Brentford 1 – 4 Liverpool Premier League Man of the Match

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Brentford vs Liverpool: Salah’s Stellar Return Powers Reds to Victory

Salah’s Impactful Comeback

I wrote recently about how I was excited and eager to see what a rested Mohamed Salah would look like upon his return to the Liverpool team. After enduring a hamstring injury (it’s a pandemic) whilst representing his country at the African Cup of Nations, a decision between the player and his club was immediately taken to get him back on Merseyside as soon as possible, so that his rehabilitation could be undertaken by the expert hands within the AXA Training Centre. Two years ago, the Reds were also chasing an unprecedented quadruple of trophies, in a campaign where they lost their goal-scoring talisman for the duration of the 2022 AFCON. At the end of that tournament, Anfield welcomed back a fatigued and overplayed wide forward, who would struggle in the remaining months to find his previous form. This time, however, the jubilant Kop has welcomed an elite-level player who has enjoyed some form of mid-season holiday (in recuperation), thereby allowing him to return a rejuvenated and hungry superstar.

Key Performances and Injuries

I am trying not to be too dispirited by the first-half injuries endured by both Curtis Jones and then Diogo Jota (against Brentford today), as another win and a raft of strong performances engulfed the Brentford Community Stadium this afternoon. The dreaded lunchtime kick-off has suddenly become a welcome experience, as the Reds once again overcame any adversity to extend their lead at the top of the Premier League. Caoimhin Kelleher was very good and reactive in goal, Virgil dismissed the demons of last year to have a superb game against Thomas Frank’s team, Waturu Endō and Alexis Mac Allister were formidable in controlling the game state, whereas Ryan Gravenberch was energetic and productive in his hour on the pitch. Luis Díaz was an electric dribbling element that brought unpredictable moments, whereas Diogo Jota and Darwin combined wonderfully for that all-important first goal. Cody Gakpo came into his preferred central role and showed that he could take the weight in the impending absence of his Portuguese pal.

Salah’s Dominance

What shone brighter than anything else, however, was the electrifying and powerful display of Jürgen Klopp’s world-class number eleven. The record-breaking scorer scored a wonderful solo goal, before gifting his Argentina World Cup-winning teammate, Alexis Mac Allister, the perfect pass for a simple finish. Every time the 31-year-old received the ball, he looked unstoppable and everything and everyone around him immediately elevated to his level, as he continually instigated terror in his adversaries. Manchester City will remain the overwhelming force that will probably win this season’s title, though one man has returned to the side with a burning desire to gift his outgoing manager the ultimate leaving gift.

Your man of the match, Mohamed Salah.

Pre-match Prediction;
Brentford 1 – 2 Liverpool

Steven Smith

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