Liverpool 4-1 West Ham United; Five things we learned

The Reds eased to an emphatic home victory over a disappointing Hammers side. Here are five things we learned.

Anfield is still an impossible away day for West Ham

 With one solitary victory since 1964, West Ham’s visits to Anfield have traditionally ended in defeat, with the odd draw thrown in for good measure.

Saturday’s game was yet again a trip too far for West Ham as they succumbed easily to yet another away defeat on Merseyside. Having lost 5-0 at Everton this season, nine goals conceded in the city of Liverpool this term is a wretched statistic.

For the Hammer’s manager, it is not much better. It is fifteen years since David Moyes first visited the venue as a manager and he is yet to win at Anfield. This was his 15th game at Liverpool’s home – and his eighth defeat.

 

West Ham’s offensive play was lacking a punch

With Manuel Lanzini back in the side, following a period out through injury, and with Marko Arnautovic in good form, West Ham’s traveling support expected more from their team going forward.

Instead, apart from a couple of shots from Arnautovic, one of which hit the crossbar, West Ham lacked urgency going forward and never looked likely to cause the home side too many problems.

The only positive note for West Ham was Michail Antonio’s second half strike which briefly brought the away side back into the game.

Mo Salah is on the way to becoming an Anfield great

Liverpool have already scored more than 100 goals this season and Egyptian international Mo Salah is possibly the main reason for this.

He has been directly involved in 31 Premier League goals this season (23 goals, eight assists), more than any other player. He has also scored 20 goals with his left foot in the Premier League this season, the most by a player in a single season in the competition’s history.

For those that remember his brief and unsuccessful spell at Chelsea, these statistics make for interesting reading. If he stays at Liverpool for a few more seasons and replicates these exploits, he may well be regarded along with the club’s many great strikers of the past.

Liverpool on course for a top-four finish

Back in October when Liverpool lost 4-1 to Tottenham Hotspur, a top-four Premier League finish looked like a remote scenario. However since then, their form has flourished and they are now third, just two points behind second-placed Manchester United, but 15 points behind runaway leaders Manchester City. Crucially, they are four points clear of fifth placed Chelsea.

With 10 matches remaining, Liverpool are on course for their highest league finish since 2013-14, and their trip to Old Trafford on 10 March will go a long way to deciding whether they can take second spot.

Judging by their recent goal-scoring exploits, second spot in the Premier League is a distinct possibility for Liverpool.

 

West Ham’s next game is now crucial

Even the most avid Hammers fan would not have expected too much from West Ham’s trip to Anfield on Saturday. Following the 4-1 defeat the focus is on next weekend’s trip to Swansea, a relegation battle which could go a long way in deciding both team’s Premier League fate.

Last season West Ham beat Swansea 4-1 away, with striker Andre Ayew getting on the Hammers scoresheet. The Ghanaian is now back in South Wales with Swansea and West Ham fans are hoping he does not come back to haunt them, having had a disappointing time at the London Stadium.

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