Liverpool clung on for a nail-biting 3-1 win over Arsenal at Anfield in the Premier League last night to move up to third spot in the standings.
The Gunners were firing blanks in the first half and ended the opening 45 minutes without a single touch of the ball in their hosts’ penalty area.
They were run ragged by a pacey and effective Liverpool outfit that looked a far cry from the side that was soundly beaten 3-1 by Leicester City last time out.
It took the home side less than 10 minutes to find the opening goal. Poor defending from Arsenal allowed a hopeful long ball to find its way to Adam Lallana, who laid the ball off for Sadio Mane on the right wing.
The forward sent a stinging low ball across the box, through Philippe Coutinho to Roberto Firmino at the back post and the Brazilian blasted the ball into the back of the net.
They continued to assert their dominance and would go into the break with a two-goal cushion after Mane fired past Petr Cech from the edge of the area.
The visitors were much better after the break and pulled one back through a neat Danny Welbeck dink over Simon Mignolet in the 57th minute.
However, the Reds would have the final say, with a flowing counter-attacking move a minute into second-half injury time culminating in Divock Origi playing a low cross into the box for Georginio Wijnaldum, who showed great composure to finish with his first-time attempt to secure the win.
In the day’s earlier fixtures, a Marko Arnautovic brace helped Stoke City to a 2-0 win over Middlesbrough at the bet365 Stadium.
Manchester United will be disappointed with their 1-1 draw against 10-man Bournemouth at Old Trafford after Marcos Rojo’s 23rd-minute strike was cancelled out by a Josh King penalty in the 40th minute.
Andrew Surman was sent off for the visitors on the stroke of half time for the visitors, while Tyrone Mings and Zlatan Ibrahimovic could both face retrospective disciplinary action for a stamp and an elbow, respectively.
Elsewhere, Swansea Fernando Llorente grabbed a late winner to help Swansea to a dramatic come-from-behind 3-2 win over Burnley at the Liberty Stadium.
The Spaniard got the hosts off to a great start when he opened the scoring in the 12th minute, but Andre Gray levelled from the penalty spot in the 20th minute before adding a second to put his side 2-1 in the 61st minute.
Martin Olsson showed great composure in front of goal in the 69th minute to bring the scores level again before Llorente stole the show two minutes into injury time at the end of the match.
The 32-year-old target man did what he does best, hustling in the box at a corner before timing his jump to perfection and powering his header into the back of the net.
Nathan Redmond bagged a brace to help Southampton to a thoroughly entertaining 4-3 win over Watford at Vicarage Road, while Wilfried Zaha and Andros Townsend got on the scoresheet for Crystal Palace in a 2-0 win over West Brom at the Hawthorns. – TEAMtalk Media