Liverpool put their absences behind them as took on Aston Villa at Anfield, with a 3-0 victory well deserved as they kept up their dominant form.
Liverpool 3-0 Aston Villa
Premier League (4), Anfield
September 3, 2023
Szoboszlai 3′ (assist – Alexander-Arnold)
Cash OG 22′ (assist – Nunez)
Salah 55′ (assist – Nunez)
Those within Anfield had barely settled into their seats when they were up on their feet again on Sunday, as a Dominik Szoboszlai stunner arrowed in within three minutes.
A show of pure technique from the Kop’s new favourite, Szoboszlai fired in from the edge of the box after Trent Alexander-Arnold‘s corner evaded everyone.
Liverpool were comfortable in their lead against a Villa side left open by their defensive setup – and little changed after injury to Diego Carlos prompted a switch to a back four.
Alexander-Arnold, playing slightly deeper than his usual advanced midfield role, lofted a perfect pass over to the onrushing Mo Salah, who flicked the ball across to Darwin Nunez, the shot bouncing off the post and in via Matty Cash.
It should have been three, with Joel Matip heading Alexander-Arnold’s free-kick wide, while at the other end, a lack of communication and inept finishing kept Villa out.
HT: Liverpool 2-0 Aston Villa
There were no changes for either side at the break, and Villa had a big chance early on, but as has been the case many times already this season, Alisson was there to deny Cash.
Another stunning pass from Alexander-Arnold released Salah down the right flank, and putting it on a plate for Nunez with an outside-of-the-boot pass, the Egyptian saw his strike partner head wide.
Minutes later, though, Nunez returned the favour, flicking on Andy Robertson‘s corner for Salah to convert from close range for 3-0.
With a three-goal lead, Jurgen Klopp flexed his attacking depth with the introduction of Harvey Elliott, Diogo Jota and Cody Gakpo for Curtis Jones, Luis Diaz and Nunez, who received a rapturous send-off.
From there on, it was a procession for Liverpool, dominating possession and rarely being tested anywhere near Alisson‘s goal, onto a third win in four.
Any sympathy for Unai Emery’s side dissolved as their fans opted for the national anthem late on, frustrated after watching Villa toyed with at Anfield.
TIA Man of the Match: Trent Alexander-Arnold
Referee: Simon Hooper
Liverpool: Alisson; Alexander-Arnold (Quansah 71′), Matip, Gomez, Robertson; Jones (Elliott 64′), Szoboszlai, Mac Allister (Endo 87′); Salah, Diaz (Jota 64′), Nunez (Gakpo 64′)
Subs not used: Kelleher, Tsimikas, Bajcetic, Doak
Aston Villa: Martinez; Konsa, Carlos (Bailey 19′, Zaniolo 65′), Torres; Cash, Kamara, Luiz (Tielemans 72′), Digne; McGinn; Diaby, Watkins (Duran 73′)
Subs not used: Olsen, Chambers, Lenglet, Dendoncker, Kellyman