Eddie Howe gracious in defeat following Bournemouth's hammering at the hands of Liverpool

Eddie Howe admitted that his Bournemouth side were beaten by the better team, as Liverpool triumphed over the Cherries on Saturday.

It was a beautiful Anfield day for football and the home side echoed that, opening the scoring with Sadio Mane before Mohamed Salah's header ended any hopes of a Bournemouth revival, Roberto Firmino adding a third late on.

"Difficult game," said Howe in the aftermath.

"Full credit to Liverpool, comparing to last season they've improved and grown as a team, they've shown that throughout the season in the Premier League and the Champions League.

"In the first half we struggled to live with their pace, energy and intensity, we rode our luck in that period and we were happy to come in 1-0 down.

"Second-half I though we improved greatly, I thought we were well in the game until a brilliant second goal from their perspective kills the game."

Bright from Ake

There were some positives for Bournemouth, who managed to contain Salah fairly well before a header from Trent Alexander-Arnold's cross saw the Egyptian bag his 40th of the season in all competitions.

It was Nathan Ake, playing on the left side of a back three, that had the challenge of keeping Salah quite, the Dutchman doing fairly well in comparison to some more senior defender's that have faced Liverpool's star man this season.

On Ake, Howe said; "I thought Nathan Ake and Steve Cook individually performed very well, in some tough situations against some very good players, they defended their one vs one duels very well.

"Nathan especially can count himself unlucky to be on the end of that score-line."

No chance of holiday mode

Now eleventh in the table with a few games to go, Bournemouth's 38 points should be enough to let them put their feet up in the knowledge they've secured another season in the top flight.

However, Howe isn't going into the final games with that frame of mind.

"There's everything to play for," he explained.

"I've said all along we consider ourselves in a relegation battle until we're mathematically safe.

"We've encountered a team that was too good for us today, but we've got some massive games to come.