Premier League
Liverpool3Arsenal1

Liverpool 3-1 Arsenal: Mohamed Salah scores twice for Reds

Mohamed Salah
Mohamed Salah has now scored three times this season for Liverpool in the Premier League

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp says his side "do not need to excite everyone in every second" after a comfortable victory over Arsenal maintained their place at the top of the Premier League.

The Reds also preserved their 100% start to the Premier League season as Mohamed Salah scored twice to add to Joel Matip's first-half header in a dominant performance at Anfield.

"It was a performance full of power, energy, greed and passion, which I think you need against a team like Arsenal." Klopp told Sky Sports.

"The last 10 minutes I saw the possession - 53 to 47% or something like that - but over 80 minutes it must have been completely different. We were completely in charge of the game.

"We are not Disneyland, we do not need to excite everyone in every second."

The Gunners, the only other side in the top flight to win their first two games, had opportunities to shock Liverpool in a tight first half, especially when record £72m signing Nicolas Pepe shot straight at keeper Adrian after running clear.

Liverpool took control when Matip put them ahead with a powerful header from Trent Alexander-Arnold's corner four minutes before the interval.

And any hopes manager Unai Emery had of watching his side mount a recovery were snuffed out in the 49th minute after a moment of madness from new signing David Luiz, who needlessly dragged Salah back in the area.

Liverpool's Egyptian attacker drilled home the penalty and then embarrassed Luiz again out on the touchline at the start of a dazzling run that ended with a low, curling finish into the bottom corner just before the hour.

Arsenal substitute Lucas Torreira pulled one back late on, but nothing was getting in the way of Liverpool's 12th successive league victory, equalling their best sequence in the top flight under Kenny Dalglish between April and October 1990.

Liverpool back in the old routine

Liverpool had moments when they stuttered against Southampton and their defence has looked unusually fallible - but this was a movie we have seen many times before at Anfield under Jurgen Klopp.

Arsenal have suffered badly here in recent seasons, losing 5-1 last season and 4-0 in Arsene Wenger's final season. Once again, despite taking their time to hit top gear, Liverpool's ruthlessness and intensity simply proved too much for Arsenal.

Media playback is not supported on this device

Liverpool 3-1 Arsenal: Klopp praises Reds 'exceptional' energy

True, they gratefully accepted Luiz's gifts but once Matip put Liverpool ahead the pressure and intensity applied to Arsenal was simply too much for the Gunners to resist.

And, as Arsenal discovered, when you fail to take chances to punish Liverpool, the inevitable outcome is that you will be punished yourselves.

Liverpool do not simply have a prodigious work ethic that makes life permanently uncomfortable for opponents; they also have world-class attacking options as illustrated by Salah's brilliant weaving run and slide-rule finish for their third.

Klopp's side missed out on the title by a single point despite only one loss, to champions Manchester City, last season - and three wins from three has quickly put the marker down that they intend to go one better and claim that first title in 30 years.

Liability Luiz kills Arsenal chances

Luiz has a track record of success that suggests he may be able to bring moments of quality to Arsenal's defence after his surprise £8m move from Chelsea - but there is no escaping he has the enduring capability to be a complete liability.

The Brazilian, at 32, is not going to change and so it proved as he delivered a moment of crass stupidity that killed stone dead Arsenal's hopes of taking anything away from Anfield.

It is a stretch to say Arsenal had Liverpool on the ropes but, despite the overall domination of the European champions, the Gunners certainly had moments of threat through the pace and menace of Pepe and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang. They would have started the second half with hope.

Media playback is not supported on this device

Liverpool 3-1 Arsenal: Unai Emery disappointed with Liverpool defeat

Luiz made it all count for nothing when he felt his best method of dealing with Salah's 49th-minute raid into the penalty area was to blatantly drag him back by the shirt in a red-mist moment that did not even seriously require the intervention of the video assistant referee.

Salah, despite some ludicrous protests from Luiz, drilled home the penalty before taking him to cleaners when scoring Liverpool's brilliant third.

Too much of the Arsenal's playing out from the back was asking for trouble against this Liverpool side. Throw in the act of stupidity from Luiz and ultimately they got what they deserved, despite some areas for Emery to admire.

"We were doing some transitions very good and we had some chances but, in the second half, the penalty was very soft," Emery told BBC Match of the Day.

"After 2-0 our reaction was good. We needed to attack and take a different moment in the match. We are disappointed we lost 3-1 but watching some players we can be optimistic.

"We need to improve in possession and countering the pressure but Liverpool is the best team with this. We have to be realistic but we can fight closer to them."

Man of the match - Mohamed Salah (Liverpool)

Mohamed Salah
Salah scored 22 league goals for Liverpool last term and has picked up where he left off

Arsenal's Liverpool woe - the stats

  • Since Jurgen Klopp took over in October 2015, Liverpool have scored 26 goals in eight Premier League games against Arsenal - the most one side has netted against another in the competition in that period.
  • Only Everton at Arsenal (64) have conceded more away goals against a single opponent in the Premier League than Arsenal at Liverpool (62).
  • Arsenal have now failed to win any of their past 23 away league games against fellow 'Big six' sides (D8 L15) - during this run they have conceded 53 goals while keeping just one clean sheet.
  • Since the start of last season, Arsenal have given away eight Premier League penalties - only Brighton (10) have faced more.
  • Liverpool have scored 22 headed goals in the Premier League since the start of last season; seven more than any other side. The Reds have scored three in this campaign already, while no other side has scored more than one.
  • Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp has faced Arsenal eight times without defeat in the Premier League (W5 D3).
  • Mohamed Salah has been directly involved in more Premier League goals against Arsenal than against any other side (eight; six goals and two assists). He has scored in all four of his home games against them.
  • Trent Alexander-Arnold has assisted nine goals in his past 10 appearances at Anfield for Liverpool in all competitions, including assisting once in each of his past five competitive home games.
  • Nicolas Pepe has become the first player to successfully dribble past Virgil van Dijk in the Dutch defender's past 50 appearances in the Premier League, since Mikel Merino in March 2018 for Newcastle.

What's next?

Liverpool travel to Burnley in their next Premier League fixture on Saturday, 31 August (17:30 BST). Arsenal resume league action when they host Tottenham in the first north London derby of the season, on Sunday, 1 September (16:30 BST).

Line-ups

Liverpool

  • 13Adrián
  • 66Alexander-Arnold
  • 32Matip
  • 4van Dijk
  • 26Robertson
  • 14Henderson
  • 3FabinhoBooked at 90mins
  • 5WijnaldumSubstituted forMilnerat 69'minutes
  • 11Salah
  • 9FirminoSubstituted forLallanaat 86'minutes
  • 10ManéSubstituted forOxlade-Chamberlainat 77'minutes

Substitutes

  • 7Milner
  • 12Gomez
  • 15Oxlade-Chamberlain
  • 20Lallana
  • 23Shaqiri
  • 27Origi
  • 62Kelleher

Arsenal

  • 1Leno
  • 15Maitland-Niles
  • 5Papastathopoulos
  • 23David LuizBooked at 48mins
  • 18Monreal
  • 29GuendouziSubstituted forMkhitaryanat 86'minutes
  • 34Xhaka
  • 8CeballosSubstituted forTorreiraat 61'minutes
  • 28WillockSubstituted forLacazetteat 81'minutes
  • 19Pépé
  • 14Aubameyang

Substitutes

  • 7Mkhitaryan
  • 9Lacazette
  • 11Torreira
  • 21Chambers
  • 24Nelson
  • 26Martínez
  • 31Kolasinac
Referee:
Anthony Taylor
Attendance:
53,298

Match Stats

Home TeamLiverpoolAway TeamArsenal
Possession
Home52%
Away48%
Shots
Home25
Away9
Shots on Target
Home5
Away3
Corners
Home6
Away4
Fouls
Home8
Away5

Live Text

Match ends, Liverpool 3, Arsenal 1.

Full Time

Second Half ends, Liverpool 3, Arsenal 1.

Attempt missed. David Luiz (Arsenal) right footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the left from a direct free kick.

Booking

Fabinho (Liverpool) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Hand ball by Virgil van Dijk (Liverpool).

Offside, Arsenal. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang tries a through ball, but Henrikh Mkhitaryan is caught offside.

Foul by Andrew Robertson (Liverpool).

Alexandre Lacazette (Arsenal) wins a free kick on the right wing.

Offside, Arsenal. Granit Xhaka tries a through ball, but Alexandre Lacazette is caught offside.

Substitution

Substitution, Liverpool. Adam Lallana replaces Roberto Firmino.

Substitution

Substitution, Arsenal. Henrikh Mkhitaryan replaces Matteo Guendouzi.

Goal!

Goal! Liverpool 3, Arsenal 1. Lucas Torreira (Arsenal) right footed shot from the centre of the box to the bottom right corner.

Foul by Jordan Henderson (Liverpool).

Nacho Monreal (Arsenal) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Substitution

Substitution, Arsenal. Alexandre Lacazette replaces Joe Willock.

Substitution

Substitution, Liverpool. Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain replaces Sadio Mané.

Corner, Arsenal. Conceded by James Milner.

Foul by Jordan Henderson (Liverpool).

Matteo Guendouzi (Arsenal) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Substitution

Substitution, Liverpool. James Milner replaces Georginio Wijnaldum.

Attempt blocked. Roberto Firmino (Liverpool) left footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked.

Foul by Sadio Mané (Liverpool).

Lucas Torreira (Arsenal) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Offside, Liverpool. Roberto Firmino tries a through ball, but Mohamed Salah is caught offside.

Corner, Arsenal. Conceded by Trent Alexander-Arnold.

Attempt missed. Nacho Monreal (Arsenal) header from the centre of the box misses to the left. Assisted by Lucas Torreira with a cross following a corner.

Corner, Arsenal. Conceded by Andrew Robertson.

Attempt saved. Roberto Firmino (Liverpool) left footed shot from the left side of the box is saved in the top centre of the goal. Assisted by Sadio Mané.

Foul by Andrew Robertson (Liverpool).

Granit Xhaka (Arsenal) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Attempt blocked. Andrew Robertson (Liverpool) left footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Sadio Mané.

Substitution

Substitution, Arsenal. Lucas Torreira replaces Dani Ceballos.

Foul by Andrew Robertson (Liverpool).

Dani Ceballos (Arsenal) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Goal!

Goal! Liverpool 3, Arsenal 0. Mohamed Salah (Liverpool) left footed shot from the right side of the box to the bottom left corner. Assisted by Fabinho.

Attempt missed. Mohamed Salah (Liverpool) header from very close range is just a bit too high. Assisted by Andrew Robertson with a cross.

Attempt blocked. Roberto Firmino (Liverpool) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Andrew Robertson.

Attempt blocked. Trent Alexander-Arnold (Liverpool) left footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked.

Attempt blocked. Trent Alexander-Arnold (Liverpool) right footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Mohamed Salah.

Corner, Arsenal. Conceded by Joel Matip.

goal

As It Stood

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Liverpool33009369
2Arsenal32014406
3Leicester31203215
4Man City21107254
5Man Utd31116334
6Tottenham21105324
7Brighton31114314
8Bournemouth21103214
9Sheff Utd31113304
10Crystal Palace31112204
11Everton311112-14
12Chelsea311147-34
13West Ham311147-34
14Burnley21014223
15Aston Villa310245-13
16Norwich310268-23
17Southampton310235-23
18Wolves20201102
19Newcastle200214-30
20Watford300317-60
View full Premier League table

Top Stories