Mane boosts Liverpool’s record hunt as City stumble at Southampton

AFP
July 07, 2020

LONDON: Sadio Mane helped Liverpool keep alive their bid to set a new Premier League points record as the champions beat Aston Villa 2-0 to restore a 23-point lead over Manchester City, who were...

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LONDON: Sadio Mane helped Liverpool keep alive their bid to set a new Premier League points record as the champions beat Aston Villa 2-0 to restore a 23-point lead over Manchester City, who were beaten at Southampton on Sunday.

Just four days after City thrashed Liverpool 4-0 to seemingly lay down a marker next season’s title race, both sides showed why there has been a chasm between them in the Reds’ romp to a first league title in 30 years.

Liverpool were far from their best in their first outing at an empty Anfield as champions, but still ground out the three points in a manner they so often have this season in the final 20 minutes.

Mane broke struggling Villa’s stubborn resistence by smashing Naby Keita’s pass in off the underside of the crossbar from close range for his 20th goal of the season before substitute Curtis Jones rounded off a big weekend for the 19-year-old after signing a new five-year contract on Saturday.

Victory moved Liverpool onto 89 points and they need four wins from their remaining five games to surpass City’s record 100-point total from 2017-18. City, by contrast, saw another dominant display go unrewarded as Che Adams’s spectacular first goal for Southampton claimed a 1-0 win for the Saints.

Pep Guardiola’s men had 74 percent possession and had 26 shots but could not find a way past Alex McCarthy as Fernandinho hit the post and Gabriel Jesus, David Silva and Bernardo Silva all wasted huge chances.



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