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PREMIER LEAGUE

Liverpool finish second despite victory over Wolves

Sadio Mané's double earned a 2-0 Liverpool win at Anfield, but Man City's victory in Brighton denied the Reds the title.

Update:
LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - MAY 12: A dejected Trent Alexander-Arnold of Liverpool during the Premier League match between Liverpool FC and Wolverhampton Wanderers at Anfield on May 12, 2019 in Liverpool, United Kingdom. (Photo by Robbie Jay Barratt - AMA/Getty
Robbie Jay Barratt - AMAGetty Images

Liverpool 2-0 Wolves: match report

Liverpool's 29-year wait for a league title will continue after they had to settle for runners-up spot behind Manchester City despite Sadio Mane scoring twice in a 2-0 win over Wolverhampton Wanderers on the final day of the Premier League season.

The victory for Juergen Klopp's side on Sunday became irrelevant to the title outcome as City won 4-1 at Brighton & Hove Albion to ensure their second straight league crown.

It will be hard to stomach for Liverpool after such an excellent campaign but Klopp's men, beaten just once in the Premier League this season, finished one point behind City with 97, a record total for a team coming runners-up.

The midweek drama of Liverpool's 4-0 win over Barcelona, ensuring a place in the Champions League final on June 1 against Tottenham Hotspur, removed much of the sense of disappointment from the day which ended with a lap of honour from the Liverpool players and their families.

But the day began with the possibility that a first title since 1990 could be secured if a remarkable week of football ended with another upset, this time at Brighton.

Liverpool certainly played like they believed that could happen, especially when Mane put Liverpool ahead in the 17th minute, meeting a low cross from Trent Alexander-Arnold and sweeping home from close range.

News of Brighton taking the lead against City, brought inevitable roars from the crowd and even with Pep Guardiola's side quickly replying, for 21 minutes until City got in front, Liverpool were temporarily in the top spot.

But as news of their rivals' progress at Brighton filtered through, Liverpool's intensity gradually faded.

Wolves keeper Rui Patricio was alert to keep out a 20-metre blast from left-back Andy Robertson and Mohamed Salah volleyed over the bar from the edge of the area.

But after the break, it was the visitors who looked the more likely to add to the scoring, with Matt Doherty hitting the bar and, in the 69th minute, Liverpool goalkeeper Alisson having to react quickly to foil Diogo Jota after a ball over the top

Liverpool eventually made sure of the win when Mane added his second in the 81st minute, again assisted by Alexander-Arnold whose deep cross was nodded home by the Senegalese at the back post.

Liverpool strikers Salah and Mane both ended the season on 22 goals, sharing the 'Golden Boot' award with Arsenal's Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.

Liverpool 2-0 Wolves live online: as it happened

Liverpool vs Wolves live online: preview

Lightening never strikes twice in the same place but with this Liverpool team under Jurgen Klopp and their ability to make it rain goals, nothing can be completely ruled out. On Tuesday night, Anfield witnessed what many say was their best night in Europe ever after they trounced Barcelona so convincingly that they have forced the Spanish club into an existential crisis. Four goals was exactly what they needed on that night but just one will do against Wolves on Sunday in the final game of the season. They will be, however, relying on goals, or a lack of them, elsewhere to clinch their first Premier League title ever and their first league title in 29 years. Manchester City travel south to Brighton where they will be hoping and needing Chris Hughton's side to take something from the game.

Mohamed Salah and Roberto Firmino should return to boost Liverpool's chances after missing the heroic comeback midweek. Divock Origi and Xherdan Shaqiri replaced them on that occasion but the pair will be rested and ready to carry Liverpool's slender Premier League hopes on their back. Andy Robertson is considering questionable after suffering an ankle injury against Barcelona when he had to be removed at half-time. Naby Keita is out after injuring himself in the first leg of the Barcelona tie as his season is over.

Wolves have nothing to play for aside from pride and the chance to play a part in the proceedings. They are sitting seventh with not chance of moving up or down the table after accumuating 57 points on their return to the Premier League. They have no injury concerns but Nuno Espirito Santo could opt to give younger players the chance to experience the hustle and bustle of the league ahead of next season.

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