Liverpool took advantage of league leaders Man City dropping points yesterday by beating Crystal Palace 3-1 at Selhurst Park earlier today.
Jurgen Klopp’s side started impressively and found themselves ahead after just eight minutes, when Virgil van Dijk rose highest to bullet home a header from a Andy Robertson corner.
The Reds were completely dominant in the first-half and went two ahead through Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain in the 32nd minute. Robertson was once again the supplier, with the left-back’s delivery expertly taken down on the chest and fired home by England international Oxlade-Chamberlain.
It looked as if Liverpool would cruise to victory, but Crystal Palace looked dangerous when they did manage to get forward and would pull a goal back through summer signing Odsonne Edouard after 55 minutes. The young French striker tapping home into an empty net after Jean-Philippe Mateta unselfishly squared the ball.
Despite Liverpool looking the better side for large parts Palace created a host of chances and it would take a man of the match display from Reds ‘keeper Alisson to stop Patrick Vieira’s team from getting something from the game.
Liverpool would eventually seal the win at the death through a controversial penalty for a foul on Diogo Jota, that Brazilian midfielder Fabinho confidently stroked home into the bottom corner.
Liverpool’s win sees them move to within nine points of City at the top of the table with a game in hand and speaking afterwards, Red boss Klopp admitted his side had been made to work hard for what was a crucial win.
“Massive. It is obviously January which is a tricky period for us historically – well at least during my time! You play without three players in Africa and a few others so we had a small group to get through this but the boys did incredible,” Klopp told Sky Sports.
“It showed how insanely good we can be and how bad as well! For 35 minutes we were outstanding. We looked really sharp and ready to play in small spaces then two or three sloppy passes and the stadium is back, Palace is back and we did not start well in the second half.
”We had our moments but we did not control it any more. If you lose a little bit of focus it showed how tired we could be as Palace played a really good game. We opened the door for them and they ran through.”