Liverpool extended their lead on the tip of the Premier League to 16 aspects with a sport in hand as they battled to a laborious-fought steal at Tottenham.
Jurgen Klopp’s men changed into the predominant personnel in Europe’s high-five leagues to steal 20 of their first 21 games as they withstood a second-half of fightback from Spurs to steal courtesy of Roberto Firmino’s first-half of aim.
The Brazil ahead grew to change into Spurs’ young debutant Japhet Tanganga then beat Paulo Gazzaniga with a candy left-foot strike to provide the company a deserved lead.
On the opposite hand Liverpool were then grateful to unhappy finishing from Jose Mourinho’s aspect – who were without the injured Harry Kane – in voice to myth one more victory on their seemingly relentless march to a fundamental title in 30 years.
Son Heung-Min and change Giovani lo Celso missed honest second-half of chances to provide Spurs some reward for a performance that improved because the game went on.
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Nonetheless Liverpool, their field reinforced further by Leicester Metropolis’s shock dwelling loss to Southampton, held on to magnify the sense of formality about the bolt region of this season’s Premier League trophy.
Liverpool no longer at most fluent – nonetheless steal every other time
Liverpool can also just no longer were at their handiest – there were even spells in the second half of as soon as they regarded jaded – nonetheless here’s a personnel on a seemingly unstoppable bustle to the Premier League title.
This changed into as soon as their 12th successive league steal and it’s a excellent feat to contain dropped handiest two league aspects from their first 21 games – one thing no various personnel in Europe’s main leagues has ever performed.
Or no longer it’s factual they were let off by Spurs’ missed chances nonetheless there might well perhaps be a sense that Liverpool’s dominance is having a psychological impact on their opponents so that as soon as uncommon opportunities advance alongside, they are being snatched at.
And even when no longer in top construct, Liverpool’s ahead line is so potent that there’s continuously a aim in them – as Firmino proved alongside with his trim 37th-minute sidestep and thumping construct.
Spurs will exclaim, with justification, they want to peaceable contain had a throw-in sooner than the target nonetheless Liverpool are now being propelled with rising momentum to total that prolonged wait to reclaim their perch on the summit of the English sport.
Spurs lack killer intuition
The root of Spurs’ downfall came in two clear aspects of their performance – albeit one did salvage higher because the game wore on.
Within the predominant half of, Spurs were a ways too passive and detrimental as they sat back, presumably ready for a possibility to strike on the counter attack.
The method changed into as soon as undone by Firmino’s aim, leaving Spurs without a choice nonetheless to be more definite in the second length.
It changed into as soon as then, without the marksmanship of prolonged-term destroy victim Kane, that they were so wasteful in front of aim – with each Son and Lo Celso missing when it regarded simpler to achieve.
Lo Celso’s miss, namely, left Mourinho overtly lamenting his aspect’s absence of a scientific edge as he collapsed dramatically to his knees after the Argentina midfielder did no longer hit the purpose from shut vary.
Spurs’ wasteful moments against Liverpool can also just smartly further persuade their supervisor he has to provide a snatch to his attacking options in this switch window because the fight for a high-four field intensifies.
Man of the match – Virgil van Dijk (Liverpool)
‘Right here is the right kind personnel on the earth’ – what they acknowledged
Tottenham boss Jose Mourinho, talking to BBC Sport: “Right here is football. Incessantly you salvage bigger than you deserve. Incessantly you salvage less. This changed into as soon as an occasion after we obtained nothing after we deserved one thing. Right here is the right kind personnel on the earth against a personnel in a elaborate second, with injuries, in a elaborate section of the season. The boys were improbable after we tried to change and construct issues.”
On a seemingly handball in the blueprint-up to the target: “I did no longer look at it. What I look at is 200% that the throw in for the starting up of the target changed into as soon as our throw. I am at a loss for phrases with VAR because of that.”
On finishing in the tip four: “It is a ways conceivable to discuss high four even as you birth the season on zero aspects. Nonetheless it completely is laborious to discuss it even as you birth at minus 12 (the series of aspects off the tip four Spurs were when he took over).”
Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp, talking to BBC Sport: “It changed into as soon as very laborious-fought because we did no longer shut the game down early. We must in any recognize times peaceable were one or 2-0 up already after we scored. While you’ve got gotten effective opponent look after Tottenham and you don’t shut the game they’re going to advance back. Allison makes things look at easy. It is no longer what we would contain wanted. It is a ways intense, you lose the ball and you are going by one among the right kind counter-attacking aspects. We had Robbo (Andy Robertson) free two or three times and he did no longer salvage a personnel-mate, so we did no longer support ourselves.”
On his aspect’s defensive myth: “We wanted Allison for that lately. We had a few dips defensively. Some games he has no longer had plenty to construct with us winning the ball high early. It is a ways appropriate nonetheless there’s no longer the kind of thing as a various likelihood to steal games than to defend smartly.”
On their myth birth to the season: “It does no longer feel one way or the opposite particular. We find out about it and it’s a ways particular nonetheless I will’t feel it. When any individual presents you a trophy it’s a ways executed nonetheless except then you’ve got gotten to fight. It is a ways handiest the starting up. We want to proceed because our contenders are so tough. Pep (Guardiola, Manchester Metropolis boss) will no longer quit. I will construct the identical. Up to now, so the truth is smartly wonderful.”
Liverpool’s myth 38-sport bustle – the stats
- Liverpool contain 61 aspects in the Premier League in 2019-20 – among the any aspect has ever registered after 21 games in a single season all over Europe’s mountainous five leagues (assuming three aspects for a steal).
- Liverpool contain restful 104 aspects all over their remaining 38 Premier League fits (W33 D5 L0) – a myth total by any personnel all over a 38-match spell in the competition’s historical previous, overtaking 102-point stretches by Man Metropolis (ending in 2018) and Chelsea (2005).
- Tottenham Hotspur contain conceded 20 targets in 13 fits in all competitions beneath Jose Mourinho; it took Mourinho’s Chelsea aspect 44 games sooner than letting of their 20th aim all over his first spell in England as a supervisor in the 2004-05 season.
- Right here is Liverpool’s joint-handiest scoring bustle from the starting up of a season in English high-flight historical previous, with the Reds furthermore scoring of their opening 21 games in 1933-34.
- Liverpool contain now gone 38 Premier League games without defeat; since their remaining league loss at Man Metropolis in January 2019, Tottenham contain misplaced 16 Premier League fits by comparison, alongside side three to the Reds.
- Tottenham contain misplaced back-to-back Premier League fits for the predominant time this season, having remaining performed so in Can also just 2019, whereas here’s the predominant time their supervisor Jose Mourinho has misplaced consecutive games in the competition since August 2018 as Manchester United boss.
- Liverpool contain kept six consecutive spruce sheets in the Premier League for the predominant time since December 2006 (seven).
- Roberto Firmino has scored five targets in his remaining six games for Liverpool in all competitions, as many as he had in his previous 30 appearances for the Reds sooner than this bustle.
Tottenham host Middlesbrough of their FA Cup third-round replay on Tuesday, 14 January (20: 05 GMT). They then walk to Watford in the Premier League on Saturday, 18 January (12: 30 GMT).
Liverpool welcome Manchester United to Anfield of their subsequent Premier League fixture on Sunday, 19 January (16: 30 GMT).