Liverpool 3-0 Bournemouth: Mohamed Salah scores 30th of season
Last Updated: 15/04/18 7:18am
Mohamed Salah scored his 30th Premier League goal of the season as Liverpool continued their fine form with a 3-0 win over Bournemouth on Saturday.
Sadio Mane opened the scoring after seven minutes as the hosts showed no signs of tiredness following their midweek Champions League victory over Manchester City.
Salah made it 2-0 in the 69th minute when he expertly headed in from Trent Alexander-Arnold's superb pass, and Roberto Firmino added a late third to round off a comfortable win.
Liverpool: Karius (6), Alexander-Arnold (8), Van Dijk (7), Lovren (7), Robertson (7), Henderson (7), Wijnaldum (7), Oxlade-Chamberlain (8), Mane, (7) Salah (7), Firmino (7)
Subs: Milner (6), Klavan (5), Solanke (5)
Bournemouth: Begovic (5), Ake (6), Francis (5), S Cook (5), Daniels (5), Gosling (5), L Cook (6), Fraser (5), Ibe (4), King (4), Defoe (4)
Subs: Mousset (5), Wilson (6), Surman (5)
Man of the match: Trent Alexander-Arnold
The result leaves Liverpool 10 points ahead of fifth-placed Chelsea, while Salah is five goals ahead of Harry Kane in the race for the Golden Boot and now has 40 for the season in all competitions.
Bournemouth look as though they will be safe in the Premier League - with a 10-point cushion over the relegation zone - but they never looked like springing an upset at Anfield, where Liverpool are unbeaten in the league this season.
Despite playing Man City just a few days earlier, the hosts were quick out of the blocks and, after Salah missed a good early chance, Mane did not make the same mistake as he saw a header saved by Asmir Begovic and followed up and fired the rebound in.
At that stage it looked ominous for Bournemouth, but the visitors did not fold and managed to restrict Liverpool to half-chances for the rest of the first half.
Alexander-Arnold saw a low free-kick pushed away by Begovic while Salah and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain shot wide and Mane headed past the post late in the half.
The game continued in similar fashion after the break as Bournemouth defended deep and kept Liverpool at bay.
However, the Cherries' resistance was broken in the 69th minute when Alexander-Arnold picked out Salah with a fantastic pass from deep and he looped a first-time header over Begovic.
Mane and Firmino spurned chances to add to the lead before Bournemouth finally threatened, with Dan Gosling seeing a shot palmed away by Loris Karius and Callum Wilson dragging an effort wide.
But it was the hosts who had the final say as Firmino finished at the near post to round off the win.
Liverpool made one change from their midweek win over Manchester City as Henderson returned from suspension in place of Milner. Former Liverpool winger Ibe started for Bournemouth along with King, as Wilson and Pugh dropped out.
- Liverpool are unbeaten in their last 19 Premier League home games (W12 D7), 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 last 11 Premier League away games, drawing six and losing four.
- Sadio Mane is now the outright top scoring Senegalese player in Premier League history, scoring 44 goals in the competition and eclipsing Demba Ba (43).
- Mohamed Salah is the eighth different player to score 30+ goals in a single Premier League season - he's also the first African to do so.
- Salah is also only the third different player in Liverpool history to score 40+ goals in all competitions in a single season, after Roger Hunt (1961-62) and Ian Rush (1983-84 and 1986-87).
- Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain has equaled his best-ever Premier League goal involvement tally in a season (3 goals, 6 assists), level with 2016/17 (2 goals, 7 assists).
Man of the match - Trent Alexander-Arnold
Excellent in defence and also in attack, this was another encouraging display from the 19-year-old after impressing in the Champions League quarter-finals against Manchester City.
His pass for Salah's goal was superb and he helped create several other opportunities with driving runs down the right.
Jurgen Klopp on Salah: "It's all about him and all about us, how we finish the season. It's completely normal that a boy in that situation wants to be top of the scoring list, the Golden Boot. But we cannot force it; so, pass, shoot, pass, shoot, that's the normal thing to do. It's good and impressive. What a number. Wow!"
Eddie Howe: "We've come up against a team that without doubt can win the Champions League, but these games are always valuable for our learning as a team. Only in the latter stages did we come into the game with the ball."
Liverpool host West Brom next Saturday live on Sky Sports before the first leg of their Champions League semi-final against Roma on Tuesday, April 24.
Bournemouth are at home against Manchester United on Wednesday and then do not play again until Saturday, April 28 when they travel to Southampton.