Liverpool vs Crystal Palace: Sadio Mane, Mohamed Salah and Naby Keita all scored as the Reds battled long and hard for a 3-0 Premier League victory at Anfield on Saturday.
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Liverpool were lucky to not find themselves a goal (or two) down after a sleepy start in the game’s opening three minutes. Eventually, they settled in and played the game on their terms. The Reds sit atop the Premier League table with 13 points from their first five games, though none of the other four sides on 10 points have played this weekend.
Liverpool vs Crystal Palace final score, stats, results
Goals scored: Liverpool 3 (Mane 43′, Salah 78′, Keita 89′), Crystal Palace 0 (None)
Shots: Liverpool 25, Crystal Palace 12
Shots on target: Liverpool 10, Crystal Palace 2
Possession: Liverpool 61%, Crystal Palace 39%
3 things we learned, Liverpool vs Crystal Palace
1. Patience pays off in the end: Through 25 minutes (more than half) of the first half, Liverpool were out-shot 5-3 by Crystal Palace. It was at that point that Liverpool began to press higher up the field to win the ball back in more advantageous areas. As a result, the Reds out-shot Crystal Palace by a margin of 20-7 the rest of the game. Mane’s goal came as a result of the increased possession and goal threat as Crystal Palace drifted deeper and deeper into their own half.
2. Klopp rotates on first Champions League week: Jurgen Klopp made seven changes to the team that beat AC Milan 3-2 on Wednesday, including all four defenders, yet Liverpool still navigated their way to six points this week. Given the injuries his side suffered last season, Klopp will be even more delighted by the depth of quality in the cupboard.
3. Crystal Palace tough to play against, tougher to beat: Patrick Vieira has done well five games into his tenure in south London. The Eagles have five points from their first five games, in which they’ve beaten Tottenham, drawn West Ham and Brentford, and been beaten by Chelsea and Liverpool. Crystal Palace have already played half of the big-six sides this season, and they have three points to show for those efforts — positive signs of progression under the new manager.
Man of the Match: Mohamed Salah – Took quite some time to get his goal, but it wasn’t for a lack of trying from the Egyptian superstar. He was active, involved and constantly dangerous, as usual.
Liverpool vs Crystal Palace recap, highlights
Sadio Mane cleans up the rebound for 1-0 (goal video)
Six days after Salah reached 100 Premier League goals (98 for Liverpool), Mane joined the century club (79 for Liverpool) when he opened the scoring against Crystal Palace. Salah’s initial header was saved, but Vicente Guaita couldn’t hold the ball and Mane pounced on it ruthlessly.
The goal also set a somewhat obscure record: Mane has now scored in nine straight Premier League games against Crystal Palace, breaking Robin van Persie’s mark of eight straight games with a goal against Stoke City.
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Salah slams home Liverpool’s second goal (video)
Crystal Palace were threatening to equalize with increasing regularity, leaving Liverpool in a precarious position as the clock ticked away, so Salah made the final 10 minutes slightly less worrisome for the Anfield faithful.
Naby Keita volley gets Anfield on its feet (goal video above)
Life at Liverpool has been anything but easy for Keita, who has dealt with numerous injuries since his arrival in the summer of 2018. Moments like Saturday’s sensational volley will not only lift his spirits, but could be just the thing to build his confidence back.