Liverpool winger Sadio Mane celebrates his goal,(c) Liverpool Twitter

3 talking points from a slim Liverpool victory over Southampton

Sadio Mane and Thiago Alcantara scored the goals at Anfield as Liverpool kept their Champions League hopes alive with victory over Southampton.

Liverpool beat Southampton 2-0, and kept hopes of finishing in the top four alive after their success at Anfield on Saturday.

Sadio Mane struck in the first half to hand the home side the lead, just moments after Alisson denied Che Adams at point-blank range. The Brazilian goalkeeper took the man of the match award, showing his importance to Jurgen Klopp’s side once more with several fine interventions as they retained their lead into the dying embers of the game.

With a matter of seconds remaining, Thiago Alcantara struck a fine second from 20 yards to seal a much-needed home win and three points for the Reds. Here are the three talking points from a routing, yet necessary victory for the Reds.

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THIAGO STEPS UP WITH A CONVINCING PERFORMANCE

Opinion seems split on Thiago‘s time at Liverpool so far, and it was probably split similarly on this game alone until his well-taken goal. Though he’s not enjoyed the season many hoped he would after arriving from Bayern Munich, this has been mostly down to the woes of the team in general than the Spaniard individually. He seems to get blamed for many things which aren’t his fault, and good play is often ignored.

That won’t be the case once supporters can get back in the stands. The 30-year-old should become a favorite at Anfield if he’s able to stay fit and in the team. He may even be appreciated beyond Liverpool in grounds around the country, such is his natural ability to entertain and his flamboyant skills, even in between the main narratives of a game. Against Southampton, there was a pass with the shoulder, a pirouette in midfield, a blast on the half volley from distance, and a late goal, all of which would have had fans showing their appreciation. He finished the game with a pass success of 93 percent, while only Andy Robertson had more touches.