Man Utd v Liverpool: Match in pictures
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Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp has warned West Brom could scupper his side’s Champions League ambitions despite a huge victory over Manchester United on Thursday. The 4-2 win at Old Trafford revived the Reds’ top-four hopes – but they still need to win their remaining Premier League games against the Baggies, Burnley and Crystal Palace.
Klopp’s side are now four points behind fourth-placed Chelsea after Roberto Firmino’s double plus goals from Diogo Jota and Mohamed Salah secured victory in a six-goal thriller against fierce rivals United.
Liverpool have a game in hand over both Chelsea and Leicester – who face each other at Stamford Bridge next Tuesday for what will be their second clash in four days after meeting in Saturday’s FA Cup final.
If the Reds win all three of their remaining games, in a worst case scenario for Klopp’s side they will be level on points with Leicester, with fourth place then determined by goal difference.
But Klopp says nobody should be taking Saturday’s opponents West Brom for granted after the relegated side’s improvements since Sam Allardyce took charge in December.
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After masterminding his first win at Old Trafford, Klopp said: “I know for supporters, journalists all these kind of things it means, ‘Yes, they won now against United, now they go to West Brom…’ and stuff like this, but we are not like this, thank God.
“West Brom plays an exceptional second half of the season, obviously. It was tough for them, it was really close and they played some really good football.”
Baggies boss Allardyce suffered relegation from the Premier League for the first time in his managerial career after his side were beaten 3-1 by Arsenal last weekend.
The Gunners didn’t have it all their own way with Matheus Pereira scoring a superb solo goal – while West Brom showed what they are capable of with a shock 5-2 win away to Chelsea last month.
And Klopp fears the damage West Brom could do now they are free from the pressure of needing Premier League points.
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“They are now completely free of pressure so that can lead to anything,” said the Reds boss.
“So, we take it game by game. Tonight, we were good enough to win it and then on Sunday if we would be good enough to win the next one, that would be really cool as well.”
Thursday’s win over United means Liverpool will end the season on 69 points if they repeat the feat in each of their remaining three games.
A win for Chelsea against Leicester next Tuesday would see Thomas Tuchel’s side finish on 70 points if they also won at to Villa Park on the final day of the campaign. Meanwhile, the Foxes would finish with 69 points if they were to beat Tottenham in their last home game.
Were Leicester to win at Stamford Bridge, they could finish the season with a maximum of 72 points, with Chelsea only able to get to 67.
A draw between the third-and fourth-placed sides next week would mean Brendan Rodgers’ side could finish on 70 points with Chelsea able to reach a maximum of 68.
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