Match Review: Liverpool 1 – 0 West Ham

Liverpool needed moments of excellent defensive play to secure the three points in a game where West Ham was so impressive. Michail Antonio was a constant menace, upsetting the Reds’ center-backs with his strong show. West Ham was able to defend with vigor and then break with a magnificent intent. The Hammers’ success under David Moyes once again demonstrates that he has a great system in place, and they are deserving of a Champions League position this season.

Mohamed Salah had a fantastic chance to score early on, but Fabianski made a great save. Dominance and shots indicate the presence of a good read, and despite the general lack of control, West Ham was aggressive in their responses. Luis Diaz was entertaining to watch at times, and his ability to travel quickly was a risk that should have paid off. When Thiago isn’t on the field, the reds’ lack of imagination becomes clear.

After a cutting through ball by Alexander-Arnold, Sadio Mane completed his transition to the central attacking role and scored a well-taken goal. The reds should have gone on from there, but they were unable to strike the target consistently, and they were forced to work hard for their victory. Virgil was not at his imperious best, and Liverpool’s midfield was perhaps their best area, at least as a team. At Anfield, the Reds’ fullbacks were the finest defensive assets, with Robertson, in particular, being called upon on two occasions to prevent clear-cut chances.

Liverpool was rattled, and their ability to hold on, especially against such a formidable opponent, should be commended. West Ham took the game to the Reds and should be proud of the effort they put up without Declan Rice. Liverpool’s winning streak continues, and they’ll be relieved to hear the final whistle.

The focus for the Reds now shifts to Tuesday, when they will need to put up another great defensive performance against Inter. With Jurgen Klopp’s season shaping up beautifully, he’ll need Thiago Alcantara back as soon as possible to keep close games under control. The most important thing is to win, and the manager will undoubtedly stress the fact that Liverpool might have easily dropped points here.

With Brighton following Inter, they will be relieved to see the backs of West Ham this season, a team whose boss should be a front-runner for the manager of the year once again.

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