Mohamed Salah and Diogo Jota both score twice as Liverpool thump Leeds
Mohamed Salah and Diogo Jota both struck twice as Liverpool snapped their five-game winless run with a resounding 6-1 victory at relegation-haunted Leeds.
Cody Gakpo and Salah put Liverpool 2-0 up at the break and after Luis Sinisterra had reduced the deficit, Jota’s second-half double sandwiched another effort from Salah before substitute Darwin Nunez completed the rout.
It was Liverpool’s first win in all competitions since they thrashed Manchester United 7-0 in early March, while Leeds’ survival hopes were dealt another big blow as they slumped to back-to-back heavy home defeats.
Both sides marked the 34th anniversary of the Hillsborough disaster before kick-off, with Leeds captain Rodrigo and Liverpool counterpart Jordan Henderson laying flowers in front of the travelling fans.
Rodrigo was in the thick of the early action. His header was saved by Alisson before the Spaniard dragged a low shot wide.
Leeds threatened again through Sinisterra’s angled drive as they looked to bounce back from a 5-1 thumping by Crystal Palace eight days ago, but they came unstuck in the 34th minute in controversial fashion.
Trent Alexander-Arnold appeared to use his arm to control the ball when dispossessing Junior Firpo.
But referee Craig Pawson allowed play to continue and there was no VAR intervention after Alexander-Arnold had received a return pass from Salah before crossing low for Gakpo to turn home.
There was nothing controversial about the visitors’ second though. Jota robbed Weston McKennie in midfield and slipped in Salah, who smashed a left-footed finish into the top corner from the left edge of the penalty area.
The visitors had struck twice in four minutes from their first two chances of the match to assume full control at half-time.
Leeds then hauled themselves back into it two minutes after the restart.
Ibrahima Konate was caught in possession by Sinisterra and the Colombian showed strength and composure to dink a neat finish over Alisson.
But Liverpool restored their two-goal lead five minutes later. Jota raced on to Curtis Jones’ defence-splitting pass and curled a first-time shot beyond Illan Meslier.
Leeds struck a post through Brenden Aaronson’s long-range effort as the action flowed and Salah had an effort ruled out for offside after a VAR check before Liverpool put the result beyond doubt in the 64th minute.
Andrew Robertson’s cross was helped on by Gakpo and the unmarked Salah converted his 15th league goal of the season at the far post.
Liverpool had emphatically reasserted their superiority and rubberstamped it with a fifth goal through Jota’s scuffed finish from Henderson’s cross in the 73rd minute.
Jurgen Klopp’s side completed the rout in the final minute, with substitute Nunez’s clinical finish from Alexander-Arnold’s pass ruled onside by VAR.