Match report as Liverpool welcomed fans back to Anfield with a 2-0 victory against Burnley; Goals either side of half time from Diogo Jota and Sadio Mane see off spirited Burnley; Reds stretch unbeaten league run to 12 games; Burnley start season with back-to-back defeats.
Liverpool welcomed fans back to Anfield by securing a second straight victory of the new Premier League campaign, but they were made to work for their 2-0 victory by a spirited Burnley.
Sean Dyche’s side were causing Liverpool, who handed youngster Harvey Elliott a first Premier League start, plenty of problems, but the hosts showed their clinical edge in front of goal as Diogo Jota (18) headed Kostas Tsimikas’ inch-perfect cross past Nick Pope to break the deadlock.
Liverpool, who saw a Mohamed Salah strike ruled out for offside by VAR towards the end of the first half, were given a warning early in the second half when Ashley Barnes’s strike was correctly ruled out by the offside flag, but it wasn’t long before Jurgen Klopp’s side took firm control of the game.
And the points were eventually made safe when Sadio Mane finished off a fine team move to continue their perfect start to the season and extend Liverpool’s unbeaten run in the Premier League to 12 matches.
For Burnley, despite a promising performance at times, they start the season with back-to-back defeats and have now lost five league games in a row for the first time ever, leaving Sean Dyche with plenty to think about even at this early stage of the season.
Liverpool did not have things all their own way in the early stages at Anfield as Burnley started brightly.
Trent Alexander-Arnold was forced into a goal-line block to keep out Dwight McNeil’s powerful low drive just before an offside flag cut short the move and Alisson was forced into action at his near post to keep out Chris Wood’s goal-bound header.
However, it was Liverpool who took the lead in the 18th minute as all Burnley’s hard work was undone by some poor defending.
ota was given the freedom of the penalty area by Ben Mee and James Tarkowski as he connected with Tsimikas’ cross to guide a header past Nick Pope.
It seemed like Liverpool might kick on and take the game away from Burnley, but they were denied a second by VAR as Salah strayed into an offside position as he latched onto Elliott’s pass before finishing past Pope.
Mane and Naby Keita saw efforts go off target as the hosts continued to search for a second goal, before a worrying moment for Alisson, who was beaten to the ball at the other end by Tarkowski, but the Burnley defender’s header bounced wide.
Burnley did manage to put the ball in the Liverpool net shortly after the break via Barnes’ finish, but again an assistant referee’s flag was correctly raised for offside against the Burnley forward.
However, Liverpool grew into the half and began to take control as Mane had an attempt comfortably saved by Pope and he was also unable to turn the ball in at the far post following Virgil van Dijk’s volley.
As Liverpool started to click through the gears, Salah saw his low strike kept out by a fine block from McNeil and Mane saw two efforts stopped by Pope.
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