Three things we learned from West Ham – Liverpool

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West Ham United – Liverpool: Mohamed Salah ended a dry run for goals and increased his Premier League-leading total to 15 in Liverpool’s 3-1 win over West Ham United at London Stadium on Sunday.

Salah has 21 goals in all competitions this season including 15 in 20 league appearances. It’s his fourth PL match with multiple goals this season.

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Georginio Wijnaldum also scored for Liverpool. The reigning PL champions move third with the win, four points off leaders Man City who’ve played one fewer match.

West Ham is fifth with 35 points but three teams within three points of the Irons have played two fewer matches. Craig Dawson claimed an 86th-minute goal off a corner kick for the Irons’ goal.

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Three things we learned from West Ham United – Liverpool

1. Salah puts on a show: If there’s a star player dealing with worse luck in front of goal than Mohamed Salah this season, send him our regards. His first goal in six games was a beauty and a relief coming on the heels of myriad just-misses and phenomenal saves. Creating a yard of space in a congested box, Salah pummeled a curling ball into the side netting and Lukasz Fabianski could only tip his hat.

The 28-year-old has 20 goals in all competitions this season, a mark he’s beaten in all four seasons at Liverpool (44, 27, and 23 before this). And the first and second touches on his second goal were, frankly, ethereal.

Power. Pace. Touch. Technique. All of the above.

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2. Irons lay another egg versus big boys: Take away Declan Rice’s performance and an errant Michail Antonio chance and the entirety of West Ham’s day could be summed up as ho-hum. West Ham’s six-match unbeaten and four-match winning streaks are done, and David Moyes is going to contend with what Leicester City has been dealing with since last season. It’s hard to beat the traditional powers and West Ham has given three points to Arsenal, Manchester United, and Chelsea, one to Spurs, one to Man City, and six to Liverpool. There’s zero shame in any of that for an up-and-coming program, but the data will bring a team back to Earth. With Aston Villa ahead, the Irons must be careful not to let a slip-up turn into a skid.

3. Count out Liverpool at your own peril (and what will happen Monday?): The Reds aren’t at their best but, as we’ve pointed out before, there isn’t a ton different between this Liverpool and the 2019-20 one that one the league… and this group is absent some big, big names. Sadio Mane missed out with a minor muscle injury and couldn’t build on his huge day versus Spurs. If Jurgen Klopp can land a fairly-reliable center back before the close of transfer deadline day on Monday, look out. If the Reds don’t add, they’ll next face Brighton, Man City, Leicester City, RB Leipzig, and Everton over 18 days. That’s a tall ask for a beleaguered corp of center backs.

Man of the Match: Mohamed Salah


West Ham United – Liverpool recap

Divock Origi missed with a wild effort in the sixth minute but had few options in the box.

West Ham had a good spell after the 20th minute, with Liverpool forced into a number of blocks and tackles in its own third.

Thiago hit a silly pass from the right for a sliding Origi but it was a big ask for the forward to maneuver the ball anywhere but wide of the near post.

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Origi was again busy in the second half, driving the left side and laying the ball into the path of Salah. The Egyptian’s shot was blocked by Aaron Cresswell.

Origi was into the box moments later, tearing into a right-footed effort that smashed into the outside of the goal. Craig Dawson also blocked a Xherdan Shaqiri effort.

Michail Antonio didn’t miss by much when Dawson won the ball deep in his own end to key a rush into Liverpool’s box.

Salah scored a fantastic goal in the 57th minute, taking a feed from sub Curtis Jones. He created a yard of space to the left of Aaron Cresswell and curled a vicious shot into the side netting.

Jordan Henderson will be sore tomorrow, taking a hard low tackle from Declan Rice early in the second half and a kick to the head from Tomas Soucek after the hour mark.

Salah’s second came off a long Shaqiri pass, the Egyptian casually two-touching past Fabianski off lethal counter attack.

Liverpool closed the book in oh-so-pretty fashion, Firmino working a sensational 1-2 with Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain that included a backheel flick en route to Wijnaldum’s finish.