5 talking points from Liverpool's 2-0 win over Everton

Liverpool returned to winning ways on Saturday afternoon following a 2-0 win over 10-man Everton, thanks to a Mohamed Salah brace.

Jurgen Klopp’s men had failed to win their two previous Premier League matches, and had their job made easier today after Ashley Young picked up two yellow cards in the first half.

The first, a late leg out on Luis Diaz, was followed by a second caution not long after, bringing down the Colombian just outside the penalty area.

Liverpool had to work as they looked to break down a stubborn Everton defence, but a Michael Keane handball gave Salah the chance to open the scoring in the 75th minute, and the Egyptian fired past Jordan Pickford from the penalty spot.

Klopp’s side remained in control for the rest of the second half and doubled their lead in the 97th minute after a Darwin Nunez counter-attack was squared for a Salah finish.

As Liverpool moved, temporarily, to the top of the Premier League, here are five talking points from the game.

1) Salah is inevitable

Liverpool celebrate Mohamed Salah goal, ProShots

It certainly wasn’t Salah’s best game today for Liverpool.

Throughout the match, as Liverpool looked to break down the Everton defence, the Egyptian struggled to get past the likes of Vitaliy Mykolenko and Jarrad Branthwaite.

However, as learnt over the years, give Salah a chance and he will certainly take it.

The 31-year-old buried his penalty past Pickford with full confidence, certainly not looking like a man who had struggled to find a rhythm for the past 75 minutes.

Right before the final whistle, Salah grabbed his second goal of the day, and seventh of the Premier League season, managing to keep up with Nunez's lightning sprint on the counter to steer the ball into the net.

Salah has now scored or assisted in each of his last 13 Premier League games at Anfield and doesn’t seem close to stopping anytime soon.

2) Our Captain, Virg

Virgil Van Dijk, ProShots

Virgil van Dijk is back to his best, and he has been for some time.

The Liverpool and Netherlands captain was absolutely faultless today, up against an aerial striker in Dominic Calvert-Lewin.

Van Dijk’s statistics from Saturday’s win speak for themselves: 94 passes (the most on the pitch), 114 touches, five clearances and ten recoveries.

The 32-year-old also won ten of his 15 aerial duels, as well as wining both his two ground duels and completing six of his nine attempted long balls.

Once again, Van Dijk is playing like one of the best centre-backs in the world, and if he stays fit throughout the whole campaign, then who knows where Liverpool can finish this season.

3) Elliott from the bench, again

Not for the first time this season, Harvey Elliott impressed from the bench, after his introduction in the 62nd minute on Saturday.

After captaining the England Under-21 side for the first time, it was no surprise to see the 20-year-old return to his club with a bit of extra confidence – every touch seemed effortless for the midfielder who finished the game with a 100% pass completion rate.

Elliott’s substitution was key for Liverpool as they struggled to break down Everton's block, and the youngster's ability to switch the play from left to right for the Reds was crucial in the lead-up to the opener.

Elliott had a tough time at Brighton in Liverpool’s last game before the international break and was replaced at half-time, but as shown this weekend, he has a huge role to play this season, despite the wealth of new midfield options.

4) Lucky Konate?

There should be no complaints over Young’s red card.

Both the Everton veteran's fouls were simple yellow card decisions for Craig Pawson, who had no other option than to send the full back packing.

Ibrahima Konate received his own yellow card in the 50th minute after deliberately taking Amadou Onana down as he looked to counter.

Fifteen minutes later, substitute Beto span away from the Frenchmen who brought the Everton man down, leading to a wave of complaints from Sean Dyche and his coaching staff.

Referee Pawson shook his head straight away, refusing to give in to the Everton calls, and Konate may have deemed himself a lucky boy to get away with a second caution.

Two minutes later, Konate was substituted for Joel Matip, as Klopp decided to cash out on the defender's luck.

5) What 12:30 curse?

Liverpool fans have come to loathe the 12:30pm kick offs in the last few years, having failed to win any of their six encounters in that time slot during the 2022/23 season.

Losses to the likes of Nottingham Forest, Bournemouth and Manchester City will certainly bring back horrid memories for all, but this season the ‘curse’ may be over.

A 3-1 win over Wolves in mid-September was Liverpool’s first midday win in over a year, and they found all three points today as well.

Proof of the curse's demise may come next month when the Reds face Manchester City at lunchtime post international break...

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