Sensational Salah strikes again
SOUTHAMPTON, England (AP):
Mohamed Salah and Roberto Firmino set each other up for goals in Liverpool's 2-0 win at Southampton in the Premier League as Virgil van Dijk made a triumphant return at St Mary's stadium yesterday.
On an afternoon when van Dijk shrugged off the jeers of his former club's home fans in an assured display in defence, Salah and Firmino excelled at the other end of the pitch to push Liverpool into third place and within two points of second-placed Manchester United.
Firmino slotted home a pass from Salah to give Liverpool a sixth-minute lead, and the pair combined again to make it 2-0 in the 42nd, this time Salah running onto his teammate's flick to score with an emphatic finish.
With 22 goals in his first season for Liverpool, Salah is only one behind Harry Kane in the race to become top scorer in the Premier League with 11 games left.
BOOED BY FANS
Van Dijk was booed on his every touch on his first return to St Mary's following his big money move to Liverpool in late December. The Dutchman predicted he would be a target of Southampton fans, and was seen laughing to himself after hearing the first round of jeers.
Salah set up Firmino's goal after capitalising on Southampton centre back Wesley Hoedt's miskick, running through and flicking a pass inside. Firmino met it with a first-time shot with his left foot that found the bottom corner.
Firmino returned the favour with an even defter pass at the edge of the area that pierced the Southampton defence. Salah didn't need an extra touch, either, before curling a finish into the corner from a central position.