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Dublin: 11 °C Friday 21 September, 2018

Superb Salah brace steals the show as Liverpool turn up pressure on Bilic and West Ham

Liverpool go sixth in the Premier League as West Ham remain just one point above the relegation zone.

Britain Soccer Premier League Mohamed Salah scored a brace during Saturday's win at the London Stadium. Source: Kirsty Wigglesworth

LIVERPOOL MOVED UP to sixth in the Premier League on Saturday evening as a 4-1 defeat of West Ham at the London Stadium heaped further woe on an already under-fire Slaven Bilic.

A stadium half-empty had seen enough long before the full-time whistle, with the remaining Hammers supporters casting frustrated boos onto the pitch where a desolate set of West Ham players trooped off deflated and defeated after a disastrous display.

Mohamed Salah gave Liverpool the lead after 21 minutes before adding a second after the break. The Egyptian winger has now scored 12 goals in all competitions this season and could easily have bagged a hat-trick.

Joel Matip doubled Liverpool’s lead just three minutes after taking the lead following Salah’s opener. A routine corner kick was not dealt with following a fine stop at the first attempt by Joe Hart, however Matip was on hand to tap the second effort into an empty net.

Jurgen Klopp’s side came into Saturday’s game on the back of successive 3-0 wins against Huddersfield and Maribor in the Champions League on Wednesday. After taking a 2-0 lead they were buoyed after the break and went in search of more.

West Ham United v Liverpool - Premier League - London Stadium Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain scored on his first Premier League start for Liverpool. Source: John Walton

West Ham didn’t give up hope, however. Manuel Lazini’s goal after 55 minutes — a fine solo effort where he firstly took down a cross towards the back post before dinking it over Simon Mignolet — seemed like sparking a fightback.

But hope of grabbing a point was dashed just a minute later as Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain made it 3-1 with a well-taken finish to grab a goal on his first Premier League start for his new club.

Salah wrapped up the points with 15 minutes to go. He grabbed his second with the goal of the night — a brilliantly executed strike inside the penalty area which left goalkeeper Hart scrambling and unable to keep the powerful low drive out.

Klopp’s side were relentless in the final exchanges and could easily have added two or three more as supporters continued to pour out of the London Stadium. West Ham now drop into 17th place in the table with a sixth defeat in 11 games, as Liverpool enter the top six.

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Aaron Gallagher

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