Talk about signing off 2016 with a bang. The party started early at Anfield as Kopites enjoyed the perfect end to a thrilling year.
At the final whistle Jurgen Klopp unleashed a flurry of fist pumps before racing on to the turf to embrace his triumphant players.
The Reds boss knew the significance of a cherished victory which underlined his side's Premier League title credentials.
Liverpool have played better and enjoyed more emphatic wins this season but none quite as crucial as this. When the stakes were high, they delivered to a man.
The message sent to Stamford Bridge was loud and clear: Liverpool are going nowhere. They are in this race for the duration.
In cutting Chelsea's lead at the top to six points, the Reds also delivered a telling blow to Manchester City's own hopes of glory.
Pep Guardiola may have swept the board at Barcelona and Bayern Munich but he won't enjoy that kind of domination in the Premier League.
The Spaniard was outfoxed by Klopp, whose tactical masterplan put one over his old foe and ensured Liverpool reached the halfway stage of the season in record-breaking shape.
Their tally of 43 points and their goal difference of plus 25 after 19 matches is their best in the Premier League era.
In any other year they would be looking down on the rest but Chelsea's run of 13 straight wins means that's not the case.
Liverpool can't concern themselves with events in West London, they just need to keep taking care of their own business so that when the Londoners stumble they're able to capitalise. The race is long.
This was a heavyweight contest which didn't live up to the hype but Kopites won't care a jot about that.
The Reds produced a first-half show of force during which they should have had more than Gini Wijnaldum's thumping header to show for their efforts.
The second half was very different. It was all about grit and determination as City rallied and the hosts had to weather the storm.
Defensively, Liverpool were outstanding. Centre-backs Ragnar Klavan and Dejan Lovren dealt expertly with everything thrown at them.
James Milner was Raheem Sterling's worst nightmare as the left-back produced a faultless performance against his old club.
City had 57 per cent possession but did precious little with it. Simon Mignolet didn't have a serious save to make all night.
Klopp sprung a surprise with his line-up as Emre Can was brought in at the expense of Divock Origi.
Adam Lallana started on the left of a front three with the tireless Roberto Firmino returned to the No 9 role where he did so much damage earlier in the campaign.
It was harsh on Origi, who had performed so well against Stoke, but it was a tactical tweak which worked a treat.
The inclusion of Can added more bite to Liverpool's midfield. The Germany international shone alongside captain Jordan Henderson as they outworked and outplayed City duo Yaya Toure and Fernandinho.
Can's presence gave Wijnaldum a licence to venture forward more than usual and the Dutchman made it count inside eight minutes.
Firmino sent Lallana scampering away down the left and his cross was inch perfect. Wijnaldum soared above Aleksandar Kolarov to power an unstoppable header beyond Claudio Bravo.
Anfield erupted. Wijnaldum deserved his hero status. He's been a massive hit since his summer move from Newcastle but much of his work has gone under the radar. This was a matchwinning contribution.
Once in front Liverpool went on to boss the opening 45 minutes.
Sergio Aguero sliced one effort wide after weaving into space but for the most part the returning City frontman was subdued.
Klavan passed the biggest test of his Reds career with flying colours. Booked early on for a foul on Aguero, the experienced Estonian had no room for error. He had to time his challenges to perfection and didn't disappoint.
Just as Liverpool have coped without Philippe Coutinho, they have also proved they can win without Joel Matip. They have strength in depth.
It proved to be another chastening return to Anfield for Sterling. His every touch was booed mercilessly.
A roar reverberated around the stadium when Milner got the better of him and it was a scenario which was repeated throughout. Sterling hardly got a kick.
The irony won't have been lost on the Liverpool vice-captain that here he was shining at left-back against the club he left 18 months ago because he craved a central midfield role.
But Milner is the ultimate team man and the way in which he has adjusted and flourished in the backline is testament to his professionalism.
Liverpool were first to everything and should have added to their account before the interval.
Bravo was lucky to get away with a woeful punch from Milner's free-kick, while Wijnaldum lashed a left-footer high and wide after being teed up by Lallana.
Just before the half-hour mark Milner produced a classy lofted pass to release Firmino but the Brazilian's touch let him down. Can curled narrowly wide as City continued to chase shadows.
Liverpool's confidence was epitomised by the sight of Mignolet racing out of his box and calming clipping the ball over Aguero.
When the relentless pressing of Lallana and Firmino forced John Stones to play it back to Bravo, Anfield voiced its approval.
The pace of the game was simply too much for Toure, who looked like a pensioner in this kind of company.
Liverpool were all over the Ivorian and when he coughed up possession just before the break they should have made him pay. Frustratingly, Firmino delayed the pass and Lallana had strayed offside.
City had to improve in the second half and they did. Guardiola's side were given a helping hand by some sloppy mistakes. It was all too frenetic.
Anxiety levels in the stands continued to rise as City enjoyed a spell of sustained pressure. Aguero's strike was easy for Mignolet before David Silva drilled just wide. When Wijnaldum cleared straight to De Bruyne, the nerves were jangling still further.
Liverpool weren't helped by the loss of Henderson, who was hampered by pain in his heel. The Reds skipper was replaced by Origi shortly after the hour mark.
As City gambled in search of an equaliser, the Reds should have killed them off on the counter-attack. Mane infuriatingly took the wrong option when he ignored the claims of Origi to his right.
Klopp's men were in need of a lift late on as fatigue set in and all four sides of Anfield provided it by cranking up the decibel levels to help see them home.
Liverpool got what they deserved. They enter 2017 in rude health.
Man of the match: James Milner. Outstanding against his former club. Ensured it was a miserable night for Raheem Sterling.
Source: Liverpool Echo
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