Liverpool have recorded more lopsided score lines in recent season, including both their 9-0 victory over Bournemouth and 7-0 victory over Manchester United last season. They’ve never, though, tallied up the attacking chances that they did against Newcastle United in Monday’s eventual 4-2 victory.
Creating in excess of seven expected goals set a Premier League record since those numbers began to be counted, and their 34 shots—with 15 of them on target—were similarly gaudy totals in a match wherein their opponents were highly fortunate not to be on the receiving end of a historic defeat.
“So many good performances, cannot actually remember really a bad one,” said manager Jürgen Klopp afterwards. “But we had to be, because in the situations when we were not at 100% you could see Newcastle were there, but we made it really tricky for them tonight and it was a fully deserved three points.”
The Liverpool boss was being kind to his opponents, who only created around 0.7xG of chances from three shots on target while managing a paltry 38% possession but ended up with a pair of goals to show for it, making 4-2 a highly flattering result to Saudi Arabia’s Premier League sportswashing front.
Given those underlying numbers, there was a lot of praise to go around following the match, but Klopp made one of his main points of focus the performance of Mohamed Salah, with the Egyptian superstar scoring the game’s first goal and then sealing things with a penalty conversion on 86 minutes.
“Nobody should be now really surprised that Mo can change a game,” Klopp said of Salah. “He did it hundreds of times. The more you just understand what you have to do: keep going and if necessary—which is very often the case—keep improving, using situations better. And that’s what Mo did.”