Keïta’s talent on show in first Premier League start of the season as Reds squash Cherries

Liverpool beat AFC Bournemouth 3-0 at the Vitality Stadium. The Reds now sit on top of the table with 46 points. Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Naby Keïta and Mohamed Salah were on the scoresheet as Klopp’s side dominated the Cherries.

Keïta returned to the starting XI for the first time in the league this season but it looked like he hadn’t missed a second. Despite only playing a total of 14 minutes of Premier League football this season, the Guinean put in a man-of-the-match performance.

After Oxlade-Chamberlain’s opener, the No.8 doubled the lead shortly before the end of the first half. Keïta linked up with teammate Salah who, after receiving the a pass from the midfielder, held up the ball and returned the pass with a clever back-heel for Naby to poke the ball past Aaron Ramsdale.

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The Guinea international repaid the favour in the second half. The former RB Leipzig man drove forward with the ball before releasing a well-timed and perfectly-weighted ball into the path of the Egyptian. Salah coolly slotted past the Welshman to put Klopp’s side 3-0 up.

It wasn’t just Keïta’s goal involvements that earned him the man of the match — his passing and defensive displays were also a factor. The £52m-man won five out of seven ground duels and also won three out of four tackles. He completed two interceptions as well at the Vitality Stadium. His pass accuracy was 95% and created three chances in his performance.

The midfielder has had a tough time dealing with injuries and has struggled to stamp his name on this team. However, now with Fabinho out till the New Year and Liverpool having six games left in December, it could now be a good time for Keïta to show why he should be in the starting line-up on a more frequent basis.

Scott Mason

Contributor. Irishman. Steve Finnan started my LFC love story.

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