Liverpool were handed their first defeat of the Premier League season after Aston Villa dismantled the champions in spectacular fashion. The Reds were hit for an astonishing seven goals after the Villains made easy work of picking them apart on home soil.
An Ollie Watkins hat-trick and a brace from captain Jack Grealish were just two highlights from the home side’s emphatic win. Whilst Liverpool were able to grab two of their goals back, it wasn’t even enough to deem them a consolation. They return to Merseyside suffering a huge blow to team morale, as well as becoming the first defending title-winning side to concede seven goals in 67 years.
The scoreline doesn’t flatter Aston Villa one bit. Amazingly, they held just 30% of the game’s possession at Villa Park and still managed to win more than comfortably. Dean Smith’s side could’ve bagged even more goals if they weren’t a little wasteful with some of their shots. According to Sofascore, Villa tested Adrian 11 times, making smart use of their time on the ball.
Whilst Jurgen Klopp will be seething with such a heavy defeat, one slight positive can be taken away is the performance of Mohamed Salah. The Egyptian has opened up his away goal account for the season after netting both of the Reds’ goals last night. As a player who struggled to find the back of the net on the road last campaign, he will at least be pleased to get underway early on.
Salah’s impressive totally tally of 19 goals for the 2019/20 season saw just four of them come from on the road (via Transfermarkt). As one of Liverpool’s key players, opposition sides did well to figure out his style of play and keep him quiet during his visits to their home grounds.
Golden Boot winner Jamie Vardy scored 11 of his 23 goals during away fixtures, something that may have spurred Salah on to be more clinical when away from home. He will hope to stay in this form as Liverpool take on bitter rivals and league leaders Everton at Goodison Park after the international break.