Premier League stats: Liverpool secure Christmas number one but Man City's woes go on

Jurgen Klopp and Pep Guardiola
Liverpool are guaranteed to be top on Christmas Day after beating Bournemouth 3-0 on Saturday

It's official. Jurgen Klopp has landed another Christmas number one with Liverpool's 2019 title challenge entry.

But can they correct a record that has previously seen them fail to convert that promise into a Premier League trophy?

Meanwhile, Pep Guardiola's worst start to a campaign goes on - but Jonjo Shelvey's season just keeps getting better.

BBC Sport takes a look at the key statistics from the weekend's Premier League action.

Official Christmas number ones

With only two rounds of Premier League fixtures to come before Christmas, Saturday's 3-0 win against Bournemouth means Liverpool are guaranteed to be top of the table when they face current closest challengers Leicester City on 26 December.

Eight points ahead of Brendan Rodgers' Leicester and 14 clear of reigning champions Manchester City, last season's runners-up are in a terrific position.

But will recent history begin to weigh heavy on their shoulders?

Falling agonisingly short of City by a single point in 2018-19, the Reds failed to convert a Christmas Day advantage of nine points last year.

In eight of the past 11 seasons, the leaders on 25 December have gone on to win the title, but it is Liverpool who remain the only exception - having also come up short in 2008-09 and 2013-14.

And while the champions may be stumbling, Leicester are enjoying their best winning run in the club's top-flight history. The Foxes appear to be on the hunt.

For now, Liverpool continue on an impressive run that has seen them win 24 of their past 25 league games and score at least twice in 23 of those.

And they've maintained that despite granting rest to key players, with Mohamed Salah returning to action on Saturday for his 100th Premier League outing.

The Egyptian celebrated his landmark appearance with his 63rd goal in the English top flight - a record which leaves him among the division's greats. Only Alan Shearer, Ruud van Nistelrooy and Sergio Aguero were more prolific in their opening century of games.

Guardiola's woes continue

Defeat by bitter rivals Manchester United, meanwhile, leaves reigning champions Manchester City with a mountain to climb. One steeper than any side has previously managed to scale.

Yes, no team in the history of the English top flight has ever gone on to win the title after slipping as far as 14 points behind the league leaders at the end of a day's play.

That jaw-dropping deficit means Guardiola's side are currently as close to being caught by 13th-placed Burnley as they are to reeling in Klopp's runaway Reds.

And for Guardiola, a total of 32 points after the first 16 matches represents the Spaniard's worst points return of any top-flight season.

He had 33 points earned at this stage of his debut season in the Premier League in 2016-17 - as the former Bayern Munich boss took time to adapt to life in England. Otherwise, his poorest start to a campaign was when he collected 37 points after 16 games in 2011-12. That was his fourth and final season with Barcelona.

Those are the only two seasons to date in which Guardiola has not won the league title as an active manager, and it's looking increasingly likely he will miss out again come May next year.

Granted, you can never say never in football.

Saturday's derby defeat by rivals United was also the first time under the 48-year-old that City have lost two home league games in a season.

In fact, it's only the third time that has happened to Guardiola in his 11 managerial campaigns.

A blistering start saw Manchester United become the first away side to race 2-0 ahead at Etihad Stadium in the Premier League since Liverpool in November 2015.

Furthermore, in successfully holding out in a tense finale, United extended their record of never losing when leading by two or more goals at half-time to an impressive 171 matches.

City, meanwhile, have never won when trailing by a margin of at least two goals in the Premier League, after 51 attempts.

Shelvey leading Newcastle charge

Shelvey is a player in form.

With his header against Southampton, the English midfielder has scored in each of his past three Premier League games for Newcastle to make it six goals in 12 appearances.

For context, his previous six goals in the English top flight were sprawled across 116 matches.

Shelvey's prolific streak, which puts him level with compatriots James Maddison and Dele Alli on five goals this season, has coincided with Newcastle's growing momentum under Steve Bruce, whose side have lost once in their past seven league games.

Ex-Sheffield Wednesday boss Bruce said he understood the fans' frustrations after he was appointed as successor to Rafael Benitez in July.

But, after taking 13 points from a possible 18 since the start of November, Newcastle's tally of 22 points from their opening 16 games leaves them nine points better off than they were at the same stage under Benitez last season.

The Magpies never bettered their current run of seven league games unbeaten at St James' Park under fan favourite Benitez either. Their best home run in the past decade was 10 under Alan Pardew in 2011 - it's Crystal Palace, Everton and Leicester next at home as Bruce's side attempt to match that.

For Newcastle, sitting in the top half of the table and seven points clear of the relegation zone with the halfway stage approaching, it's undoubtedly so far, so good.