Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool farewell turns sour with big decision looming over Mohamed Salah

A deflated Jurgen Klopp applauds the Liverpool fans

Mohamed Salah and Jurgen Klopp have been the two great driving forces of the most successful Liverpool era in decades so if the relationship had to break at last then the club would surely rather it was three games from the end, with nothing left to play for.

Even so, it was a quite spectacular conflagration on the touchline at the London Stadium with Salah so intent on making his point he was pushed away from the row with his manager by his team-mates. Even Klopp, a man who tends to rush towards confrontation rather than the other way, seemed to be taken aback. Darwin Nunez and then Joe Gomez, both also waiting to come on, intervened and at the end of the game Salah was swiftly off the scene.

Klopp has three games left as Liverpool manager. Salah may well have the same as one of the club’s greatest-ever players. But unlike Sir Alex Ferguson and Wayne Rooney, not even on speaking terms when they collected Manchester United’s 20th – and most recent league title – in May 2013, this dispute came out of nowhere. Even through his resignation announcement and the subsequent crash in form, Klopp has not yet clashed with any of his players – in public at least.

Salah had been dropped for the game – or rested as per interpretation - along with four other team-mates who had started the defeat at Goodison Park on Wednesday. He was due to come on just as Michail Antonio scored West Ham’s second, although that indignity alone was unlikely to have been enough to prompt such a furious response. Something is certainly amiss between the pair and is likely to be waved away as easily as Klopp might hope.

“We spoke about it in the dressing room and it is done for me,” Klopp said in his post-match press conference. “That’s it.” Was the same the case with Salah, he was asked. “That’s my impression,” the Liverpool manager replied.

The bigger picture is that Salah’s contract expires in one year’s time and the lucrative offer from Saudi Arabia has likely not gone away since it was dangled last summer in front of one of the world’s great players. It would be no great surprise to see him leave this summer – although a pity to see such a formidable player depart for a competition of that calibre at such a relatively young age.

Salah’s response when he left the stadium was playful, but also telling: “There’s going to be fire today if I speak.” It was done with half a smile but given this is a man who rarely talks publicly, aside from the occasional grand set-piece interview, it was indicative that he spoke at all.

For the current Liverpool manager these are rapidly becoming someone else’s problems – that someone else being the 45-year-old Dutchman Arne Slot, who will have watched this performance with interest. Salah made some incursions as a substitute in pursuit of a Liverpool winner and Harvey Elliott struck the bar with a shot in the final stages. Liverpool were, as Klopp said “super-dominant” for much of the game but also vulnerable with Jarrod Bowen’s first from West Ham coming from another set-piece.

Salah himself has not scored in the recent defeats to Atalanta, Crystal Palace and Everton which has given his club a glimpse of what life might be like in the post-Salah era. It is easy to take for granted that level of goalscoring but once it is gone then fortunes can change rapidly. Klopp said that he had no choice but to make changes for the fourth game in 10 days and there was something plaintive about his explanation.

“You can find a manager who can play the same team four times? That will be the next generation, not me anymore. I try to do what I think is right.” Even so, with the league title all but slipping away and his Anfield time coming to an end, one might have forgiven him for calling upon the greatest goalscorer still playing in the Premier League. However tired Salah might be, one suspects that he anticipated he would be starting this game.

Nunez, Dominik Szoboszlai, Ibrahima Konate and Curtis Jones were also omitted from the side that lost to Everton. They dominated the first half and for much of the game Luis Diaz was the outstanding player, clipping the post in the first half. But just before half-time, Mohammed Kudus was passed a short corner and Bowen lost Cody Gakpo to head in the first goal. Liverpool after half-time were much better and Andy Robertson, and then Gakpo, took their chances.

Yet Klopp was preparing an attacking substitution when the equaliser came and the row exploded. “I don’t think it looked like they would score in the next few seconds to be 100 per cent honest but it happened anyway,” Klopp said. He said the changes were to “keep controlling the game” and try to get a third goal. Within seconds West Ham had scored and Salah was berating his manager in front of the television cameras.

The penultimate Anfield game for Klopp is on Sunday against Tottenham, and all thoughts will turn towards him and Salah in the interim. Either way, whatever happens, Klopp is leaving after the last game of the season on May 19, although when it comes to Salah it feels another big decision is looming for player and club.

West Ham 2 Liverpool 2: as it happened

03:04 PM BST

And finally, David Moyes

They started the first half on fire, we couldn’t get the ball.

Everyone probably watched Everton-Liverpool and Everton were similar, compact and hard to play against. We did much of the same.

The first goal was important for us. Great credit to the lads for the character they showed to come back from there.

03:01 PM BST

Interesting reaction from influential account

02:53 PM BST

Watch: Salah and Klopp in heated row as Liverpool stumble again

Salah was dropped by Klopp ahead of Premier League match and gesticulated at manager when brought on as a substitute.

02:51 PM BST

Jurgen Klopp speaks to TNT Sports

I’m really disappointed obviously. It was only possible that one team wins the game with all the possession and all the chances we made. It’s a tough one after a tough 10 days.

We played really well but in the final situation we didn’t take the [chances] well and that’s why we are where we are.

You see the games. You see how it is.

We have to be more positive. We have to score early. We didn’t finish the situations but we played well. We have to acknowledge that and carry on.

[Can you tell us what happened between you and Mo Salah?] No. We spoke already in the dressing room so for me it’s done.

I’m not interested in speaking about it [the North London derby]. We had to win here, we knew that, we didn’t. We will try to get the boys ready again.

02:39 PM BST

Cody Gakpo speaks to TNT Sports

The result was not the one we wanted. We came for the three points. First half we controlled the game and then we conceded. It’s hard to come back but we scored two goals. We needed to be more calm, keep the ball and don’t concede any more. But we couldn’t

The manager said at half-time we just have to go for it. We have done it many times this season to bounce back form one behind.

The ball is not going in that often. That’s the thing we have had to improve for a pretty long time now. If I knew why [our finishing is not up to snuff] I would solve the problem.

It’s going to be very difficult [to win the title] but not impossible.

02:35 PM BST

Post-match verdict

What, for much of the first half, had looked like the least enticing of end of season stalemates, two sides with little to play for going through the motions, exploded with intrigue and event in the latter stages. There were touchline rows, comical own goals and blistering headers. Liverpool, who had looked emotionally spent for 45 minutes, suddenly woke up and played some of the blistering football which had sustained them for much of the season. In total domination, they first equalised Jarrod Bowen’s first half opener through Andy Robertson then took the lead when Cody Gakpo’s shot somehow managed to hit three home defenders on its way in.

What might be going on behind the scenes was revealed when Mo Salah and Darwen Nunez had a fierce argument as they waited to come on as substitutes. And maybe sensing Liverpool’s internal issues, West Ham found some resilience. And Michail Antonio’s lovely headed equaliser at least stemmed some of the hostility that had been brewing in the home stands among those anxious to make David Moyes the target of their ire.

02:27 PM BST

Liverpool stay third

Liverpool move up to 75 points, one behind City who have two games in hand, and two behind Arsenal who have a game in hand.

02:25 PM BST

Full time: West Ham 2 Liverpool 2

Ward-Prowse dinks the free-kick into the box, met by Antonio’s run but Mac Allister read it and as soon as he made the block, the ref blew for time.

02:24 PM BST

90+5 min: West Ham 2 Liverpool 2

Elliott’s miscontrol at the edge of the West Ham box as he lets the ball squeak under his studs spark a counter that Mac Allister has to stop with a foul that earns a booking.

02:22 PM BST

90+4 min: West Ham 2 Liverpool 2

Coufal chests Nunez’s cross back to Areola. TNT Sports’ Darren Fletcher gives birth to a litter of kittens mid-cross.

02:21 PM BST

90+2 min: West Ham 2 Liverpool 2

West Ham move it up the left in instalments, a throw-in and then a free-kick for a foul on Antonio.

Bowen, named man of the match, swings the right-foot cross into the box. Liverpool head it away.

02:20 PM BST

90 min: West Ham 2 Liverpool 2

Five minutes of stoppage time are signalled which Liverpool will start with a corner after Coufal stopped a crozz.

Szoboszlai ⇢ Qansah.

02:19 PM BST

89 min: West Ham 2 Liverpool 2

West Ham corner defended stoutly by Liverpool who break like lightning with Salah carrying it 50 yards before laying it off and Elliott drive sin from the left to skim a thunderous shot off the top of the bar.

02:18 PM BST

87 min: West Ham 2 Liverpool 2

Odd moment when Areola, who wants treatment, throws the ball down and Gakpo races in but is stopped from knocking it into the goal by the referee’s whistle and he promptly calls on the physio. But Areola restarts with a kick from hands so he ball was still live.

02:15 PM BST

85 min: West Ham 2 Liverpool 2

Very terse exchange of words between Klopp and Salah when the latter was coming on after 77 minutes. Both men venting at one another – the replays here at the London Stadium show Salah’s fellow substitute Darwin Nunez ushering him away.

02:14 PM BST

82 min: West Ham 2 Liverpool 2

Coufal stops Nunez tapping the ball in when Salah squares it across the area, six yards out. Before Nunez can squeeze the rigger, Coufal slides in to knock it behind for a goal-kick. ‘He’s given a bye-kick,’ says Ally McCoist incredulously.

02:11 PM BST

80 min: West Ham 2 Liverpool 2

Both sides fancy this now and are tearing into each other.

Salah seemed to be having an argument with Klopp on the touchline, waving and pointing and had to be hustled away by Nunez.

Just as Liverpool appeared to be on their way back into the title race, West Ham’s Michail Antonio has scored a text book header, sending Jarrod Bowen’s precise cross into the back of the net. Right from the coaching manuals, the West Ham forward demonstrated that the best direction to send a header is invariably back from the way it came.

02:09 PM BST

78 min: West Ham 2 Liverpool 2

The goal heralds a triple change by Klopp

Gomez ⇢ Alexander-Arnold

Nunez ⇢ Endo

Salah ⇢ Diaz.

02:05 PM BST


West Ham 2 Liverpool 2 (Antonio)  Power header after ghosting away from Qansah, heading it back and across from Bowen’s dinked cross with his left from the right. It came after the two sides of Alisson revealed themselves, in the preceding minute, dropping a cross and scrambling it away and then a world-class save high to his left to claw away Enerson’s shot.

02:05 PM BST

73 min: West Ham 1 Liverpool 2

Ward-Prowse ⇢ Soucek.

Paqueta moves further upfield but they are seeing nothing of the ball. Robertson fizzes a daisy-cutter in with his left and Areola drops to save.

02:03 PM BST

72 min: West Ham 1 Liverpool 2

Areola makes saves from Diaz, cutting in from the left on to his right and bending it round Zouma, having already denied the Colombia winger with his feet. The keeper also stops Mac Allister’s header when Gakpo hooked the ball over the back four.

02:00 PM BST

68 min: West Ham 1 Liverpool 2

The Premier League award the own goal to Areola, Opta gives it to Soucek and TNT Sports initially to Ogbonna whose inadvertent touch at least put it on course for the target.

West Ham are dong a bold impression of falling apart here. Liverpool, totally dominant, won a corner. The ball broke to Cody Gakpo whose cross cum shot managed to deflect off not one, not two but three defenders before beating Areola. David Moyes reacted by folding his arms across his chest. If only his defence were similarly phlegmatic.

01:54 PM BST


West Ham 1 Liverpool 2 (Areola og) Liverpool corner on the left after a shit from Mac Allister was turned behind. Alvarez flicks a header on at the far post and Gakpo shoots back across the six-yard box. The ball hits Zouma as he slides in, goes on to Ogbonna and catches him on the knee, knocking it behind into Soucek who tries to hack it clear but slices it into Areola’s hip and into the goal. Its a pinball wizard, there has to be a twist.

01:53 PM BST

63 min: West Ham 1 Liverpool 1

Extraordinary moment from Gakpo as Diaz’s cross gets caught wedged between his and Ogbonna’s knees and he tries to wriggle it free to fall on the floor to shoot. It eventually trickles on to the floor and there’s a touch of home panic from Zouma until Areola pumps it clear.

01:51 PM BST

61 min: West Ham 1 Liverpool 1

Zouma is infuriated by Anthony Taylor blowing for a foul when he goes up for a free-kick, having trotted the 60 yards into the Liverpool box, he has to head straight back again. After a whinge.

01:48 PM BST

59 min: West Ham 1 Liverpool 1

Alexander-Arnold turns up at inside-left to cut his foot across a half volley that sends it swerving and dipping towards the bottom right. Areola does well to get across and down to shove it behind.

From the corner, initially taken short, Mac Allister can’t impart any force on a header at the back post and loops it harmlessly.

01:46 PM BST

57 min: West Ham 1 Liverpool 1

Liverpool are camped around the West Ham box but are helped by the referee not punishing Gravenberch’s tug on Kuduss shoulder when the forward threatened to hit them on the break with a sprint through the centre-circle.

Liverpool have come flying out of the blocks at half time, playing some fluid, fast  attacking football. Robertson and Diaz on the left wing in particular are stretching the West Ham defence. An entirely different match this looks already.

01:44 PM BST

55 min: West Ham 1 Liverpool 1

Ogbonna saves West Ham’s … erm … bacon when Diaz dribbles in off the left and squares it to Gakpo who takes a touch that lets Ogbonna buy some time to lunge across and block the shot when it eventually comes.

Salah is warming up.

01:42 PM BST

52 min: West Ham 1 Liverpool 1

All Liverpool now, Gakpo almost flicking in a left-wing cross that hung too long in the air, then a couple of corners following Alexander-Arnold’s vicious worm-burner shot across goal.

01:37 PM BST


West Ham 1 Liverpool 1 (Robertson) Perspicacious and timely stat from TNT Sports as Liverpool equalise when Diaz feeds the ball in from the left to Robertson and he side foots a half volley between Zouma and Ogbonna who were trying to close the gap like sliding doors. Areola, who may have seen it late, tipped it into the bottom left. It was a pretty tame shot and a pretty weak wrist.

01:37 PM BST

48 min: West Ham 1 Liverpool 0

TNT Sports reminds us that Liverpool have won 27 points from losing positions this season, a division high ...

01:35 PM BST

46 min: West Ham 1 Liverpool 0

Nostradamus McCoist is proved wrong ... just like Nostradamus. No half-time changes for Liverpool. Alexander-Arnold swings a crossfield pass to Diaz who dinks it inside to Gravenberch 20 yards put and he smashes his half-volley over the bar.

01:20 PM BST

Half-time: West Ham 1 Liverpool 0

Pretty rubbish game aesthetically but West Ham have grabbed the opportunity given by some slack marking. Liverpool have had more of the ball but the home side have carried the main goal threat on the break.

Just caught sight of Darwen Nunez on the pitch at half time with the other Liverpool subs. Let’s just say he wasn’t exactly Tiggerish in his enthusiasm. He stood with his hands in his pockets while his colleagues kicked a ball around, refusing to join in any rondos.

01:19 PM BST

45+2 min: West Ham 1 Liverpool 0

McCoist lambastes Liverpool’s defending, their ‘pedestrian’ pace and predicts Liverpool’s XI for the start of the second half will be radically different.

Klopp is sitting down, which is rare. He needs a holiday.

01:17 PM BST

45 min: West Ham 1 Liverpool 0

The corner came from Alisson’s save after West Ham turned the screw from a free-kick after a foul on Antonio by Gravenberch.

It had been looking flat at the London Stadium. Flatter than David Moyes’s job prospects. For 42 minutes things had panned out as you might expect from an end of season fixture between two clubs with nothing left to play for. Liverpool had legitimate shout for a penalty, but it was ruled out after the customary lengthy VAR intervention when Cody Gakpo’s knee was adjudged to be offside in the build up. And Luis Diaz hit the post after a clever individual waltz through the West Ham defence. And then from a corner, Jarrod Bowen managed to skip ahead of Virgil Van Dijk, aka the world’s greatest defender, to nod the ball past Allison. Klopp and set pieces: a disaster narrative in five parts.

01:13 PM BST


West Ham 1 Liverpool 0 (Bowen)  Twenty goals for the season for Bowen. West Ham corner on the left, taken short to Kudus who arcs over a cross. Bowen steals between Gakpo and Endo to head it in. Quansah was also nearby but didn’t react. He had no real right to win that header and steer it into the bottom right.

01:13 PM BST

40 min: West Ham 0 Liverpool 0

Liverpool find some sharpness to work an opening down the inside right but the finish isn’t up to snuff again, Diaz hitting the post through Coufal’s legs, the 23rd time the Red Men have hit the woodwork this season.

01:11 PM BST

38 min: West Ham 0 Liverpool 0

Moyes is scribbling furiously. As a long dead friend of mine used to say when that happened: ‘He’s writing to his mam, again.’

Gakpo snaps on to a shot, trying to bend it in from the left of the D with the outside of his right boot after Diaz had chopped Mac Allister’s deep cross back to him. Would have had to be an old-fashioned banana bender like Dirceu’s banger to go in. But it stayed true, more a cucumber.

01:08 PM BST

35 min: West Ham 0 Liverpool 0

Liverpool have had the lion’s share of possession but are struggling to find any space. Elliott is a fine player but so far today he’s been used as a one-trick pony to cut in from the right on to his left, either to shoot or cross, the trajectory of the ball looking predictable.

01:05 PM BST

33 min: West Ham 0 Liverpool 0

When even the bubbly ambassador for football, Ally McCoist, says ‘this game needs a goal’ you know it’s not a classic. Liverpool work the ball from Gakpo in the inside-left channel to Elliott outside the box on the right and he tries to bend a left-foot shot, a la Xherdan Shaqiri, into the bottom left but huts it straight down Areola’s throat.

01:02 PM BST

31 min: West Ham 0 Liverpool 0

Good chance for West Ham after Paqueta jibs on a chance to shoot and lays it off to Bowen instead but the ball doesn’t drop as quickly as he required and consequently gave Alisson the time to spread himself for the shot when it finally came from Coufal.

01:01 PM BST

29 min: West Ham 0 Liverpool 0

Endo is booked for grabbing Kudus round the waist, having been rolled by the Ghan forward as he tried to counter following Areola’s save from Elliott’s straight shot.

12:59 PM BST

27 min: West Ham 0 Liverpool 0

West Ham are saved from conceding a penalty by a late offside call on Diaz. Though it looks tight. The ball was played over the top, a right to left diagonal. Diaz had a chance to shoot but mishit it across goal and Areola lunged to stop Gakpo, tripping him and then Ogbonna blocked the shot with his arms in front of his chest.

VAR takes an age but it was the right decision. And shouldn’t have taken so long.

12:55 PM BST

25 min: West Ham 0 Liverpool 0

Neither side seems able to inject any urgency into the game which must be a result of low confidence. There’s no rhythm to it, a lot of disruption.

12:54 PM BST

23 min: West Ham 0 Liverpool 0

Quansah makes sure Paqueta doesn’t nip ahead of him as they chased a ball down the middle, easing ahead of him and off the ball. Then Van Dijk seems to get away with a foul on Antonio because the ball ricochets to Bowen and the ref plays the advantage that comes to naught.

12:51 PM BST

21 min: West Ham 0 Liverpool 0

Alexander-Arnold takes with his right and gets it over the wall but it doesn’t come down in time to creep under the bar.

12:51 PM BST

20 min: West Ham 0 Liverpool 0

Alexander-Arnold stands over a free-kick awarded for a foul on Elliott, 20 yards out, left of the D.

12:50 PM BST

19 min: West Ham 0 Liverpool 0

Robertson’s corner is headed out by Ogbonna to Mac Allister on the 18-yard line but he scuffs his volley. Very flat atmosphere.

Luis Diaz
Luis Diaz takes on Areola - Action Images via Reuters/John Sibley

12:48 PM BST

17 min: West Ham 0 Liverpool 0

Diaz has a sniff up the middle chasing a bouncing ball bit cannot get the angles right. Very difficult chance, if it was a chance at all. Then some slick passing 30 yards out ends with a reverse pass out to Gravenberch on the left and he tries to feed a left-foot pass into Gravenberch but Zouma is there to block and then hoof it away.

12:45 PM BST

15 min: West Ham 0 Liverpool 0

Liverpool defend the corner but when they try to break, Elliott on the right passes blind into midfield and Bowen pounces on the misplaced pass but thumps his low shot from 22 yards straight at Alisson.

12:43 PM BST

13 min: West Ham 0 Liverpool 0

Good work by Bowen, dribbling from right to left across the Liverpool back four to free Kudus to shoot, a shot turned behind for a corner by a crouching block.

12:42 PM BST

11 min: West Ham 0 Liverpool 0

The home fans are very subdued and even the travelling Liverpool support are low on volume. The architecture doesn’t help.

Elliott has a half-chance at the back post after Robertson’s cross from the left is flicked on by Gakpo but Elliott pumps his shot on the half-volley into the side-netting.

Ryan Gravenberch
Ryan Gravenberch lost his marker at the far post - Action Images via Reuters/John Sibley

12:39 PM BST

9 min: West Ham 0 Liverpool 0

The free-kick is 35 yards out and Alexander-Arnold chips it up the inside left. Van Dijk makes the run and tries to lob it over Areola but Zouma beats him to it and slices it behind. Looked like a planned routine.

12:37 PM BST

7 min: West Ham 0 Liverpool 0

Mac Allister is hurt by Paqueta who is late on to a ball that spins between them, and plants his studs into Mac Allister’s ankle. Some real Brazil-Argentina bite there. Should have been a booking but Anthony Taylor just awards the free-kick.

12:36 PM BST

5 min: West Ham 0 Liverpool 0

West Ham break from the goal-kick and earn a corner that Bowen bends to the near post where the first Liverpool sentry wins the header. Liverpool break up the left but Alexander-Arnold’s pass with the outside of his right boot doesn’t reach Gakpo and is picked off by Coufal.

12:34 PM BST

3 min: West Ham 0 Liverpool 0

Quansah drives up the inside right to 20 yards from goal and slips it outside to Elliott who whips an inswinger in deep with his left. Gravenberch leaps to hook it back across goal on the volley but there’s no one there to nod it in once it bypassed Areola.

12:33 PM BST

2 min: West Ham 0 Liverpool 0

West Ham get a first touch after 110 secs as Paqueta gets a foot in to stop Liverpool’s probing around the box but he can only prod it back to a white and green shirt.

12:31 PM BST

1 min: West Ham 0 Liverpool 0

Fortune’s always hiding … Liverpool kick off, attacking from right to left and work it up the left for Robertson to whip an early cross in to the near post. Zouma gets in front of Gakpo to head clear.

12:27 PM BST

Out come the teams

Cue Bubbles.

West Ham are in claret and blue, Liverpool in green, white and black.

12:22 PM BST

Klopp v Moyes head to head

It’s 11-1 to Klopp with one draw.

12:16 PM BST

Jurgen Klopp smiles through a short interview

The only way [strikers] can change the situation is by taking their chances. It’s about us. What is left and right of us is not in the middle of our focus. We have to play a football game. The boys are brilliant, they really are and now we just have to [win].

12:13 PM BST

Ally McCoist pays tribute to Jurgen Klopp

11:50 AM BST

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11:49 AM BST

Mohamed Salah starts on the bench for Liverpool

Mo Salah
Mo Salah's struggles since his injury at the Africa Cup of Nations have left him on the bench today - Andrew Powell/Liverpool FC via Getty Images

11:47 AM BST

Those team changes

Liverpool drop/ rotate out Salah, Nunez, Konate, Szoboszlai and Jones. In come Gakpo, Elliott, Endo, Gravenberch and Quansah.

West Ham have Areola back after he was injured at St James’ Park, replacing Fabianski, with Bowen also back for Ward-Prowse.

11:44 AM BST

Your teams in black and white

West Ham United  Areola; Coufal, Zouma, Ogbonna, Emerson; Soucek, Alvarez; Bowen, Paqueta, Kudus; Antonio.
Substitutes Fabianski, Johnson, Cresswell, Ward-Prowse, Phillips, Cornet, Ings, Casey, Mubama.

Liverpool Alisson; Alexander-Arnold, Quansah, Van Dijk, Robertson; Mac Allister, Endo, Gravenberch; Elliott, Gakpo, Diaz.
Substitutes  Kelleher, Gomez, Konate, Szoboszlai, Nunez, Salah, Jones, Tsimikas, Bajcetic.

Referee: Anthony Taylor (Cheshire)

11:42 AM BST

Areola returns for West Ham

11:41 AM BST

Liverpool make five changes

11:39 AM BST

Preview: And it’s goodbye from him ...

Good afternoon and welcome to live coverage of West Ham United versus Liverpool in the Premier League. Jürgen Klopp’s side start the day in third, three points behind Arsenal and two behind Man City (who also have a game in hand) following their slump in Wednesday’s derby, a second defeat in three that seem to have kebabbed their title hopes. There are still four games to play so hope springs eternal for Klopp’s final four games and even if they don’t manage to recover, which seems hugely likely, they will be keen to give him the finale his eight years’ service deserved, performances characteristic of the principles he has championed, principles that won Liverpool a European Cup, a title and both domestic trophies.

As for West Ham, it looks like farewell too for David Moyes, last year’s Conference League trophy notwithstanding. Hammers fans of my acquaintance are simply tired of what they perceive to be a tactical and selectorial rigidity, that an inherent caution and the ongoing lack of an adequate alternative to Michail Antonio has left them less than the sum of their talented parts.

It is sometimes difficult to remember that they are still eighth, only two points behind Newcastle, but their capitulation at St James’ Park, followed by their home defeat by Fulham and a woefully inadequate performance in their 5-2 drubbing by Crystal Palace means that David Sullivan is bound to roll the dice. Even a victory here for Moyes is unlikely to win him a new contract but he has the players to hurt Liverpool if they play as badly as they did at Goodison.

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