All great teams, during their peak time, experience a temporary hiccup. Be it Real Madrid or the once-great AC Milan, getting derailed had been nothing new. But in turn, such hiccups help to reorganize the team for the bigger challenge. Jurgen Klopp’s majestic Liverpool had been halted by Atletico Madrid, devastated by a low-ranked Watford side and were knocked out of FA Cup by Frank Lampard’s young Chelsea unit – and in the Reds failed to bounce back after conceding a goal.

Three defeats in a row and failing to score on all three occasions – well, this is quite unthinkable regarding a side, which is arguably the best in Europe right now. Liverpool returned to Anfiled after that terrible night at Stamford Bridge to regain form against AFC Bournemouth.

But yet again, the unthinkable happened – Bournemouth took a surprise lead inside 9 minutes. They simply hit the Reds with a wonderful counter-attack. Wilson nudged Gomez off the back after Sadio Mane’s cross was cleared and then passed to Philip Billing, who slotted in Jefferson Lerma on the overlap, who in turn, squared it for Wilson to hit the net.  A VAR check was needed to see whether the nudge on Gomez was a foul or not. The goal stayed, but it should have been called a foul.

When Bournemouth were building on the counter, the Liverpool backline was baffled – the interplay in front of goal and the pass was too easy whereas the defenders could have covered it better.

Bournemouth scored a goal against the Reds for the first time since 2017!

Anfield was silenced and keeping in mind the last three matches, it seemed that another shock was on offer.

Thankfully, Liverpool exploited an opportunity – Steve Cook, the determined captain of Bournemouth was injured and substituted. Simpson was introduced and he found it tough to cope with the pressure. He gave away an easy ball to Sadio Mane, whereas, he should have passed it vertically to the player behind Mane rather than trying to dribble past him – Mane received the ball and passed to Mohamed Salah. The Egyptian King fired through the legs of Lerma and into the bottom-right corner.

It was a shoddy pass, but Salah did not waste it on his one hundredth Premier League appearance. Salah scored his 70th Premier League goal, which him the first player from Liverpool to manage at least 20 times in all competitions in 3 straight seasons since Michael Owen, who achieved the feat between 2000-01 and 2002-03.

A few minutes later – Virgil van Dijk intercepted a pass from Lewis Cook and quickly fed Mane, who was played onside by Ake and slid a cool finish beyond Aaron Ramsdale. Liverpool took the lead and normality resumed.

In the second-half, Liverpool’s tempo dropped and Bournemouth did pose a threat – a jaw-dropping goal-line clearance from James Milner stopped Ryan Fraser from restoring parity after the hour mark. Then, the vulnerability during the transitions were evident. Fabinho had a rough time while the absence of Alisson and Jordan Henderson was felt when Bournemouth won those battles in the midfield and posed a threat against Anderson.

In the end, the score remained 2-1 and no damage was done.

Liverpool made history by winning a 22nd home league game in succession.

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