EPL: League leaders pounce on Alisson errors to stay top of the log
A painful, frustrating wait stretching back to May 2003 was finally ended by Manchester City, with their victory at Anfield ending a 17-match winless streak against Liverpool here, while priming them to regain the league title.
An encounter that was largely defined by Alisson’s errors in the final stanza of play also erased Pep Guardiola’s misery at this stadium, but compounded the hosts’ recent misery: they’ve lost three in a row on their own turf in the division for the first time since September 1963.
The defending champions continue to crumble while their chief rivals have managed to turn what was their most obvious weakness into a steely strength.
The importance of the clash could be gleaned from the fact that there was greater noise emanating from the technical areas and both benches than has previously been heard at a supporter-less Anfield.
Each successful press and tackle was greeted like a mini victory for each side’s respective approach.
As expected, the shape of the match followed the recent strategic jostling between these heavyweights, as opposed to the explosive affairs that previously defined this fixture. Exit entertainment, enter tactical warfare.
Guardiola’s side intended to dominate the ball, Liverpool wanted to thieve possession and turn it into rapid attacks. The new-and-improved City do not succumb in transition, though and their diligence without the ball starved the hosts of space to run into.