Liverpool 2-0 Fulham: Salah and Shaqiri down Cottagers as miserable run continues
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Liverpool 2-0 Fulham: Salah and Shaqiri down Cottagers as miserable run continues

Liverpool cranked up further pressure on Fulham boss Slaviša Jokanović after the Reds cruised to comfortable 2-0 victory at Anfield.

joshuakerr97
Joshua Kerr
liverpool-fcAlisson, Alexander-Arnold, Gomez, Van Dijk, Robertson, Fabinho (Keita 90+2), Wijnaldum (Henderson 69), Shaqiri (Milner 81), Salah, Mane, Firmino
fulham-fcRico, Christie, Chambers, Le Marchand, Mawson, Odoi, Anguissa (Johansen 84), Cairney (Seri 63), Sessegnon, Schurrle (Vietto 78), Mitrovic
SCORE1-0. Min 41, Salah. 2-0. Min 53, Shaqiri
INCIDENTSPremier League Gameweek 12 Clash

Liverpool returned to winning ways with a routine 2-0 victory over bottom of the pile Fulham as the pressure continues to grow on manager Slaviša Jokanović.

The visitors will feel a huge sense of injustice after Aleksandar Mitrović's goal four minutes before the break was wrongly ruled offside. The Reds broke away at blistering pace seconds later as Mohamed Salah was unleashed on the counter-attack to give Liverpool the lead and capitalise on further Fulham defensive errors.

Xherdan Shaqiri was back in starting eleven following his withdrawal from the squad in Serbia. His absence was notable as the Swiss International displayed another promising performance as the former Stoke man doubled to scoring with an elegant finish to seal the points for Liverpool.

The result moves the Reds temporarily to the top of the Premier League table. However, with both Manchester City and Chelsea still to play, Liverpool could still slip back down to third by the end of the day.

Injustice for Fulham as Salah punishes Cottagers

Jokanovic's dejected side had arrived at Anfield with the worst defensive record in the division but with on-loan Sevilla goalkeeper Sergio Rico impressing, they kept the hosts at bay for long periods and also created several promising chances.

The tempo of the match hung in the balance for the opening 15 minutes. Liverpool's familiar intricate range of passing looked to cut Fulham's leaky defence open. 

The Reds came close after only three minutes when Trent Alexander Arnold whipped in a cross for Roberto Firmino. The Brazilian let the ball roll to Sadio Mane who curled his effort agonisingly wide to squander a golden opportunity for Liverpool to take the lead.

Fulham had the opportunity of the half when Ryan Sessegnon came bursting through Klopp's defensive line. The young Englishman used his lightning pace to dance through Virgil van Dijk and Joe Gomez before hammering a left-footed effort just inches past the post.

Georginho Wijnaldum was back to his best in midfield following the horror showing in Belgrade. The Netherlands international was consistently screening his midfielders taking charge of proceedings.

Shaqiri returned to the starting XI despite his absence in the Champions League. The Reds magician was given a more advanced midfield role and came close when his fizzled strike hit the outside of the post.

Liverpool continued to mount pressure and Shaqiri came close again when a link up with Mane. The Liverpool forward dazzled through the Fulham defence before setting up Shaqiri who drilled his shot just wide.

The controversy surrounding the affair suddenly erupted just before half-time when the visitors despite the run of play had the ball in the back of the net.

Tom Cairney picked up the ball on the edge of the box and the Fulham skipper curled in a delicious cross that struck the head of Mitrovic whose header left Alisson helpless to give Fulham an unlikely lead.

However, the linesman was quick to break the visitor's hearts as his decision to rule the goal offside proves incorrect and the Cottagers fell quickly behind as Liverpool broke away at lightning speed to punish Fulham.

Alisson fed the ball to Alexander-Arnold who magnificently found Salah who beat the offside trap before comfortably tapping home to capitalise on some further horrendous defending for Jokanovic's side.

Shaqiri doubles advantage as Reds ease to victory

Liverpool were dominant in the second period and never allowed the Cottagers back into the affair. 

It didn't take long for the hosts to double their tally and expose the Fulham back-line to further ridicule as another defensive error gifted the Reds their second on the day.

Robertson lifted a teasing cross into the visitor's box after the visitor's cleared from a corner. None of the Fulham defence reacted to the danger as Shaqiri was left with acres of space before his cool finish into the bottom corner emphatically killed the game for Jokanovic's side.

Fulham shot-stopper Rico produced a promising performance to keep the scoreline respectable as Liverpool looked to rekindle their attacking flair.

Salah's pace and intelligent movement caused Jokanovic's side problems all afternoon and the inclusion of Shaqiri allowed the Egyptian space to terrorise the Fulham defence from start to finish.

The result ensures Liverpool maintain their best start to a season since 2002/03 as well as return the Merseysiders to the summit of the table.

For Fulham, it piles further misery on Jokanovic whose job comes under further threat with his team bottom of the pile despite spending over £100 million in the summer.

Both teams will have over a fortnight to recover from today's action as the International break returns to action with the Reds travelling to Watford whilst Fulham await their biggest match of the season when they host fellow strugglers Southampton at Craven Cottage on November 24.

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