Liverpool proved their title-credentials by dismantling West Ham United in their English Premier League-opener at Anfield on Sunday. Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mane and Daniel Sturridge were all on target as the Reds thrashed the Hammers 4-0.
The home side began the proceedings on a dominant note and deservedly took the lead in the 19th minute. Naby Keita, who made an impressive debut, carried the ball and passed it to Andrew Robertson who crossed low for Salah to tap in to an empty net. Prior to that, Fabianski had denied Salah thrice.
Mane then put the Reds firmly in command by scoring in the added time just before the break. James Milner volleyed back a Robertson cross into the middle before Mane found the back of the net to double Liverpool’s lead.
Jurgen Klopp’s men started the second half on the same note as Mane scored just eight minutes after the restart to put the game to the bed. Roberto Firmino was the architect of Liverpool’s third, cleverly feeding the ball through to Mane just inside the area to control and shoot low past Fabianski. The goal, however, was a but controversial as replays showed Mane was offside by a good distance.
With the result of the game almost sealed, Klopp did not hesitate in withdrawing all three of his forwards – Firmino, Mane and Salah – during the second half.
And the final substitution put the iciing on the cake as Sturrdige scored Liverpool’s fourth in the dying minutes.The England international, who was marking his return to Anfield after spending time on loan at West Brom, met Milner’s corner at the back post and found the back of the net to give Liverpool a flying start.