Liverpool returned to the top of the Premier League with an assertive 3-1 victory over Manchester United at Anfield.

Sadio Mane’s expertly-taken opening goal gave the Reds a deserved lead midway through the first half on Sunday, but Jesse Lingard equalised against the run of play to ensure the teams went in level at the interval.

A dominant second-half display from Jürgen Klopp’s team was rewarded, though, with Xherdan Shaqiri scoring twice after coming off the bench to seal an impressive win.

Here are five talking points on Sunday’s action…

Super-sub Shaq

Shaqiri had been on the pitch for just 144 seconds before he tipped the balance of the match decisively in Liverpool’s favour with his first goal.

And it took just another seven minutes for the Swiss to seal an invaluable victory with his second.

Sure, there was a touch of fortune about both strikes - with his shots taking deflections off Ashley Young and Eric Bailly before finding the Kop-end net - but could anyone of a Liverpudlian persuasion care less about that?

The home fans at Anfield certainly didn’t, with Shaqiri’s second goal - his fifth for the club - greeted by a celebratory chorus of ‘Xherdan Shaqiri!’.

Uncharted territory

Never before had a Liverpool team recorded a sequence of 18 successive Premier League matches without defeat.

Before Sunday, that was.

A run that began on the final day of last season, when Brighton and Hove Albion were dispatched 4-0, was extended beyond the previous high watermark set by Rafa Benitez’s Reds between March and October 2008.

Those 18 outings have featured 15 victories, 41 goals scored and just seven conceded.

Formidable form from the Premier League leaders.

Fabulous Fabinho

Speaking ahead of his first taste of this fixture, Fabinho noted: “When you sign for Liverpool, you have these types of games in mind.”

The Brazil international was clearly determined to leave his mark on one of world football’s biggest matches, too, and his display could be characterised as an impressive blend of defensive destruction and attacking creativity.

A forceful presence at the heart of Liverpool’s midfield, Fabinho also provided a perfectly-measured clipped pass to assist Mane’s opener and went close to scoring himself with a low strike from the edge of the box in the first half.

An outstanding all-round performance from the Reds’ No.3.

‘Clyney is a high-class player’

The words of Klopp pre-match, while the boss explained the No.2’s inclusion in his starting XI.

Few, it’s fair to say, would disagree with the manager’s assessment following the ever-dependable Clyne’s first Premier League appearance of the season.

With Trent Alexander-Arnold, Joe Gomez and James Milner all ruled out, the 27-year-old slotted in to the right-back position and performed with impressive diligence throughout the 90 minutes.

Clyne’s display was typified by the fact that he led the way in terms of tackles by Liverpool players on four.

Patience is a virtue

By any metric you care to mention, Liverpool merited their win.

To say Mane’s opening goal was coming would be an understatement and, although United levelled before half-time, there was no doubt which team had their sights firmly set on the three points.

At the break, Liverpool led the way in shots by 15 to three.

By full-time, the Reds had registered 36 attempts on David de Gea’s goal, 11 of which were on target. Contrastingly, United had a total of six shots at Alisson Becker throughout the 90 minutes.

That it was still 1-1 after 73 minutes did not seem to unduly concern Klopp's side, who appeared confident that the breakthrough would come.

And when it did, Anfield erupted.

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