Liverpool reclaimed high spot within the Premier League desk after Manchester City’s win earlier within the day by defeating Burnley 3-1 in entrance of a brand new league attendance file at Anfield of 59,896 supporters.
Liverpoll supervisor Jurgen Klopp was booked for his protests after Jota was denied a first-half penalty, and his temper may have worsened when Dara O’Shea headed the primary Premier League aim of his profession to ship the groups in stage at 1-1.
Alexander-Arnold was surprisingly changed by Harvey Elliott at half-time, with Curtis Jones taking part in as an emergency right-back, and it was Elliott’s deflected cross that Luis Diaz met to place Liverpool 2-1 up on 52 minutes. Klopp’s aspect gave up possibilities for Burnley to equalise however then made the sport secure on 79 minutes when Elliott arrange Darwin Nunez for a fourth headed aim of the afternoon.
The Athletic’s Phil Buckingham breaks down the sport’s foremost speaking factors.
How nicely has Jota coated Salah’s absence?
Somebody needed to step up within the extended absence of Mohamed Salah, whose final look was on New 12 months’s Day, and nobody has been simpler in Liverpool’s assault than Diogo Jota. It’s 5 targets in six appearances for the Portugal worldwide, and his newest jolted a flat staff efficiency to life.
Jota’s close-range header owed a lot to the misjudgement of goalkeeper James Trafford, who was caught underneath the flight of the ball, however these instincts continued to hold worth on a day he was ultimately joined on the scoresheet by Diaz and Nunez.
Jota’s kind since getting back from his personal damage absence in late December has been wonderful. It’s six targets and three assists since that Boxing Day comeback, a run that places him heading in the right direction for his most efficient scoring season in Liverpool colors. A earlier finest was 21 targets throughout all competitions in 2021-22. Membership icon Jamie Carragher’s declare that Jota was among Liverpool’s best finishers of the Premier League era is not without foundation.
Salah will at all times be welcomed again as soon as he’s injury-free however, with Nunez and Diaz additionally contributing, it’s 22 targets for Liverpool of their eight league and cup video games since he final performed for them.
Why was Jones taking part in right-back?
Ten days after debating whether or not Conor Bradley or Alexander-Arnold had the strongest claims for a run at right-back, Klopp was compelled to show to Jones to unravel an unexpected downside.
Bradley was nonetheless unavailable following the dying of his father, Joe, final week and half-time right here introduced an surprising change as Alexander-Arnold was withdrawn after struggling discomfort in the identical knee that had saved him out in January.
Klopp opted to maneuver Jones out of his beginning place in midfield, deploying the academy graduate in the identical position he was requested to play within the Carabao Cup win over Leicester City right here in September. Jones’ show that evening was referred to as “super-smart” by Klopp.
Alexander-Arnold’s behavior of stepping out of defence and into midfield made Jones a helpful candidate as a stand-in and far of the second half was spent supporting assaults.
Liverpool’s frailties after half-time weren’t all the way down to Jones but with Jarell Quansah beginning solely his fourth Premier League recreation, that proper aspect of the again line was actually trying patched up and inexperienced.
How large was Elliott’s impression?
This season is popping out to be a take a look at of Elliott’s endurance. Solely three of his 19 Premier League appearances earlier than immediately had been begins however his newest likelihood off the bench, launched as a half-time substitute, couldn’t be faulted.
Twice, Elliott discovered house within the right-hand channel and twice he produced exact crosses into the field that helped Liverpool lastly see off the spirited menace of Burnley. The primary cross was intelligent, low right into a harmful space for Diaz to reach and head previous Trafford at knee peak. The second was inswinging and extra aerial, permitting Nunez to arch his neck and look the ball into the highest nook.
Liverpool had been wobbling earlier than these two second-half targets however the creativity of Elliott was key to Klopp’s aspect making it 5 residence wins out of 5 this calendar 12 months.
There can be no scarcity of alternatives for Elliott to play his half within the ultimate 4 months of the season. For all he may wrestle to persuade he warrants a spot in Klopp’s strongest XI, their battle for trophies on 4 fronts wants his intelligence and aptitude.
Days comparable to these, when lesser opponents threaten to make life awkward, underline simply that.
What did Klopp say?
On Alexander-Arnold: “It was clear it was a extremely tough afternoon. The boys confirmed precisely what we would have liked. In the beginning of the sport we have been in a little bit of a rush. They’d counter assaults and that doesn’t really feel nice. It was clearly an issue at half-time that we needed to take Trent off.
“That was a double downside in order for you; we needed to take Trent off and we didn’t have a right-back obtainable so we instructed Curtis what he needed to do. We modified formation as a result of we needed to make it so simple as attainable for him. He did exceptionally nicely. Harvey got here on and did very nicely.
“Burnley nonetheless had their moments however as soon as we scored the third one we might’ve scored extra. It was a extremely good consequence apart from the Trent state of affairs.”
To Sky Sports activities he added: “(It’s the) similar space within the knee. Nothing actually unhealthy however he felt it once more and we’ve to see. We are going to assess it. We have been made conscious of it within the recreation so thought ‘what can we do’ after which Trent mentioned ‘it’s superb’. Nevertheless it’s not as he feels it, so we needed to be cautious and take him off.”
What subsequent for Liverpool?
Saturday, February 17: Brentford (A), Premier League, 12.30pm GMT, 7.30am ET
Liverpool go for his or her first league win away to Brentford since… March 1938! Their two journeys there because the west Londoners returned to the highest flight within the 2021-22 season have been a 3-3 draw after which a 3-1 loss in January final 12 months. The excellent news is Liverpool have gained the previous two conferences, each at Anfield, by a mixed rating of 4 targets to nil.
(Prime photograph: John Powell/Liverpool FC by way of Getty Pictures)