Report

Bradley the hero as Liverpool thump Chelsea to restore lead at top

31 Jan 2024
Conor Bradley Liverpool

Twenty-year-old right-back involved in three goals in 4-1 Anfield win in which Darwin Nunez made history

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Match report: Liverpool 4 Chelsea 1

Conor Bradley scored one goal and created two more as Liverpool thumped Chelsea 4-1 at Anfield to restore their five-point lead at the top of the table in the Reds' first Premier League match since manager Jurgen Klopp announced his decision to leave at the end of the season.

It was a night to remember for 20-year-old Bradley, who became the youngest Liverpool player to assist two goals in a Premier League match since Trent Alexander-Arnold did so at the same age in 2019.

Diogo Jota, Dominik Szoboszlai and Luis Diaz also scored, and Liverpool could have had even more goals, with Darwin Nunez becoming the first player in history to hit the woodwork four times in a Premier League match. 

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How the match unfolded

Liverpool took the lead in the 23rd minute, when Jota collected a pass from Bradley, making his home Premier League debut with Alexander-Arnold watching on from the bench, and weaved beyond two Chelsea defenders to score.

Bradley doubled the lead six minutes before half-time with a fantastic low finish across goal and into the far corner. 

Conor Bradley goal

Liverpool were then awarded a penalty on the stroke of half-time when Benoit Badiashile fouled Jota, but despite sending goalkeeper Djordje Petrovic the wrong way, Nunez hit a post.

Mauricio Pochettino made three substitutions and two of those substitutes combined early on in the second half, Malo Gusto crossing low for Mykhailo Mudryk, who appeared to have the simple task of tapping in, but somehow fired over.

Liverpool made it 3-0 on 65 minutes thanks to more terrific play from Bradley, who drilled an inviting cross into the box that was headed in by Szoboszlai.

Six minutes later, Chelsea pulled a goal back through substitute Christopher Nkunku, who did well to get away from Virgil van Dijk before finding the bottom corner.

But Liverpool kept streaming forward, and after Nunez hit the woodwork for a fourth time, the Uruguayan crossed for Diaz to make it 4-1 and seal Klopp's 200th Premier League victory as a manager.

The win means Liverpool retain their lead at the top of the table that was temporarily cut to just two points following Manchester City's win over Burnley earlier on Wednesday night

Chelsea drop to 10th place with 31 points, and are as many points off 17th-placed Luton as they are fourth-placed Spurs.

Premier League

Position Pos Club Played Pl GD Points Pts
1 Man City MCI 32 +44 73
2 Arsenal ARS 32 +49 71
3 Liverpool LIV 32 +41 71
4 Aston Villa AVL 33 +19 63
5 Spurs TOT 32 +16 60

Premier League

Position Pos Club Played Pl GD Points Pts
6 Newcastle NEW 32 +17 50
7 Man Utd MUN 32 -1 50
8 West Ham WHU 33 -6 48
9 Chelsea CHE 31 +9 47
10 Brighton BHA 32 +2 44
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Next five Premier League fixtures
Key facts

This victory for Liverpool ended their run of eight games without a win and seven consecutive draws against Chelsea in all competitions, beating them for the first time since September 2020.

No Premier League team has lost more away games in all competitions since the start of last season than Chelsea (22), with the Blues now losing six of their last seven on the road (W1).

Liverpool’s 28 shots tonight is the joint-most on record (since 2003-04) any side has had in a Premier League match against Chelsea, while their 13 shots on target is the most the Blues have faced in a league match in that time.

This was Liverpool’s biggest margin of victory in a Premier League game against Chelsea since May 2012, when they beat the Blues 4-1 at Anfield under Kenny Dalglish.

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