Match report: Liverpool beat Manchester United 7-0 at Anfield
A devastating attacking display from Liverpool saw Manchester United beaten 7-0 at Anfield.
Cody Gakpo, Darwin Nunez and Mohamed Salah each scored twice, with Roberto Firmino adding a late seventh, as the Reds produced a remarkable performance to record their biggest-ever victory over their arch-rivals and reassert their burgeoning bid for a top-four finish.
Six of Jürgen Klopp’s side’s goals came during an irresistible second half after Gakpo had broken the deadlock two minutes before half-time.
Nunez and Gakpo made it 3-0 soon after the restart, with Salah smashing home his first in the 66th minute and Nunez then grabbing his second, prior to Salah overtaking Robbie Fowler as the club’s record Premier League goalscorer.
And there was still time for Firmino to squeeze in number seven at the end of an unforgettable afternoon at Anfield.
Gakpo returned to Liverpool’s starting XI as one of three changes from the midweek win over Wolverhampton Wanderers, with Andy Robertson and Jordan Henderson also coming in.
Diogo Jota, Kostas Tsimikas and Stefan Bajcetic made way and were named on the bench.
Liverpool: Alisson, Alexander-Arnold, Konate, Van Dijk, Robertson, Fabinho (Milner, 79), Henderson (Bajcetic, 78), Elliott (Jones, 85), Salah, Nunez (Jota, 78), Gakpo (Firmino, 79).
Unused subs: Kelleher, Tsimikas, Carvalho, Matip.
The opening 10 minutes were played almost exclusively in United’s half as the Reds, powered by the electricity of the atmosphere being created by the home crowd, flew out of the blocks.
Clear-cut chances were few and far between, however, with Salah curling an effort over before Lisandro Martinez intervened crucially as Nunez appeared certain to convert Robertson’s delivery.
Bruno Fernandes nodded wide before Casemiro, who was several yards offside, saw a headed goal disallowed – but, moments later, Liverpool led through Gakpo.
Robertson injected urgency into a patiently built move from the back by darting infield with the ball and bisecting United’s backline with a perfect pass into the No.18.
From there, Gakpo cut inside and arced a precise shot into the far bottom corner to give his team the advantage shortly before the break.
Klopp’s team emerged from the interval in the mood and, by the 50-minute mark, their lead stood at three.
Textbook holding midfield play from Fabinho set the opportunity up, the No.3 doggedly retrieving possession before Harvey Elliott’s cross was headed home by Nunez.
Liverpool’s third was a thing of beauty, a sweeping move from back to front with Gakpo involved throughout. The sequence concluded with Salah befuddling Martinez and slipping a weighted pass into Gakpo who, from a tight angle, dispatched a delicious dink over David de Gea.
The hosts were rampant and Robertson and Ibrahima Konate each went close to scoring prior to Salah doing so midway through the period.
Again, Liverpool were utterly ruthless in winning the ball back and finishing, Salah this time applying the last touch with unerring power and accuracy, the Egyptian’s right-footed blast crashing in off the underside of the Kop-end crossbar.
There was to be no let-up as the Reds mercilessly made the scoreline ever-more handsome.
Nunez’s adroit header made it five, Salah scored a sixth before, just as he did in 2020, removing his shirt in celebration in front of the Kop and Firmino came off the bench to round off a scarcely believable result.