Another Premier League weekend, another Liverpool win. It seems inevitable that the league title is heading to Merseyside this season.
However, Watford made this victory far from simple for the European champions.
The team line-up came out an hour before the game, and once again Jurgen Klopp ringed the changes during a hectic festive period. Andy Robertson was on the bench, while Xherdan Shaqiri was given a rare start.
Fans were still confident though, and why shouldn't they be? Watford were sitting rock bottom of the table.
Deeney back for Watford is a massive bonus. Adds an extra easy outlet ball who can get the ball down and bring the pace of Deulofeu and Sarr into the game. Huge bonus for the future but still expect a comfortable victory for Liverpool today.— Futbol Analyser (@futbolanalyser) December 14, 2019
However, the Reds were struggling to break down a stubborn Watford rearguard, so Liverpool fans decided to blame...the wind?
Genuine question, will the 45mph winds forecast in Liverpool affect the game today?— B. (@ByronBobzi) December 14, 2019
Liverpool playing well, but the wind is definitely making it difficult. If they can get in front, this match gets much easier I think— Sanoj (@britishblackman) December 14, 2019
Wind was stopping Liverpool making penetrative passes in that half, can see them creating a lot more in the second half.— Statsdan (@FplStatsdan) December 14, 2019
Watford were close to taking the lead at Anfield, but Abdoulaye Doucoure was guilty of missing an absolute sitter. So yep, you guessed it. Minutes later Liverpool took the lead courtesy of Mohamed Salah.
Doucouré forgets how to shoot. Liverpool straight up and Salah does that. Game over— Madridboss_08 (@Madridboss0) December 14, 2019
I was just typing “I have a feeling Watford will regret missing that chance” and Liverpool scored before I could even finish— Scott Saunders (@_scottsaunders) December 14, 2019
Doucoure with the chance of a life time and he fucks it up terribly. What makes it worse is that Salah scores soon after #livwat— Mikko (@Mikkony) December 14, 2019
The Hornets continued to provide a huge threat to Liverpool's defence, and Ismaila Sarr took some of the limelight off teammate Doucoure with an equally impressive miss of his own.
Sarr should have his contract terminated immediately— Tom (@CynicalLive) December 14, 2019
Sarr & Doucouré want Liverpool to win the league— CFCDaily (@CFCDaily) December 14, 2019
Liverpool went into the break with just a one goal lead, but surely things would be a lot easier in the second half?
Even VAR was not on Liverpool's side (for once), as it ruled out a Sadio Mane header because a tiny strand of his armpit hair was deemed to be offside.
VAR. Doing its best to ruin football since August.— James Pearce (@JamesPearceLFC) December 14, 2019
Chances continued to come and go for Watford, with Sarr and Gerard Deulofeu being kept out by the brilliant Alisson Becker. How glad they must be the have him back.
Alisson had one of those games again. Made everything look dead easy but he was actually brilliant.— Sam McGuire (@SamMcGuire90) December 14, 2019
As the game headed into the dying embers, Liverpool nerves were jangling.
However, Salah settled Reds fans down with an audacious flick to make it 2-0 and wrap up the game. Fans refused to celebrate though, with the threat of VAR looming. Oh, how it has improved our beautiful game...
VAR is destroying the Premier League. This can't go on, it's farcical to spend 3 minutes checking if someone's arsecheek is offside.— Ryan Williams (@razza6999) December 14, 2019
LOOOOOL it’s so mad man have to celebrate with question marks these days cause of VAR https://t.co/Iz9DgGeYje— Yungen (@YungenPlayDirty) December 14, 2019
Another win for Liverpool means that they're another step closer to their first Premier League title. Despite it being unconvincing at times, all that matters right now during this period is to pick up the three points.
Next hurdle for the Reds? Two games in two days. We really do love football during Christmas time.