It was a four-star performance from Liverpool to with a four-goal margin of victory in their weekend hammering of Southampton.
The Reds got off to their now customary electric start, and within two minutes they had the ball in the net – Andy Robertson bursting clear down the left and providing the perfect cross for Diogo Jota to prod home. If the Saints were in any doubt as to the size of the task they faced, they need not wonder anymore.
Credit to Southampton, they continued to press and harry the Reds, but gaping chasms continued to open up between their defence and midfield, and it was only a matter of time before Liverpool would make it count.
It was down the left that they were having the most joy, with former Southampton man Sadio Mane drifting inside and almost scoring twice, nodding one chance wide and also putting the ball in the net from an offside position.
Jordan Henderson and Mo Salah combined in the 32nd minute, and this time there would be no offside flag to save the Saints as the ball found its way to Jota, who made no mistake.
Just five minutes later, Thiago would etch his name onto the score sheet for a second week running with another strike from distance, and with a 3-0 lead at half time many Reds fans were dreaming of a cricket score.
Southampton tried to batten down the hatches, but Liverpool continued to find a way through with ease and Virgil van Dijk added a fourth early in the second period.
Jota should have completed his hat-trick thereafter, and other chances came and went as Liverpool missed out on the chance to give their goal difference column a further boost.
Never mind. This was another strong Reds showing, and they look in the perfect place to further heap misery on neighbours Everton on Wednesday.
Liverpool Team News
Jurgen Klopp has reported that, aside from the ongoing issues, Liverpool’s players came through the Southampton game with a clean bill of health.
It means that Bobby Firmino remains sidelined with his thigh injury for a couple more weeks, while Naby Keita and Joe Gomez are set to return to training – the Everton game could come too soon, however.
Curtis Jones continues his recuperation from a bizarre eye injury, but otherwise it’s all systems go for Klopp as he seeks to gain the local bragging rights for Reds fans.
You suspect he’d like to field the same eleven as that against the Saints, but you do wonder if the likes of Henderson and Thiago have so many consecutive minutes in the bank – that said, they were both subbed off around the hour mark at the weekend.
There’s a chance that Joel Matip could be restored to the starting eleven at the expense of Ibrahima Konate, but otherwise it could be a case of as you were for the Reds.
These are wretched times for Everton under Rafa Benitez.
They haven’t won a Premier League game since September, relinquishing their bright start with a run of five defeats from their last six games – shipping 12 goals along the way.
To make matters worse, they haven’t scored for more than 270 minutes of football – and with injuries to Dominic Calvert-Lewin and midfield playmaker Andre Gomes, there doesn’t seem to be a solution on the horizon.
They were perhaps unlucky against Brentford on Sunday, but when you are failing to match promoted sides you know something is wrong – the absence of Yerry Mina and Mason Holgate means the Toffees are compromised at both ends of the pitch, and that will hardly aid them against Liverpool.
Everton vs Liverpool Betting Tips
A vociferous Goodison Park will do their best to exact more form the Everton players, but that atmosphere can soon turn sour for those low on confidence and you sense the knives will be out for Rafa on Wednesday.
Klopp’s Liverpool absolutely won’t give an inch, and as we saw against Southampton there’s no letting up when they romp clear – they want to score as many goals as they possibly can.
The manager will let them off the leash against the Toffees, and while Liverpool to Win to Nil is appetising value at 7/5, we can perhaps still do better.
To that end, we’re backing Liverpool to score Over 2.5 Goals at 11/8 against the beleaguered blue half of Merseyside.