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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.

Watch Live: Liverpool vs. Manchester City

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Liverpool is unbeaten in 17 games, while Manchester City hasn’t lost this Premier League season.

Will anything give on Sunday at Anfield? (Watch live at 11 a.m. ET on NBCSN and online via NBCSports.com)

WATCH LIVE, ONLINE, HERE | TACTICAL CAM

The Reds won’t have new signing Virgil Van Dijk due to a “tight hamstring,” putting Dejan Lovren in the center of the back line with Joel Matip.

Jurgen Klopp has also chosen Loris Karius over Simon Mignolet between the sticks.

LINEUPS

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

Man City: Ederson, Walker, Stones, Otamendi, Delph, Fernandinho (c), De Bruyne, Gundogan, Sane, Sterling, Aguero. Subs: Bravo, Zinchenko, Danilo, Mangala, D Silva, Bernardo, Diaz

Liverpool mashes Bournemouth in 4-0 win

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  • Coutinho, Salah score beauties (video)
  • Cherries winless in six
  • Reds unbeaten in nine
  • Robertson key on left side

Liverpool ran a red-hot first half to an easy 4-0 win over Bournemouth at the Vitality Stadium on Sunday.

Mohamed Salah and Philippe Coutinho scored highlight reel goals, with Dejan Lovren and Roberto Firmino pitching in flying headers, as the Reds moved into the Top Four with 34 points.

Bournemouth sits 16th, a point ahead of the relegation zone, and witnessed a match much different than last season’s 4-3 win over Liverpool at the same venue.

[ MORE: Watch full PL match replays ]

Joe Gomez curled a shot wide of the goal in the fourth minute. A Nathan Ake foul six minutes later gave Liverpool a free kick just outside the 18, and Philippe Coutinho struck a sweet effort off the inside of the post… and out.

Coutinho nearly put a chance home moments later, so it was not surprise when he scored the match’s first goal. A mazy dribbled past two Cherries ended with a shot across his body and inside the near post. Wonderful stuff. 1-0.

Lovren had 2-0 within six minutes, hitting the deck with a diving header goal after Roberto Firmino saved a corner kick on the line at the back post.

Jermain Defoe timed his run well for a 1v1 with Simon Mignolet, but his shot caromed off the far post.

It would’ve been 3-0 were it not for an outstanding reaction save from Asmir Begovic as Mohamed Salah attempted to cap off a terrific team play in the 43rd minute.

[ MORE: Latest Premier League standings ]

[ MORE: Full lineups, stats, box score ]

Salah got his goal in stunning fashion, bodying off a defender before dribbling past two more to finish with an off-balance belt past Begovic.

Substitute Ryan Fraser had a chance to pull one back in the 56th minute, but rang it wide of the near post.

The Reds raised their advantage to four on another Robertson started move, with Firmino heading a Coutinho cross beyond Begovic.

WATCH: Liverpool battering Bournemouth with highlight reel half

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Philippe Coutinho is capable of elite magic, and he conjured up some fantasy on Sunday at the Vitality Stadium.

[ MORE: Watch via NBCSports.com ]

Liverpool and Bournemouth were scoreless when the Brazilian dribbled past Simon Francis and Lewis Cook on a mazy run, taking Andrew Robertson‘s square pass and dancing through daylight.

If only there were a body cam on Adam Smith, who was chasing Coutinho the whole time!

Dejan Lovren — does this require we say “of all people?” — then scored a diving header after Roberto Firmino saved a wayward corner kick.

And Mohamed Salah, what else can you say about the 20-goal scorer (in all competitions)?

Salah would get his goal in stunning fashion, bodying off a defender before dribbling past two more to finish with an off-balance belt past Begovic.

Liverpool 1-1 Everton: An absolute heist

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  • Reds boast 79 percent possession
  • Liverpool holds 22-3 shot advantage
  • Salah stays hot with goal
  • Rooney converts PK equalizer

Wayne Rooney‘s was Everton’s hero in his first Merseyside Derby in a decade, as a shocking turn of events saw the dominated Toffees claim a 1-1 draw with Liverpool at Anfield on Sunday.

Mohamed Salah scored his 19th Liverpool goal in the first half, and Everton couldn’t find a chance for most of the match.

The draw moves Liverpool back into fourth with 30 points, while Everton moves 10th with 19.

Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp rested Philippe Coutinho and Roberto Firmino to start the match.

[ MORE: Watch full PL match replays ]

The tackles and energy were rampant under cartoonish large snowflakes as Liverpool controlled the ball but met blue resistance at the back.

Yet how long could Everton be expected to hold out as the Reds passed the ball around the outside of the 18?

About 42 minutes and change. Mohamed Salah cut into the left of the box and curled another pretty ball — these may need to be trademarked soon — beyond a flying Jordan Pickford and inside the far post.

Everton didn’t have any answers for the Reds’ onslaught, though the goals would not continue for some time at Anfield.

Would a rare Everton set piece in the 73rd minute provide a shock equalizer to punish Liverpool for a lack of finish? Nope: A corner kick was punched away by Simon Mignolet.

The fortunes did change, though, when Dejan Lovren‘s shove of Dominic Calvert-Lewin was deemed enough for an Everton penalty by referee Craig Pawson.

Rooney would not miss, fittingly providing a shocking equalizer in his first Merseyside Derby since arriving home rom Manchester United.

Pickford made a fine save late as subs Coutinho and Firmino attempted to find a winner.

[ MORE: Latest Premier League standings ]

[ MORE: Full lineups, stats, box score ]