Liverpool go 22 points clear at top, United held on Fernandes debut

Liverpool go 22 points clear at top, United held on Fernandes debut

The Merseyside club's record-breaking start to the season has now seen them move within touching distance of a maiden Premier League title, and Klopp admits his side's consistency is like nothing he has ever seen before. Liverpool went straight up the other end to take the lead through Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain. "In the second half we weren't so fluid and they created some good chances themselves", Chelsea boss Frank Lampard told BBC Sport after the match.

The league leaders then doubled their advantage on the hour through Jordan Henderson's close-range effort.

Having completed his move from Sporting Lisbon on Thursday, in a deal worth an initial $61.2 million (£47 million), Fernandes went straight into the starting line-up at Old Trafford.

He kept Rui Patricio on his toes with a series of long-range drives, one of which the Wolves goalkeeper almost spilt into his own net.

It was also a ninth clean sheet in the last 10 league games for Liverpool, which has conceded only 15 goals - eight fewer than the next most obdurate team, Sheffield United.

"When we are rolling, it's hard to stop", said manager Jurgen Klopp, who said he had never witnessed anything quite like the consistency of excellence being displayed by his team.

"The attitude and the mentality of these boys made it again possible that we could win this game", said Klopp. "Energy levels are down and we need a break".

United looked lacklustre during their goalless draw against Wolverhampton, whereas Chelsea were engaged in an entertaining game against Leicester City with both teams hitting the net twice.

Liverpool U23 coach Neil Critchley celebrates after the match
Liverpool U23 coach Neil Critchley celebrates after the match

Fourth-placed Chelsea sits five points clear of fifth-placed Sheffield United and six ahead of United and Wolves.

Everton, which also finished with 10 men, came from two goals down to win 3-2 at Watford thanks to Theo Walcott's last-minute goal.

"Not many people gave us the top four slot and I understand why, and it's probably the same now", said Lampard.

Center back Antonio Rudiger scored two headers from set pieces for Chelsea, first putting the visitors in the lead in the 46th and then equalising in the 71st.

West Ham United dropped into the bottom three after Brighton & Hove Albion recovered from 3-1 down to earn a 3-3 draw, while Aston Villa are teetering above the drop zone after a 2-1 defeat at Bournemouth, who played most of the second half a man down.

A freaky Vicente Guaita own-goal gifted Sheffield United a 1-0 victory against Crystal Palace, ending the Blades' winless away run in the Premier League.

Watford failed to even get a point after going 2-0 up on Everton through Adam Masina and Roberto Pereyra.

Bournemouth climbed out of the relegation zone by beating fellow struggler Aston Villa 2-1, despite playing nearly the whole of the second half with 10 men.

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