Sports Desk, Apr 3 (efe-epa).- Liverpool turned in a solid performance Saturday to best Arsenal 0-3 and climb to fifth place in the Premier League.
On the same day repeating as champions became a mathematical impossibility, Jürgen Klopp’s squad took a big step toward the top four finish he set as Liverpool’s prime objective once it became clear that Manchester City were on track to win the Premier League.
The result brings Liverpool to 49 points, just 2 behind Chelsea in fourth, though the Reds will find themselves in seventh Monday night if both West Ham United and Tottenham Hotspur win in the next 48 hours.
Arsenal remain in the ninth spot with 42 points.
The visitors dominated possession – 65 percent – and outshot the Gunners 16-3, yet the contest was still scoreless as the match clock passed the hour mark.
Klopp decided to take a calculated risk, pulling defender Andrew Robertson in favor of adding Diogo Jota up front as an additional attacker.
Confirmation that he made the right decision came in the 64th minute, when Jota out-jumped everyone to head-in a great cross from Trent Alexander-Arnold and put Liverpool on the board.
Mohammed Salah doubled the lead four minutes later with his first goal in five matches, boosting his league-leading total to 18.
Arsenal goalkeeper Bernd Leno denied Salah’s bid for a second in the 75th minute, but could do nothing to stop Jota from completing a brace in the 83rd.
Sadio Mane flubbed a chance to make it 0-4 in stoppage time.
Though still far from the form they showed in 2020, Liverpool appear to be finding their bearings as they gear up for next Tuesday’s Champions League quarterfinal first leg with Real Madrid. EFE