Sports Desk, Nov 20 (EFE).- Arsenal’s 8-game unbeaten run in the Premier League ended Saturday at Anfield with a 4-0 thrashing at the hands of Liverpool, who moved up to second as archrivals Manchester United sank to seventh after being embarrassed 4-1 by Watford.
The outcome on Merseyside showed that Mikel Arteta’s much improved Gunners are still some distance away from competing on level terms with the likes of the Reds.
Yet the visitors kept Liverpool at bay for most of the first half thanks largely to the heroics of goalkeeper Aaron Ramsdale, but he couldn’t stop Sadio Mane when Trent Alexander-Arnold’s free kick found the Senegalese striker at the near post in the 39th minute.
Mane scored a few minutes after an aerial collision with Arsenal’s Takehiro Tomiyasu that spurred a heated confrontation on the touch line between Arteta and Jürgen Klopp which earned each coach a yellow card.
Diogo Jota doubled the advantage in the 52nd minute and Mohamed Salah made it 3-0 in the 72nd with an assist from Mane. The fourth goal came five minutes later from late sub Takumi Minamino.
Liverpool improved to 25 points, 4 behind leaders Chelsea and 2 better than Manchester City, who play Everton on Sunday. Arsenal are fifth on 20 points.
Earlier Saturday in Watford, Man United lost for the fifth time in their last seven Premier League matches to leave beleaguered coach Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s job dangling by a thread.
The hosts thought they had gone ahead when Kiko Femenia chipped the ball over David De Gea after the United keeper stopped Ismaila Sarr from the penalty spot.
But the goal was disallowed because Femenia encroached before the whistle, as did several United defenders, which led to a re-take of the penalty.
De Gea denied Sarr again, but a poor clearance by United defender Aaron Wan-Bissaka in the 28th minute left the Spaniard exposed and Joshua King scored to give the Hornets the lead.
Sarr made it 2-0 for the home side in the 44th minute, but United halved the deficit in the 50th minute with a goal by Donny van de Beek.
Minutes later, the Dutchman got the ball to Cristiano Ronaldo – who assisted on Van de Beek’s goal – and the superstar would have scored but for a great effort by Watford keeper Ben Foster.
United were reduced to 10 men in the 69th minute as Harry Maguire picked up a second yellow card. The visitors retained the initiative, but neither Ronaldo nor Bruno Fernandes were able to capitalize on good chances and Watford got goals in stoppage time from Joao Pedro and Emmanuel Denis to rub salt in the wound.
Saturday’s other action included the debut of Liverpool legend Steven Gerrard as coach of Aston Villa, who prevailed 2-0 over Brighton & Hove Albion on late goals by Ollie Watkins and Tyrone Mings.
The day began with a dominant 3-0 performance by Chelsea against Leicester City.
Goals from Antonio Rüdiger, N’Golo Kante and Christian Pulisic sealed the 3 points for the Premier League leaders, who saw three other goals disallowed for offside. EFE