Thursday, 24 May, 2018

Chelsea close on top four with win over Liverpool

European qualification: Premier League sides set to discover their fate Gary Cahill: I am a success at Chelsea
Elias Hubbard | 07 May, 2018, 00:50

It was a fitting introduction for two undoubted Premier League heavyweights - of which there are many in a thriving era - but this was more a contest for the HBO belt (the rubbish one) than the WBC belt (the best one).

Salah was given a chance to impress in Chelsea's home clash with Norwich City towards the end of the season but Mourinho chose to haul his January signing off at the break after a subdued first half. In contrast, Chelsea's winning the league in 206/17 was more to do with perseverance as you can not manage to slack in a 38 game season.

The spotlight at Stamford Bridge was on league top scorer Mohamed Salah, facing his old club, but the Egypt forward was booked for diving and had a quiet afternoon - one that was understandable in the circumstances, according to Klopp.

"If you asked me what I wanted this morning when I woke up - a nice easy 3-0 win, go home and enjoy the sun and don't care about the Brighton game and prepare already for the final". We can not play players who are not available.

"How it looks in the moment, hopefully the boys all came through the game they showed again their outstanding character". Liverpool will take on holders Real Madrid in their eighth European Cup final appearance on May 26 in Kiev.

The Frenchman's flicked header just after the half-hour mark was enough to see off a Liverpool side who appeared jaded following their midweek Champions League exploits.

With a six-point cushion on their rivals, a win would mean that Liverpool will guarantee their place in next season's Champions League with a top four finish, while Chelsea must ensure to win if they want to have a chance of entering into the Champions League spots.

In head-to-head statistics, these two clubs have met on 157 occasions, with the Reds boasting 71 wins compared to Chelsea's 53 while 43 matches ended in draws. "The situation is very intense for the boys and I am really happy and proud of them how they deal with it".

Liverpool vs Chelsea in the first leg.

However, David Luiz is still out with a long-term knee injury while Ethan Ampadu is also unavailable.

For Liverpool, Adam Lallana is back in training but unlikely to be available from the start.

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