Mohamed Salah ended his goal drought with a brilliant solo goal as Liverpool came from behind to beat Southampton at St Mary’s and return to the top of the Premier League.
Jurgen Klopp’s side were in danger of getting distanced from title rivals Manchester City with the score level at 1-1 with 10 minutes remaining, before Salah made his run to bring the Reds back into the competition quiet firmly.
The Egyptian superstar ran half the length of the pitch before firing past Angus Gunn with his left foot to score his record breaking 50th goal for Liverpool.
Substitute Jordan Henderson sealed a breathtaking Liverpool victory late on with a close-range finish.
Shane Long had handed Saints an early lead with a composed strike from inside the area but Naby Keita headed the visitors level with his first goal for the club before the break.
The result sees the Reds leapfrog Manchester City yet again – the 25th time the lead has changed hands this season.
Liverpool have a two-point gap at the top, although defending champions City have a game in hand with six matches left to play.
Southampton remain in 16th place, just five points above the relegation zone.
Klopp was relieved with the good result that kept his side in contention for the Premier League title.
“We come here and we know Southampton are a really different side since Ralph was in. Everybody expects, and we need, three points. We knew how difficult that is. The set-up was 5-4-1, that means you play against nine. Our problem was we didn’t push up high enough in the last line; so we let Fabinho [be] around Long or Redmond instead of the two centre-halves.
You saw each ball we played into the box and couldn’t finish it off was a [Southampton] counter-attack because they were then in better positions, and that made life a bit uncomfortable.” The German said in his post match press conference.
“They scored that goal, deserved, but after we adjusted or adapted a little bit to the situation, we were there – we won balls back, could play in better spaces, had our moments, had our chances and scored a goal. That’s really important and means ‘game on’ again.” The former Borussia Dortmund boss said.
“Second half, they started again pretty lively, then I think they felt the intensity of the first half a little bit. We could bring on two very motivated and lively boys [Henderson and James Milner], I would say, and it helped a lot. They pushed the whole team, they do it in the dressing room and do it on the pitch. It was really good to see the influence of the two.
And then we scored these two world-class goals. We won the ball and a counter-attack; you see 1-1 against Southampton and you score both goals from counter-attacks.”
In the next match Liverpool host FC Porto in the first leg of their Champions League quarter-final on Tuesday, 9 April, while Southampton are back at St Mary’s to face Wolves in the Premier League on Saturday, 13 April.