Liverpool forward Mohamed Salah kept up his scoring streak against Watford with a brace as the Premier League leaders sealed a 2-0 victory over the bottom club at Anfield on Saturday.
The win sees Liverpool widen the gap with the chasing pack – including second-placed Leicester City, who drew with Norwich City later in the day.
Watford’s fourth defeat in five games left new manager Nigel Pearson’s side rooted to the bottom of the table.
Liverpool took the lead with a typically lethal counter-attack in the 38th minute as Sadio Mane collected the ball on the left and released Salah, who sprinted towards goal before cutting in and curling a shot home with his right foot.
Mane thought that he had doubled the lead five minutes after the break but the Video Assistant Referee (VAR) showed he was marginally offside when nodding the ball in from Xherdan Shaqiri’s whipped cross.
Salah then scored his eighth league goal against Watford in five matches with a brilliant back-heeled effort in added time to secure the three points for Jurgen Klopp’s side.
The visitors had earlier missed the chance to go ahead when Abdoulaye Doucoure mishit his shot after Etienne Capoue escaped the offside trap to set him up.
Watford had scored only nine goals in the league coming into this game, and the reason for that became evident when poor finishing cost them yet again as an unchallenged Ismaila Sarr scuffed his shot after goalkeeper Alisson Becker parried Gerard Deulofeu’s cross.
Norwich hold Leicester to surprise 1-1 draw
Norwich City boosted their hopes of avoiding relegation from the Premier League after a spirited performance saw them hold high-flying Leicester City to a pulsating 1-1 draw on Saturday.
The result snapped Leicester’s eight-match winning streak, leaving them second in the table on 39 points from 17 games, 10 behind runaway leaders Liverpool who marched on with a 2-0 home win over Watford in the lunchtime kick-off.
Teemu Pukki gave Watford a 25th minute lead with a clinical finish before visiting keeper Tim Krul scored an own goal in the 37th, failing to clear a Jamie Vardy header as the league’s top scorer got on the end of a James Maddison corner.
Bournemouth stun Chelsea 1-0 away
Defiant Bournemouth stole all three points with a late goal from Dan Gosling at Chelsea in the Premier League on Saturday, ending a five-match losing streak with a 1-0 win.
Gosling looped his shot over goalkeeper Kepa Arrizabalaga’s head in the 84th minute, and defender Cesar Azpilicueta hooked it out, but after a lengthy wait for a VAR offside check referee Graham Scott awarded the goal.