8th December – A coast on the coast as Reds remain eight points clear


A rotated Liverpool side thrashed Bournemouth 3-0 in a comparatively easy victory on the south coast.

After making a host of changes for the Derby match in midweek, Jurgen Klopp did so again with Naby Keita, Mo Salah, Joe Gomez, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Roberto Firmino all starting for the German.

And it was one of those changes, Salah, who’s left-footed effort was caught mid-air by Bournemouth’s young stopper Aaron Ramsdale.

James Milner consequently fired inches wide after pinball inside the Cherries box, with ex-Red Dominic Solanke very nearly scoring his first Bournemouth goal before a Dejan Lovren block.

Eddie Howe’s side’s game plan had been executed somewhat perfectly, until the half-hour mark when Dutch international Nathan Ake pulled up to add to Bournemouth’s ever increasing injury list. He would be joined on the side-lines by central defensive counterpart Dejan Lovren later on in the half.

It wasn’t long thereafter that Liverpool took advantage of their lack of concentration. A GPS inspired ping from Jordan Henderson found Oxlade-Chamberlain, with the former Arsenal man slotting home his fifth of the season.

Liverpool doubled their lead minutes later after a miraculous back-heel assist from Salah, allowing Naby Keita to slice home past Ramsdale.

After half-time Keita would return the favour.

A sublime pass from the Guinean, much akin to Sadio Mane’s to Xherdan Shaqiri in the Merseyside derby, allowed the Egyptian to cut into the bottom-right corner. 3-0, and the game killed.

Bournemouth never really got going, and their soak-up plan was ruined with the injury of Ake leaving the inexperienced Jack Simpson hapless against the league leaders.

With the win Liverpool went 14 points clear of Manchester City after their surprise defeat to a resilient Manchester United, and now are eight clear of Brendan Rodgers’ Leicester after their 4-1 win at Villa Park.

Eddie Howe:

“I don’t like to use injuries as an excuse, but there comes a time when you have to look at the situation and the teams we are playing. We lost another two players today. It is what it is.

“The mentality of the group is strong but damaged in confidence. We can always do better. We can always question ourselves and say we could have done better today, but the quality of the opposition was very strong.”

Jurgen Klopp:

“”It was a professional performance – controlled, scoring wonderful goals. We didn’t want to make it exciting again, so we wanted to control Bournemouth.

“The most used word in the dressing room at the moment is ‘clean sheet ‘…finally!”

Stonadge’s Man of the Match – Jordan Henderson

The Liverpool captain dictated the game from start to finish.

His passing range is rivalling the very best in the division at the moment, with his assist for Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain the stuff of perfection.

Having been much maligned for a very long time in and amongst Liverpool supporters for his sideways passing and lack of forward drive – but in his ninth season at Anfield it seems as if he has finally won everyone over.

Bournemouth (4-4-2): Ramsdale; Francis, Mepham, Ake (Simpson 35), Rico; Danjuma, Lerma, Billing (Cook 58), Fraser; Wilson (Gosling 64), Solanke

Unused substitutes: Boruc, Surman, Ibe, Stacey

Liverpool (4-3-3): Alisson; Gomez, Lovren (Alexander-Arnold 40), Van Dijk, Robertson (Jones 76); Henderson, Milner, Keita; Oxlade-Chamberlain (Shaqiri 87), Salah, Firmino

Unused substitutes: Adrian, Mane, Origi, Elliott


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Sports Journalism student, streamer at LFC Transfer Room, Anfield Agenda. Liverpool fan with a particular interest in Welsh, Youth, and African football.

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