Liverpool defeat Man Utd in Anfield as they go top of the Premier League

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Liverpool defeat Man Utd in Anfield as they go top of the Premier League
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Liverpool thrash Man Utd to go two points clear of Man City at top of the Premier League whilst Manchester United were reminded just how far from the summit they are as they were well beaten at Anfield.

Incredibly, the Red Devils are still in the hunt for the top four, although their reverse will have dented their hopes. Luis Diaz scored the first of Liverpool’s four within five minutes as the Reds cut through their rivals, something they made a habit of doing.

The Reds were as brilliant as United were poor. The gap between the two sides has rarely been larger in the Premier League era with Erik ten Hag set to have quite the task. Mo Salah got back amongst the goals as he cooly converted a brilliant Sadio Mane pass, with the Senegalese star also scoring.

“This Man Utd team are a waste of space,” claimed Gary Neville on commentary. By half-time the visitors had failed to have a shot on target and had just 24 per cent of possession with Ralf Rangnick sending on Jadon Sancho as he sought a response.

Liverpool, like they did at Old Trafford, eased off in the second-half, which in many ways spared United’s blushes, although the visitors did show some spirit as they began to test the Reds defence, whilst it didn’t change the outcome with Salah adding a second in the latter stages.

Eyes will now be on Manchester City as they attempt to respond and reclaim top spot in 24 hours time. Here are five talking points from Anfield.

Mo Salah was back amongst the goals as Liverpool went top

Mo Salah was back amongst the goals as Liverpool went top

The battering at Old Trafford came at a point in the season where alarm bells were ringing, this defeat was, in many ways, worse.

The gulf between the two sides has continued to grow since their game earlier this season and United’s flaws were again exposed. Liverpool’s relentlessness ” Manchester United are going under here,” said Neville, He also claimed “they don’t have a set of values or principles to fall back on. There’s no unit or collective at all.

United defeats of this manner often lead to the same narrative. The amount of money spent for a lack of return on their investment, a culture within the club that doesn’t lend itself to winning nowadays and a feeling of where do we go from here. Similar topics were, unsurprisingly, discussed after the 5-0 in October.

Luis Diaz set Liverpool on their way

Luis Diaz set Liverpool on their way

Liverpool’s smart intricate play on the right eventually saw a forward pass that had Trent Alexander-Arnold and Salah tearing after it. The Egyptian was first to it and laid on a pass for Diaz, who was bearing down on goal and could hardly miss.

United’s defence was cut apart, with their backline in anything but a line as their center-halves and full-backs sat yards apart. Liverpool have long turned defence in attack in seconds whilst the Red Devils shipping goals is anything but new and sums up where both sides are at.

Man Utd failed to mount a challenge at Anfield

Man Utd failed to mount a challenge at Anfield

Anfield joins Cristiano

How often do United fans and the Liverpool faithful come together. The answer, is not very often, if ever. But they did so at Anfield as 50,000 Merseysiders applauded one of United’s favourite sons.

The Red Devils were without their No 7, Cristiano Ronaldo, following the tragic passing of his newborn baby boy. The player put out a statement on social media to deliver the news and was absent for the trip to Liverpool. Seven minutes in though and the stadium was upstanding in joint applause in a show of support for the five-time Ballon d’Or winner.

Pogba’s United farewell?

We may well have seen Pogba play his final minutes in a United shirt and his departure, in an underperforming outfit, is somewhat reflective of his second coming at Old Trafford.

The Frenchman limped off within 10 minutes with what looked to be a muscle injury. There is no diagnosis but it could well keep the midfielder out for several weeks and then he will be free to leave United for nothing. Pogba’s contract has been allowed to wind down and a parting of ways this summer seems likely.

The World Cup winner cost the club a record £89m almost six years ago but his career in Manchester has resulted in just three trophies, the last of which came in 2017. His future has often been played out in public and the United faithful have never consistently seen the best of Pogba.

Paul Pogba was taken off within ten minutes

Paul Pogba was taken off within ten minutes

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