Mohamed Salah loves opening day against new boys, and Norwich has already seen this act.
Salah scored and assisted goals from Roberto Firmino and Diogo Jota as Liverpool sullied Norwich City’s return to the Premier League with a 3-0 win at Carrow Road on Saturday.
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Salah scored three times in a 4-3 thriller against Leeds to start last season, and had a goal and an assist against these same Canaries in a 4-1 win to start the 2019-20 season.
This one contained less drama.
The Reds led 1-0 at the break and busted the game open when Firmino entered for Jota.
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3 4 things we learned from Norwich City – Liverpool
1. Nothing slow about Salah’s start: Mohamed Salah was ready to go on opening day (again), setting up Jota for the first goal of the game before showing terrific reaction on the other two Liverpool goals. First he squared a ball for Firmino to snap home after Sadio Mane’s blocked shot fell for him. Then Salah showed immaculate touch in settling a loose ball just inside the 18 and firing into the back of the goal.
2. Sargent debuts: American striker Josh Sargent subbed in for Teemu Pukki with 13 minutes left and the score already 3-0, days after securing a move to the Premier League from Werder Bremen. He had some solid moments in what was barely more than a cameo, skittering a shot wide of the far post on the edge of stoppage time. A promising start, relatively speaking.
3.Not in Liverpool’s class but Norwich should ignore the score line to some extent: Daniel Farke’s men had trouble producing the big chances and clearly the Canaries won’t be contending for European placement, but Norwich City had its fair share of possession and came close to scoring late albeit with the wrong men bidding to beat Alisson Becker (center backs Grant Hanley and Ben Gibson were denied in-tight by the Brazilian). Will the Canaries struggle this year? For sure, but this wasn’t the blowout even if it was comfortable for Liverpool.
4. Van Dijk assuages fears: Virgil van Dijk was very good in his return to the Premier League pitch, certainly putting to rest some of the doubts regarding his rebound from a long-term injury. He was good in the air and connected on 7-of-9 long passes.
Man of the Match: Salah
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