Liverpool too strong for new-look Hammers

Mae Harvey
August 13, 2018

That's great to see for Liverpool fans, whose last real memory of him was coming off injured in the Champions League final. "But now everywhere shows it - you just have to tell them you want to watch Salah play". Who else but the 20171/8 Premier League Golden Boot victor to get them on their way?

The Egypt forward scored 44 times in his first season at Liverpool and took only 19 minutes to get off the mark at Anfield.

The supporting cast helped admittedly, with new recruit Naby Keita taking on a starring role as his weighted pass to Andy Robertson teed up Salah for his 45th goal in 53 appearances.

A notable thread from this weekend's games was how many of those who appeared in the latter stages of the World Cup not only played, but excelled. Fabianski was by far the busier 'keeper with Alisson making just one comfortable save and impressing far more with his feet to launch a series of Liverpool attacks. A goal from Mohamed Salah, Daniel Sturridge, and a brace from Sadio Mane saw Jurgen Klopp's side take all three points against Manuel Pellegrini's men with a 4-0 win.

Although their goals owed plenty to the Hammers' terrible defending - and, in the case of Mane's second, an extraordinarily poor offside call - they looked slick, compact and risky from the first minute to the last.

Soon after debutant Riyad Mahrez was substituted in the second half, having earlier forced Petr Cech into a good save, Bernardo Silva added the second goal in the 65th minute from an assist by Benjamin Mendy. No team has successfully defended the English title since Manchester United in 2008-09. "But a few goals, a clean sheet at home and a win is pretty much the ideal start to the season". We went to finals. We created a lot of chances.

"It was not a ideal start but really good and we extended a really good pre-season into the Premier League", he said.

"We have to be more consistent, we know that".

In an era so obsessed with transfers that Fulham were being actively congratulated for spending north of £100 million on new players, Saturday provided a neat reminder that patience is required for newly promoted clubs.

Arsenal were playing a competitive match without Wenger in charge for the first time since September 1996. He only faced two shots on target, and made the saves he needed to.

'Look, after six weeks I don't make the difference between a new player and other players because for me, it's exactly the same performance if Mili [James Milner] and Gini [Georginio Wijnaldum] are ready to make the next step in their development as well.

"We have to be in the championship mode", he said.

He delivered a typically excellent ball in to the box where none other than 2017-18 Premier League Golden Boot victor Mohamed Salah was waiting to slot home and open this season's account.

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