Sadio Mane

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Porto 0-5 Liverpool: Mane leads rout

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Sadio Mane scored a hat trick as Liverpool buried Porto 5-0 in the first leg of their UEFA Champions League Round of 16 tie at the Estadio do Dragao on Wednesday.

Roberto Firmino and Mohamed Salah also scored (of course) as the Reds took a page from Man City’s book in scooping up four away goals from the first leg.

The second leg hits Anfield on March 6.

[ MORE: Full lineups, stats, box score ]

Porto had the first two chances of the match, the higher profile opportunity coming when Otavio saw his shot blocked by Dejan Lovren.

Mane’s goal came on the first of a few regrettable moments for goalkeeper Jose Sa, who lost track of a Georginio Wijnaldum blocked attempt as it wriggled under him. The play started when Sa’s thrown clearance was distributed right to the Reds.

Liverpool made it 2-0 on a clever finish from Salah after James Milner cranked a shot off the woodwork.

Sa did not enjoy the third goal, either, parrying a Firmino shot to Mane for the brace.

Firmino added Liverpool’s fourth in the 70th minute, and Mane completed his hat trick in the 85th minute.

Southampton 0-2 Liverpool: Salah, Firmino thrill

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  • Reds go third
  • Salah, Firmino each w/ goal, assist
  • Saints sink 18th

Roberto Firmino and Mohamed Salah assisted on each other’s goals as Liverpool beat Southampton 2-0 at St. Mary’s on Sunday.

The Reds are two points behind Manchester United for second in the Premier League, while Saints dip into the drop zone with 26 points.

[ MORE: Watch full PL match replays ]

Liverpool was ahead after six minutes, with Mohamed Salah receiving the luxury of a wide open Sadio Mane and Firmino. He chose the latter, and the latter chose to finish beyond the reach of Alex McCarthy. 1-0, Reds.

Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain had a shot deflected toward a diving McCarthy moments later.

Saints were on the verge of equalizing when Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg trapped a diagonal ball in the 18, but Loris Karius came charging to make a fine save.

James Ward-Prowse swept a cross to the penalty spot, where Guido Carrillo forced a save out of Karius with a header. Moments later, Dusan Tadic sent one to Ward-Prowse, whose header was palmed out for a corner by Karius.

Saints were on the front foot for the remainder of the half, that is excepting Liverpool’s crucial second goal. Salah and Firmino worked a 1-2 which included a back heel from the Brazilian. 2-0, 42′.

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[ MORE: Full lineups, stats, box score ]

Ward-Prowse hit a hard free kick to the front post, and Hoedt couldn’t quite turn it past Karius as the match remained 2-0 in the 60th minute.

Salah collected a Firmino rebound off a Mane-inspired combination, but saw a rare miss hit the outside of the side netting.

Substitute Adam Lallana nearly found the side panel against his old team, but shot wide of the far post.

WATCH LIVE: Southampton vs. Liverpool

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Three ex-Saints start for Liverpool as Virgil Van Dijk makes his much-anticipated return to St. Mary’s on Sunday (Watch live at 11:30 a.m. ET on NBCSN and online via NBCSports.com).

WATCH LIVE, ONLINE, HERE

Van Dijk is joined by Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Sadio Mane, with Dejan Lovren and Adam Lallana on the bench to complete a quintet of former Southampton players for the visitors.

Southampton starts the steely-midfield of Oriol Romeu and Mario Lemina.

LINEUPS

Southampton: McCarthy, Cédric, Stephens, Hoedt, Bertrand (c), Romeu, Lemina, Højbjerg, Ward-Prowse, Tadić, Carrillo. Subs: Forster, Yoshida, Davis, Boufal, Redmond, Long, Gabbiadini.

Liverpool: Karius, Alexander-Arnold, Matip, Van Dijk, Robertson, Can, Wijnaldum, Mane, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Salah, Firmino. Subs: Mignolet, Lovren, Milner, Moreno, Lallana, Ings, Solanke.

Lovren bets he’ll get more boos than Van Dijk

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Sunday’s Premier League tilt between Liverpool and Southampton at St. Mary’s is bound to be fueled by vitriol (Watch live at 11:30 a.m. ET on NBCSN and online via NBCSports.com).

[ MORE: Huddersfield buries Bournemouth ]

A bevy of ex-Saints are returning to their former home, including this season’s wantaway Virgil Van Dijk.

And while he’s going to be booed with vigor, Dejan Lovren has made the bizarre claim that he’ll hear more of the catcalls.

From The Liverpool Echo:

“I’m still number one! Maybe Virgil is behind me? Let’s see what will happen. Let’s see between me and Virgil who will have the higher decibels [of boos].

“I had a great time at Southampton and will always be thankful for that. I never had any feelings of hate towards the Southampton fans – they helped me and of course, they made some good business.”

We’ll go ahead and wager there’s no chance Lovren is booed more than Van Dijk. In fact, Sadio Mane may be higher up the Reds’ ex-Saints booing order.

Nathaniel Clyne and Adam Lallana are probably safe.

Huddersfield Town 0-3 Liverpool: Reds roll through West Yorkshire

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  • Reds onto 50 points
  • Tied with third-place Chelsea
  • Salah scores 19th of season

Emre Can, Roberto Firmino, and Mohamed Salah scored as Liverpool dominated Huddersfield Town 3-0 at the John Smith’s Stadium on Tuesday.

The Reds are now level with Chelsea on 50 points before the Blues take the pitch on Wednesday.

Town is just a point ahead of the drop zone with 24 points. Four Premier League clubs from 15th to 18th have 23 points.

Salah, as noted on the broadcast, now has as many goals this season as the entire Huddersfield Town squad.

[ MORE: Watch full PL match replays ]

Liverpool had little trouble bouncing back from its brutal loss to Swansea City, though Huddersfield Town found moments of threat against the Virgil Van Dijk-less Reds.

The opener from Can’s boot was powerful, ripped through the 18 with venom and inside the near post.

And the Reds made it a two-goal lead when Firmino darted along the end line to fire home from an extreme angle.

Some blowouts are on the scoreboard, while others are not: Sadio Mane and James Milner were both denied would-be goals by Jonas Lossl as it stayed 2-0 beyond the hour mark.

Mane made a perfect run to give Can a shot at an assist, but the snakebit Senegalese sensation headed wide of the frame.

Kevin Friend denied Huddersfield Town shouts for a penalty when Steve Mounie was dropped after a tugging match with Andy Robertson in the 72nd minute.

Liverpool did get a penalty when Can was bundled over in the 77th minute. Salah didn’t miss his shot.

[ MORE: Latest Premier League standings ]

[ MORE: Full lineups, stats, box score ]