picks the five games which copper-fastened Liverpool's grip on the Premier League title.
November 2: Aston Villa 1 Liverpool 2
Having already dropped points at Old Trafford a week before, another immediate lapse might have seemed too close to a slump, particularly against a relegation candidate. Failure can accumulate rapidly, and with five minutes to go the Reds looked ill at ease. Goals from Robertson and Mane, headers no less, gave the season its first magical glow. It had looked promising before; now it was on.
November 10: Liverpool 3 Manchester City 1
Too early for a title decider perhaps, but it felt as though 2018/90’s narrow deficit would not only be closed, it would grow in the opposite direction. City’s Anfield jinx returned with bells on and even Bernardo Silva’s late reply had a sense of consolation, lacking the need for a desperate, backs to the wall protection of the lead. The gap was widening.
December 4: Liverpool 5 Everton 2
Was Klopp insane? Picking second-string players for the most feverish clash of the year? It didn’t matter, everything he touched was turning to gold by this point and Everton were in disarray by half time. Origi kept up his exemplary derby record, and even the neglected Shaqiri was getting in on the act. The team that came to spoil the party went back across the park, tails between legs and manager-less. Icing never tasted so good.
December 26: Leicester 0 Liverpool 4
Newly-crowned world champions, plenty was at stake with the home side determined to hang on in the title race after suffering defeat at the Etihad the week before. They were simply blown away. Much was made of the penalty afterwards, though if Soyuncu had caught the ball and signed the damned thing it couldn’t have been more blatant. Cool finishes from Firmino and Alexander-Arnold completed the rout. Realistically, this was now a two-horse race. Maybe it wasn’t even that.
January 19: Liverpool 2 Manchester United 0
More party poopers came to call, though this was a far closer call than against Everton. A failure to seal the victory kept the fans on edge but United were blunt. Liverpool lost the league in 1989, when Michael Thomas raced through the centre and poked it past the keeper for a 2-0 win. The celebrations and chants which followed Salah’s one-on-one triggered similar belief in a title virtually clinched.