5 talking points from Liverpool's 4-2 victory against Newcastle

Liverpool kicked 2024 off with a 4-2 victory over Newcastle United on Monday evening, the Reds moving three points clear at the top of the table.

The Reds should have taken the lead after 23 minutes at Anfield, awarded a penalty for Sven Botman's trip on Luis Diaz in the penalty area.

Unfortunately, Mohamed Salah slammed his spot kick straight at Martin Dubravka, with Trent Alexander-Arnold unable to convert the rebound.

The Egyptian did make amends for his earlier miss by converting a tap-in shortly after half-time, but Alexander Isak swiftly equalised for the visiting Magpies.

Fortunately, Curtis Jones and Cody Gakpo were on hand to put Liverpool back in front with just over a quarter-of-an-hour remaining, although Botman offered Newcastle a lifeline with eight minutes to play.

Diogo Jota was tripped by Dubravka with just five minutes to go, Salah making no mistake second time round from the spot.

In the end, Liverpool made life needlessly complicated at Anfield, but it was an important three points for the Reds regardless.


Well, not for the first time in the past few seasons, Liverpool were left frustrated by Salah's inaccuracy from the spot in the first half at Anfield.

Despite being a supreme finisher, Salah has always had a few struggles from 12 yards. The Egyptian missed one against Bournemouth earlier this term, but was fortunate enough to rattle in the rebound.

He was offered no such luxury against Newcastle, his powerful strike comfortably rebuffed by Dubravka. As he does often, Salah hammered it down the middle, but his lack of precision proved costly.

However, with four minutes to play, Salah redeemed himself from the spot, calmly slotting into the bottom corner to finish the game off for Liverpool.

Salah has still missed four of his last ten Premier League penalties, a record that doesn't inspire great confidence.


The Colombian has had some justifiable criticism in recent weeks for his waning influence for Liverpool, but he was back to his manic best against Newcastle.

Diaz won the penalty that Salah failed to convert with some smart play in the box, while he was also influential in the build-up to the Reds' opener with a lovely pass for Darwin Nunez.

Most significantly, the winger looked willing to take on Tino Livramento, blitzing him on one occasion in the second half with a razor sharp turn.

It's worth remembering just how traumatic the past few months have been for Diaz, with fans all too quick to write players off after a subpar spell.

If Diaz can maintain the level he showed against Newcastle heading into 2024, it could be a very prosperous year for him and the Reds.


If the goalless draw with Manchester United was a frustrating watch, this was genuinely painful at times.

It may seem ridiculous to say given Liverpool scored four against Newcastle, but they still managed to miss an absolute hatful of chances at Anfield.

Liverpool had 34 shots, 15 shots on target and finished with an xG of 7.27 - the latter a Premier League record - with Salah also missing a spot kick to add to the tension.

Nunez was characteristically guilty of missing plenty of good opening against the Magpies, finishing the game with eight shots and an xG of 1.61 despite not finding the net.

Luckily, Liverpool's persistence paid off, but such wastefulness may prove costly moving forward.


The man who put Liverpool back in front after Isak's equaliser, Jones put in another commanding performance in central midfield.

Liverpool's No. 17 offers the Reds such great balance in the midfield and has found his goalscoring touch in recent weeks, making some positive late runs into the box.

It was not a difficult finish for the Scouser, but it was exactly where you want your midfield player to be in the final third.

Jones is slowly making himself an essential in Klopp's starting lineup.


Just as it looked like it was going to be one of those days for Liverpool, Klopp rung the changes.

Jota came on and set up Jones' goal, with Gakpo tapping home from the bench too. The former also won the penalty that Salah netted late on as Klopp got all his alterations bang on.

Alexis Mac Allister also returned to the team from the bench, helping dictate the tempo of the game in the closing stages and helping set up Jota for Liverpool's fourth.

In the end, Liverpool's squad depth proved a major difference at Anfield.

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