Luck was on Liverpool’s side as Mohamed Salah scored twice in a 2-0 victory over Everton at Anfield on Saturday to keep the Reds atop the Premier League table.
Ashley Young was sent off seven minutes before halftime for two bookable incidents, leaving Everton unhappy at the referee’s inconsistencies. Meanwhile, Ibrahima Konate avoided a second caution in the second half, keeping the score tied.
Salah converted a penalty kick 15 minutes from time after Michael Keane had handled the ball, after Liverpool had struggled to capitalise on their man advantage.
Seven minutes into overtime, Salah scored the game-winning goal after being set up by Darwin Nunez.
With this win, Jurgen Klopp’s team moves into first place in the league, ahead of Tottenham and Arsenal on goal differential.
The Reds haven’t been beaten at Anfield in front of a crowd by Everton since 1999, and they’ve only lost one of the last 29 Merseyside derbies.
There has been no match in the Premier League era with more red cards than the match between these two teams, and another sending off ultimately decided the game.
Before Young, 38, showed his age rather than his expertise by leaping in to chop down Luis Diaz and earn a second yellow card, Everton had vexed the hosts and posed a threat themselves.
A goal that looked inevitable for Diaz was prevented by a stunning last-ditch challenge by Young.
Dominic Calvert-Lewin’s early header was dangerously near to goal, but it was saved by Alisson Becker.
After seeing several of his top players return from South American World Cup qualifying games only hours before the Saturday midday kickoff, Klopp voiced his displeasure with the scheduling.
Diaz started for Colombia, Alexis Mac Allister for Argentina, and Nunez, who scored both goals in Uruguay’s 2-0 triumph over Brazil on Wednesday, came off the bench.
Despite having an additional player in the second half, Liverpool were tired.
Everton manager Sean Dyche reverted to a back five with the introduction of Keane at halftime, frustrating the home crowd by limiting Liverpool’s scoring opportunities.
The Toffees were taken aback when Konate, who had been cautioned for pulling down Beto, was not sent off as well.
Dyche was cautioned for his excessive protests after Klopp swiftly replaced the Frenchman with Joel Matip.
Diaz had a goal in Liverpool’s lone loss of the season at Tottenham last month mistakenly called out due to VAR uncertainty, so the Reds have had their own officiating issues as of late.
When Diaz’s cross hit Keane’s outstretched arm, however, VAR stepped in to protect them.
Salah scored his sixth goal of the season after the referee pointed to the penalty spot following a review at the side of the pitch.
The Egyptian took to social media on Wednesday to demand a halt to “massacres” between Israeli forces and Palestinian militants from the group Hamas.
Deep in stoppage time, as Everton pressed forward in quest of an equaliser, they were caught on the counter-attack by a perfectly-timed pass from Nunez to Salah, who finished easily.