A 2-0 win for Liverpool over the visiting Sheffield United ensured Jurgen Klopp’s side remain unbeaten in the league for an entire calendar year.
A Mo Salah goal within four minutes put Liverpool on their way at Anfield, with Sadio Mane adding his own effort in the second half to wrap things up.
The win means that the Reds restore their 14-point lead over Leicester City in second, with a game in hand over their closest rivals.
Ahead of the two best defences in the league meeting on Merseyside, Jurgen Klopp made just one change from the XI that started the win over Wolves last Sunday, with James Milner coming in for Adam Lallana, while the visitors made two changes of their own.
Muhamed Besic and Callum Robinson dropped to the bench following the 2-0 defeat to Manchester City, with John Lundstram and David McGoldrick coming in to replace them.
Three-and-a-half minutes in and Liverpool were on their way. A long ball down the left channel found Andy Robertson after George Baldock lost his footing. The Scot took a touch and rolled it into the path of Salah, who side-footed past Dean Henderson from six yards out to give his side the lead.
The Blades responded and got on the front foot. John Lundstram and McGoldrick both had efforts on goal, with Alisson saving smartly from the latter. But Salah nearly doubled the lead in the 12th minute when he was picked out by Roberto Firmino, only for an incredible save from Henderson denying the Egyptian.
Despite playing well, the visitors struggled the speed of passing that their hosts demonstrated. A lightening move from end to end saw Sadio Mane square a ball to Gini Wijnaldum but the Dutchman’s effort whistled a fraction over.
Milner went close, Salah had a strike palmed away and Henderson shot from range. As disciplined as Sheffield United, were it was Liverpool that dictated the first half’s tempo – in possession, Klopp’s side were irresistible. Every time they regained the ball in transition, Anfield surged.
22 - Mohamed Salah has scored against 22 of the 25 different Premier League opponents he's faced as a Liverpool player, only failing to net against Manchester United, Swansea City and Aston Villa. Array. pic.twitter.com/VQdJItAqiu— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) January 2, 2020
As soon as the whistle for the second half blew, it was more of the same. Wilder’s men diligent and organised, but Liverpool offering that bit more quality on the ball. Firmino came agonisingly close with a sharp, dipping effort, Salah hit the post and then Mane went one better.
Picking up the ball on the break on the left wing, the Senegalese forward played a one-two with Salah, before poking the ball past Henderson. The Sheffield United stopper got enough on it, but Mane gobbled up the loose ball to put into an empty net.
Liverpool’s front three dazzled all night, all three had chances to make it three after Mane’s goal with Henderson performing admirably with the Kop behind him urging otherwise.
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