Liverpool suffered yet another blow in their quest for Champions League football after yet another home defeat this time to Chelsea.
Chelsea earned a crucial win over Liverpool to boost their top-four hopes and further compound the sense of deflation surrounding their opponents. The Blues were in control for much of the match at Anfield on Thursday as Thomas Tuchel’s blueprint began to take shape. Timo Werner provided a stern warning to the side who tried to buy him last summer when his goal was disallowed by the width of a shirt sleeve.
But Chelsea soon had their noses in front thanks to Mason Mount‘s goal right before half-time, and from there they never looked back. Liverpool pegged Chelsea back in the second half as they went in search of an equalizer but rarely troubled the Blues’ defense as they slumped to another defeat on home soil.
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THE STRANGE SUBSTIUTION OF MOHAMED SALAH
Jurgen Klopp will no doubt be pleased to have two of his key men back in action. Fabinho came straight back in to resume his deputizing duties in defense. He looked a little rusty, though having to forge a new partnership with a player you’ve never played with before didn’t help matters – particularly with a boisterous Werner sniffing around.
Diogo Jota‘s return is a huge bonus, as he was arguably Liverpool’s best player at the start of this season. What was perhaps more surprising was that Salah was subbed off just after the hour as the Portuguese forward came on in his place. Mohamed Salah reacted in typical Salah fashion, making clear his frustration with plenty of huffing and puffing while sitting in the stands. But he could have no complaints. That’s a luxury Klopp could ill-afford these past few months, though one he will probably consider more often, particularly given Salah’s lack of impact, while Sadio Mane‘s composure was non-existent.