LONDON, United
Liverpool moved an incredible 19 points clear at the top of the
Premier League as Mohamed Salah and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain secured a 2-0 win
at West Ham on Wednesday.

Jurgen Klopp’s side have turned the title race into a
procession and the runaway leaders saw off struggling West Ham to make it a
remarkable 23 victories from 24 league games this season.

Salah opened the scoring with a first half penalty at the
London Stadium and Oxlade-Chamberlain wrapped up Liverpool’s 15th successive
league win after the interval. 

Second placed Manchester City are now so far behind
Liverpool that the question is not if but when the Reds clinch their first
English league title since 1990.

The Reds have won 31 of their past 32 league fixtures, only
dropping points in a 1-1 draw at Manchester United in October.

With 14 games left, Liverpool’s incredible run has given
historic overtones to their impending title coronation.

The European and World champions are now 41 games unbeaten
in the league — just eight away from the 49-match English top-flight record
set by Arsenal’s ‘Invincibles’ across 2003 and 2004.

Matching that Arsenal team’s achievement in going an entire
league season without defeat is within Liverpool’s reach, as is Manchester
City’s Premier League record of 100 points.

Liverpool’s latest success on a chilly night in east London
will be just a footnote when the full story of their likely title triumph is
written, but they still managed to record another small piece of history.

They have now beaten all 19 of the other teams in the league
at least once this season — the first time the club have achieved that feat in
the top-flight. 

Klopp attracted criticism for announcing he and his
first-team players won’t be present for the FA Cup fourth round replay against
Shrewsbury next week as it falls within the Premier League’s winter break.

Instead, Klopp will send Liverpool’s youth team to the
match, but at this rate they will win the title so early that his stars will
have plenty of time to put their feet up in the final weeks of the domestic

– Swaggering Liverpool –

Faced with West Ham’s massed defence and lacking the pace
and penetration usually provided by the injured Sadio Mane, Liverpool initially
monopolised possession without a cutting edge.

Salah and Jordan Henderson finally combined to open up West
Ham for the first time.

Andrew Robertson was the beneficiary and the left-back’s
clip over Lukasz Fabianski was trickling towards the goalline when Issa Diop
got back to clear.

It wasn’t vintage Liverpool but their pressure eventually
produced Salah’s opener from their first shot on target in the 35th minute.

Roberto Firmino deftly controlled Trent Alexander-Arnold’s
pass and flicked the ball into the six-yard box, where Divock Origi was bundled
over by Diop. 

Jonathan Moss awarded the penalty and, after a lengthy VAR
check for a possible handball in the build-up, Egypt forward Salah stepped up
to send Fabianski the wrong way for his 16th goal of the season.

Manuel Lanzini wasted a golden opportunity to equalise early
in the second half when the West Ham winger scuffed straight at Alisson Becker.

Firmino almost doubled Liverpool’s lead when he swivelled
onto Robertson’s cross and forced Fabianski to save.

Liverpool’s second goal punished David Moyes’ team in
ruthless style as they authored a swaggering counter-attack in the 52nd minute.

Breaking from a West Ham corner, Henderson found Salah and
he flicked a superb pass with the outside of his boot to Oxlade-Chamberlain,
who raced clear to slot a cool finish past Fabianski.

Liverpool were still surprisingly creaky at the back, but
Angelo Ogbonna headed over from close-range. 

Declan Rice’s effort was saved by Alisson, with
the rebound deflected onto the post by Alexander-Arnold, before Alisson denied
Rice with another fine stop.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here