Liverpool recorded their 12th Premier League victory of the season on Wednesday after dispatching a spirited Burnley side 3-1 at Turf Moor.
Goals from James Milner, Roberto Firmino and Xherdan Shaqiri ensured the Reds were able to keep within touching distance of table-topping Manchester City, who had beaten Watford 2-1 the night before.
As good as Pep Guardiola’s men have been this term, they cannot seem to shake off the challenge from Liverpool, who are breathing down their necks just two points further back.
Weirdly, Liverpool are probably yet to hit top gear yet.
Certainly they are not playing the same ‘heavy metal’ football as last season, but they have more points at this stage than they did last term.
It has a lot to do with the defensive side of things.
Virgil van Dijk is, of course, colossal for Klopp’s side, but the fact that they’re so close to City is arguably mainly down to another player.
Alisson’s contributions have been huge
£67 million summer signing Alisson has really come up trumps for the club this season.
Barring the mistake against Leicester City, he’s hardly put a foot wrong in goal.
Against Burnley he started the counter-attack which killed the resurgent hosts off. Against Everton he made a crucial save from Andre Gomes at point-blank range with the scoreline still 0-0. That’s arguably five points he’s saved in the space of just a few days.
Statistically he’s been great too; he’s kept nine clean sheets and made 34 saves, conceding just six along the way.
The team have scored 30 goals so far which is an average of two per match. While that is very good, it’s the solidity and calm provided by Alisson that’s really behind Liverpool’s challenge to City.