Conor Bradley produced a memorable display by scoring his first Liverpool goal and grabbing two assists as the Reds beat Chelsea to maintain their grip on first place in the Premier League.
Jurgen Klopp’s side went into this round of fixtures five points clear at the top and, with Arsenal and Manchester City winning their games against Nottingham Forest and Burnley respectively, the Anfield club needed to do likewise against the Blues.
Having beaten Bournemouth 4-0 in their previous league outing, they once again put in a confident and dominant display to sweep Chelsea aside.
Darwin Nunez twice hit the woodwork in the opening stages – and four times in total – before Diogo Jota showed great persistence to force his way through defenders to slot in from Bradley’s pass.
The 20-year-old Northern Ireland international, who has emerged as a very exciting talent at Liverpool this season, then got the goal his recent impressive displays have warranted as he raced into the box from the right before driving into the far corner.
Liverpool should have been 3-0 up at half-time but Nunez struck the post from the penalty spot after Jota was brought down.
Mykhailo Mudryk missed a glorious chance to halve the deficit after the break when he lashed high over the bar with just Alisson to beat.
Dominik Szoboszlai punished Chelsea for that miss as he got Liverpool’s third, heading home Bradley’s cross, and although Christopher Nkunku drove in a consolation for the visitors, Luis Diaz added a fourth late on with a close-range strike.
It was the perfect result for the Reds both in retaining their advantage at the top of the Premier League as well as boosting confidence before they face Chelsea again in the Carabao Cup final at Wembley on 25 February.