing 112 points, two less than the maximum available.
Liverpool vs Manchester United
Liverpool vs Manchester United is the oldest and most fierce rivalry in the Premier League. This stems from the industrial revolution, when Manchester built a canal that removed the need for cargo ships heading to the city to stop at Liverpool’s docks.
Liverpool fans were confident that they would be able to keep up their unbeaten record this season, but were more cautious facing United than any other team in the Premier League. However, these concerns would prove to be unwarranted, with Liverpool finishing the game 2-0 up.
Liverpool completely dominated the game at Anfield. They maintained possession of the ball for longer, keeping it for 54% of the game. They had 7 more attempts at a goal than United, made 54 more passes, and played fairer – with a single yellow card and 7 fouls, compared to United’s 3 and 10 respectively.
The first of the two goals game just 14 minutes into the game, when Virgil van Dijk headed the ball into the net from a right-wing corner, despite being marked heavily by Brandon Williams.
A second goal by Firmino after 25 minutes was ultimately disallowed after a controversial VAR decision that ruled Van Dijk had committed a foul in the lead up to the goal. Another goal was disallowed as the linesman ruled Wijnaldum offside.
United’s defence seemed flimsy throughout the game, and appeared no match for Liverpool, despite the home side not putting in their best performance.
The entire second half went goalless until the final seconds of stoppage time. In a last ditch attempt to score a goal, Liverpool’s goalkeeper, Alisson, booted the ball almost the entire distance of the pitch. This was received by an undefended Salah, who seemed to effortlessly run the ball into the box and slide it into the goal.
Alisson quickly ran the entire distance of the pitch to embrace Salah as the two celebrated this spectacular goal.
“We’re going to win the league”
As the final whistle blew, chants of “we’re going to win the league” drowned out everything else at Anfield. The reds have had the best start to a Premier League season ever, and their victory over Manchester United mean they sit 13 points ahead of second place Manchester City, with two games in hand.
United fans were left disappointed after the team spent most of the game looking lost. A better performance and a few less mistakes from Liverpool could have resulted in a 5 or 6 goal win instead of just two. Although the Red Devils saw a bit of a boost towards the end of the second half, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has a lot to ponder.