40 up for Salah – Klopp praises 'exceptional' Liverpool's 'crazy' amount of goals

Mohamed Salah scores for Liverpool against Bournemouth

Manager Jurgen Klopp said it is “crazy” the amount of goals Liverpool have scored this season after an “exceptional” 3-0 victory over Bournemouth took their tally up to 121 in all competitions.

He added that their display ended an “outstanding week” as Mohamed Salah scored his 30th Premier League goal to help Liverpool move to within a point of second-placed Manchester United.

The hosts made the perfect start when Sadio Mane followed up his own header to prod the ball past Cherries keeper Asmir Begovic.

Salah then nonchalantly headed Trent Alexander-Arnold’s pass over Begovic in the 69th minute for his 40th goal of the season in all competitions – the first player to achieve that figure for Liverpool since Ian Rush in 1986-87.

Klopp, who described his team as playing “like lions”, said any initial reservations over Salah – a £34m signing from Roma last summer – had been dispelled.

“When you saw him playing in Rome there was this last question around him: if you don’t play in England, you can’t say yes because it is more physical.

“But there was a moment when we said: ‘Yes, he is kind of smart and he doesn’t need to look like a bodybuilder.'”

Roberto Firmino confirmed a fifth win in six games for the Reds with his 15th league goal of the campaign, prompting Klopp to describe their goalscoring record as “impressive”.

Liverpool’s front three of Salah, Mane and Firmino have scored 83 goals this season, while the Reds have managed 300 goals in 148 games under Klopp.

“What a number. Wow! That’s really good but we have to carry on – there are a few games to come,” Klopp said.

The Reds beat Premier League leaders Manchester City 5-1 on aggregate to reach the Champions League semi-finals on Tuesday, and the hosts were quickly into a rhythm and intensity that Bournemouth struggled to match on Saturday.

During a dominant first half, the hosts created 10 goalscoring opportunities to Bournemouth’s one, and by full-time Liverpool had made 618 passes to the visitors’ 375.

The only downside of an otherwise trouble-free match for the Reds was an injury to Croatia defender Dejan Lovren, who limped off in the 83rd minute.

Bournemouth, who did not test Liverpool goalkeeper Loris Karius until Andrew Surman’s late shot, remain 11th on 38 points.

“We played a very good team today – one of the best in Europe – and they are showing that,” said Cherries manager Eddie Howe.

Salah closes on Rush record

Before Saturday, Julian Dicks was the last Liverpool player to score at Anfield on the day of a Grand National, in 1994, but Salah’s appearance on the scoresheet against Bournemouth had an air of inevitability about it.

The Egypt forward has now netted eight goals in his past five games and is closing in on Liverpool’s record of 47, set by Rush in 1983-84.

However, while it took Rush 65 games to reach his total, Salah has currently played 20 fewer games.

The 25-year-old’s goals and assists have earned Liverpool 15 points this term – more than any other Premier League player – and he is regarded as a strong contender for the Professional Footballers’ Association Players’ Player of the Year award.

Cook’s calmness

While Bournemouth were overrun by a Liverpool performance brimming with energy, Lewis Cook’s showing was one bright spot for the visitors.

Cook, who made his England debut in the 1-1 draw against Italy in March, exuded calmness in midfield, a sign of his growing maturity since joining the Cherries from Leeds as a 19-year-old in 2016.

Bournemouth have earned 18 points from losing positions this season – more than any other team in the Premier League – but not even Cook’s best efforts could rally his team-mates into a recovery on Saturday.

However, at the time of his 73rd-minute substitution, he had covered 9.16km – the second-biggest distance of any visiting player at Anfield in 2017-18.

Man of the match – Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain (Liverpool)

Liverpool midfielder Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain

‘We have to stay angry’ – what they said

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp on BBC Sport: “A good performance – and a very, very, very, very important one after an outstanding week.

“Today it felt like a parade with people in their cars using the horn – wow. But we have to stay angry.

“We played Bournemouth, the rest was a few days ago and I said a few times our whole lives is Champions League qualification, so these games are all so important.

“We scored one but had chance after chance with really good football against a side full of confidence – good footballers, quick on the counter-attack – which makes your life really uncomfortable.”

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Former England and Arsenal striker Ian Wright on Match of the Day: “The two games against Manchester City were arguably the biggest of Trent Alexander-Arnold’s career and how he dealt with Leroy Sane has given him the confidence to move on.

“I didn’t realise his distribution was as good as it is. It reminds me of when Rob Jones came on the scene.

“He put some great balls in. Brilliant awareness. You can see he and Mo Salah work together in training.”

Bournemouth manager Eddie Howe on BBC Sport: “At half-time we were in the game but their second goal came out of the blue – the ball from Trent Alexander-Arnold and Mohamed Salah’s header were unbelievable.

“We were kicking ourselves really because we always believed we could come back if there was one goal in it.

“That is the individual quality they possess. You won’t see a better goal than that this weekend, a real team goal. It gave us a mountain to climb.

“We had chances after that, didn’t take them and the third goal was unfair on us.

“We wanted to stay in the game and have a go at them late in the match – at 2-0 that is a lot more difficult. I was pleased there were signs we could compete but it came too late.”

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First African to score 30 Premier League goals – the stats

  • Liverpool are unbeaten in their past 19 Premier League home games, the longest current run in the division, and the Reds’ longest run since August 2009 (31 games).
  • Bournemouth have enjoyed just one win in their past 11 Premier League away games, drawing six and losing four.
  • Mane is now the outright top scoring Senegalese player in Premier League history, netting 44 goals in the competition and eclipsing Demba Ba (43).
  • Of players to have hit 10 or more goals in all of their Premier League seasons, only Sergio Aguero (seven) and Eric Cantona (five) have done it more often than Mane (four).
  • Salah is the eighth different player to score 30 or more goals in a single Premier League season – he is also the first African to do so.
  • Salah is also only the third different player in Liverpool history to score 40 or more goals in all competitions in a single season, after Roger Hunt (1961-62) and Ian Rush (1983-84 and 1986-87).
  • Firmino has had a hand in five goals in his past five Premier League games against Bournemouth (three goals, two assists).

What’s next?

Liverpool travel to the Hawthorns to face West Bromwich Albion next Saturday, 21 April (12:30 BST) while Bournemouth host Manchester United on Wednesday, 18 April (19:45 BST).

Line-ups

Liverpool

  • 1Karius
  • 66Alexander-Arnold
  • 6LovrenSubstituted forKlavanat 83′minutes
  • 4van Dijk
  • 26Robertson
  • 5Wijnaldum
  • 14Henderson
  • 21Oxlade-ChamberlainBooked at 54mins
  • 11Salah
  • 9FirminoSubstituted forSolankeat 90+1′minutes
  • 19ManéSubstituted forMilnerat 77′minutes

Substitutes

  • 7Milner
  • 17Klavan
  • 18Moreno
  • 22Mignolet
  • 28Ings
  • 29Solanke
  • 58Woodburn

Bournemouth

  • 27Begovic
  • 24Fraser
  • 2Francis
  • 3S Cook
  • 5AkéBooked at 15mins
  • 11Daniels
  • 33IbeSubstituted forMoussetat 58′minutes
  • 16L CookSubstituted forSurmanat 73′minutes
  • 4Gosling
  • 17King
  • 18DefoeSubstituted forWilsonat 70′minutes

Substitutes

  • 1Boruc
  • 6Surman
  • 7Pugh
  • 13Wilson
  • 14B Smith
  • 31Mousset
  • 42Simpson
Referee:
Chris Kavanagh
Attendance:
52,959

Match Stats

Home TeamLiverpoolAway TeamBournemouth
Possession
Home62%
Away38%
Shots
Home20
Away6
Shots on Target
Home7
Away1
Corners
Home7
Away5
Fouls
Home9
Away9

Live Text

Match ends, Liverpool 3, Bournemouth 0.

Full Time

Second Half ends, Liverpool 3, Bournemouth 0.

Attempt missed. Andrew Robertson (Liverpool) left footed shot from the left side of the box is high and wide to the left. Assisted by Mohamed Salah.

Substitution

Substitution, Liverpool. Dominic Solanke replaces Roberto Firmino.

Goal!

Goal! Liverpool 3, Bournemouth 0. Roberto Firmino (Liverpool) right footed shot from the centre of the box to the bottom left corner. Assisted by Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain.

Attempt missed. Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain (Liverpool) right footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses to the left. Assisted by Georginio Wijnaldum.

Roberto Firmino (Liverpool) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Steve Cook (Bournemouth).

Virgil van Dijk (Liverpool) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Callum Wilson (Bournemouth).

Attempt blocked. Joshua King (Bournemouth) right footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Charlie Daniels.

Attempt missed. Callum Wilson (Bournemouth) left footed shot from the left side of the box is close, but misses to the right. Assisted by Joshua King.

Substitution

Substitution, Liverpool. Ragnar Klavan replaces Dejan Lovren because of an injury.

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

Attempt blocked. Joshua King (Bournemouth) right footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Ryan Fraser with a cross.

Corner, Bournemouth. Conceded by Trent Alexander-Arnold.

Attempt blocked. Joshua King (Bournemouth) right footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Simon Francis with a cross.

Attempt saved. Dan Gosling (Bournemouth) right footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the bottom right corner.

Attempt missed. Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain (Liverpool) right footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the right. Assisted by Georginio Wijnaldum.

Corner, Liverpool. Conceded by Steve Cook.

Corner, Bournemouth. Conceded by Dejan Lovren.

Substitution

Substitution, Liverpool. James Milner replaces Sadio Mané.

Offside, Bournemouth. Andrew Surman tries a through ball, but Joshua King is caught offside.

Corner, Bournemouth. Conceded by Jordan Henderson.

Attempt blocked. Roberto Firmino (Liverpool) with an attempt from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain.

Substitution

Substitution, Bournemouth. Andrew Surman replaces Lewis Cook.

Attempt missed. Sadio Mané (Liverpool) left footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses to the left. Assisted by Mohamed Salah.

Substitution

Substitution, Bournemouth. Callum Wilson replaces Jermain Defoe.

Goal!

Goal! Liverpool 2, Bournemouth 0. Mohamed Salah (Liverpool) header from the centre of the box to the bottom left corner. Assisted by Trent Alexander-Arnold.

Foul by Roberto Firmino (Liverpool).

Ryan Fraser (Bournemouth) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Sadio Mané (Liverpool) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Foul by Lewis Cook (Bournemouth).

Attempt blocked. Mohamed Salah (Liverpool) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Roberto Firmino.

Offside, Liverpool. Dejan Lovren tries a through ball, but Roberto Firmino is caught offside.

Attempt saved. Mohamed Salah (Liverpool) left footed shot from outside the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Trent Alexander-Arnold.

Offside, Liverpool. Sadio Mané tries a through ball, but Roberto Firmino is caught offside.

Substitution

Substitution, Bournemouth. Lys Mousset replaces Jordon Ibe.

Attempt missed. Virgil van Dijk (Liverpool) right footed shot from outside the box is too high. Assisted by Georginio Wijnaldum.

Booking

Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain (Liverpool) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

goal

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