Liverpool 0-1 Chelsea: result, summary, goal
Liverpool vs Chelsea: as it happened
by Martyn Herman
Chelsea reclaimed their place in the Premier League's top four as Mason Mount's superb first-half goal earned them an impressive 1-0 victory at champions Liverpool on Thursday.
Mount cut in to curl a low shot past Liverpool keeper Alisson in the 42nd minute, after Timo Werner had had a goal disallowed, to give Chelsea a deserved halftime lead. Thomas Tuchel's side then showed great defensive discipline to stand firm in the second period as Liverpool improved.
Liverpool, who substituted a disgruntled Mohamed Salah in the second half, struggled to carve out clear chances as they slipped to a club-record fifth successive home league defeat, having gone unbeaten in their previous 68 games at Anfield.
Chelsea, still unbeaten since Tuchel replaced Frank Lampard in January, have 47 points from 27 games, one more than Everton who had briefly gone fourth by beating West Bromwich Albion. Liverpool's title defence is in tatters and Juergen Klopp's side have slumped to seventh spot with 43 points from 27 games.
Peep, peep, peep! It's all over. Chelsea record their first win over Liverpool at Anfield since 2014. Liverpool are consigned to their fifth straight defeat at home.
Liverpool have three minutes to salvage something as Chelsea make another change, with Havertz coming on for Werner.
Mané and Kovacic exchange words after the latter hits the ball of the former's head as he fell to the ground following a challenge by Jorginho. That was nasty and unnecessary from Kovacic and Mané has every right to be angry.
And it finally comes! Liverpool's first shot on target comes through the head of Wijnaldum, who gets some power behind the header from a Alexander-Arnold cross from the left. But it's straight at Mendy.
We've past the 80 mark and Liverpool still without a shot on target. It's been a pretty subdued last 15 minutes.
Tuchel follows suit, bringing on Kovacic for goalscorer Mason Mount.
Klopp makes a third change as Milner comes on for Thiago.
Chance Chelsea! As Mount slots a ball into the path of Werner, who has to try a shot from an awkward angle on the left inside the box. He does well to hit the target but Alisson does equally well to save.
A defeat today will be Liverpool's 8 this season after 27 games played. To put that in perspective, they only lost a total of 9 games in the three seasons prior.
Robertson takes the corner kick for Liverpool on the left, but Mendy comes to collect the cross. Liverpool have still not had one shot on target as we approach 70 minutes.
And that free-kick will be Ziyech's last action of the game as he makes way for Christian Pulisic.
Ziyech whips in a decent delivery from the free-kick set piece on the left, but Liverpool do well to clear the danger.
Two changes for Liverpool: Premier League top scorer Salah is off, as is Jones. Jota and Oxlade Chamberlian come on as Klopp looks to change things up.
Liverpool can only shoot from distance again this time through Alexander-Arnold. But again the shot is blocked down.
Liverpool really struggling to breakdown Chelsea. The home side have had just three shots on goal - zero on target - to Chelsea's 10.
Alisson with two great saves to deny Chelsea!
The Brazilian keeper saves too close-range shots in quick succession to deny Chelsea a second goal.
Liverpool shouting for a penalty as Kante accidentally handles the ball in the box. He was standing right in front of Firmino as the Brazilian tried a cross from the right and could not do much about his arm being in the way of the ball's path. The ref waves away Liverpool's claims.
Second half underway!
Liverpool kick off the second 45 trailing 1-0 to Chelsea.
Liverpool have not won at Anfield since December 16th. If they lose to Chelsea today, it will be the first time in history that the club has lost five consecutive league games at Anfield.
Ref signals half-time!
Chelsea lead 1-0 as the teams head to the dressing rooms. Chelsea have had the better of the chances as well as an earlier Werner goal disallowed for a marginal offside. However there were no doubts about Mount's goal minutes ago. That was the young Englishman's fifth league goal of the season.
GOAL CHELSEA! MOUNT WITH A ROCKET!
Mount recieves the ball on left edge of the box, cuts back inside Fabinho and launches a shot with his right boot towards the right corner from close to 18 yards out. Lovely finish from the young Chelsea forward and The Blues lead 1-0 at Anfield.
TV cameras turn to King Kenny Dalglish, who is attendance at Anfield on the occassion of his 70th birthday.
Chelsea's Mason Mount tries a volley from the edge of box, but he gets his foot too far under the ball and it flies way over the bar.
35 minutes gone here with possession at 52%-48% to Liverpool, who have had two shots (0 on target) to Chelsea's 4 shots (two on target).
Salah picks out the run of Mané with a lobbed pass towards the box. But the Senegal striker scuffs his first-time shot.
Chelsea have goal ruled out by VAR
A ball comes over the top again allowing Werner to chase. Alisson comes out in a bid to collect but Werner knocks it over him to tap the ball in. However, the goal won't stand as VAR has ruled it out for a Werner offside.
Azpilicueta lets fly from distance for Chelsea, but the ball sails well over.
Werner again, this time one-on-one with Alisson as the ball bounces over the heads of the Liverpool defenders. But the awkward bounce also makes it difficult for the German to connect well with the shot and the ball lands in the hands of Alisson.
Chilwell plays a long ball towards Werner on the edge of the box. The German's first touch is sublime before he drives a shot towards the top corner. But it's just wide and over.
First shot comes for Liverpool as Salah passes to Robertson around the edge of the box. The Scot shots low and towards the far post but it's off target.
Salah chases a high ball over the top but he's beaten to it by Chelsea keeper Mendy, who gets his first touch of the game with that clearance.
A lot of action down the right here in these opening minutes. Neither side has yet to pose any danger.
The ref signals the start of the game as Chelsea kick off.
The teams are on the field and ready to go. A minute's remembrance being held for Liverpool legend Ian St. John, who passed away this week.
Liverpool get warmed up ahead of kick off at Anfield, where the game gets underway in five minutes...
Spurs have just beaten Fulham
One of tonight's other games has just finished, with Tottenham beating Fulham 1-0 at Craven Cottage. Mourinho's side are now one point behind seventh-placed Liverpool with the same number of games played (26). I win tonight for Liverpool would put them back into the top four, overtaking local rivals Everton by the margin of goal difference.
Klopp on Liverpool's injury crisis
"Most of the problems are as a result of the injury situation," he told Sky Sports ahead of tonight's match. "This year we have faced completely new problems. I have never in my life - and I have been doing the job for 20 years - had to change the last line every week.
"I am a much better manager this season than I was before because usually you are not having to think about these things, but now I am having to think about them constantly.
"We had a situation on Friday night. We trained all week, or the few days that we had to train, with one specific line-up and then overnight we had to change it completely.
"That is another big thing to do that is common in football but we have had it plenty of times.
"People might say that is an excuse. I could not care less, to be honest. We do not use it as an excuse but if you ask me the question then it is the explanation for why things changed.
Chelsea can match Man City standard, says Tuchel
Tuchel is confident Chelsea can match the standard set by City and Liverpool next term.
"If you read these numbers out loud then it seems not," Tuchel said ahead of Thursday's showdown with Liverpool. "But we should not limit our thoughts. We should try and not prepare for excuses.
"The amount of points shows how big the gap is. But it has to be the ambition to close it as fast as possible.
"It's a thin line between the argument and giving already an excuse to myself and the players. I don't want to do that. It's not my nature and you can only push yourself to the limit if you don't accept it from the beginning.
"Will we close the gap to City this season? No. But next season on we start with zero points. City were in trouble this season and nobody took advantage. It's proven in sports that you can do an extraordinary step, improve staff and grow if you catch the momentum.
"Now we are challenging for top four, which was a big task when we stepped in, and from next year we will challenge for all titles."
Liverpool vs Chelsea: Head-to-Head
Courtesy of SofaScrore
Klopp and Tuchel take familiar paths to Premier League showdown
"Of course we have a certain history…but we don't know each other as well as everybody thinks."
So said Thomas Tuchel during a glowing assessment of his German compatriot Jurgen Klopp, not long after replacing club legend Frank Lampard in the Chelsea dugout in January.
You could be forgiven, though, for thinking there is a much stronger bond between two men from the same country, whose paths from young heavy-metal upstarts to coaching heavyweights have taken eerily similar paths.
There are striking facets in each man's style of play too. The high intensity pressing, the devastating speed of the counter-attack, the fluidity of the forwards.
Now, whether you are a believer in fate or coincidence, the two are set to battle in the Premier League for the first time
Chelsea starting XI:
Mendy, Azpilicueta, Christensen, Rudiger, James, Jorginho, Kante, Chilwell, Ziyech, Mount, Werner.
Liverpool starting XI:
Indeed Becker and Fabinho return to the starting line-up.
Liverpool XI: Alisson, Alexander-Arnold, Kabak, Fabinho, Robertson, Wijnaldum, Jones, Thiago, Mane, Salah, Firmino
Becker and Fabinho are back for Liverpool
Alisson Becker is expected to return for this match following the tragic death of his father in a swimming accident in Brazil last week, while Fabinho could be back also.
Diogo Jota, who missed the Sheffield United match, seems to be fit after suffering a knee injury that has kept him out since December, but he’s not expected to feature from the start.
Jurgen Klopp won’t be able to call upon Jordan Henderson, Joe Gomez, Virgil van Dijk, Joel Matip and Caoimhin Kelleher, who remain sidelined for the hosts.
The Tuchel touch
Chelsea haven't lost since the arrival of Thomas Tuchel, with six victories and three draws, and Blues conceding just two goals. However, they haven’t been that productive up front, as they have scored just 10 goals in those last nine games.
Liverpool on verge of grim historic milestone
If Liverpool lose to Chelsea, it will become the first time in their entire history that the Reds have suffered five consecutive home defeats. Although it's fair to say that the Pool's home farm has been largely affected by the fact that their fans have not been in the stadium. Still, it will be a record Klopp will be keen to avoid against Tuchel's side.
Hello and welcome
Hello and welcome as we begin our live coverage of Thursday's hotly anticipate clash between seventh-placed Liverpool and fifth-placed Chelsea. Chelsea have not won at Anfield since 2014 but considering Klopp's men have lost their last four consecutive home games, this could be Chelsea's best chance to record a victory there in seven years.