Newly crowned English Premier League champions recovered from their midweek humiliation at the hands of deposed Manchester City to make it 17 wins out of 17 at Anfield this season with a 2-0 win over Aston Villa on Sunday which pushed Dean Smith’s side deeper into trouble.
After their 4-0 mauling at the hands of City on Thursday, Jurgen Klopp’s side still looked a little out of sorts as they struggled to break down a determined Villa.
Klopp fielded another strong side but with the ground empty and the title already in the bag, there was a lack of edge to Liverpool’s play.
The visitor’s were solid and organised and could even have gone ahead in the 52nd minute when Anwar El Ghazi forced a fine save out of Alisson.
But Sadio Mane broke the deadlock in the 71st minute, meeting a low ball from Naby Keita with a firm shot that rattled in off the underside of the cross-bar.
Substitute Curtis Jones scored the second, a minute from the end, with the 19 year old hooking home after Mohammad Salah headed an Andy Robertson cross into his path.
Villa, who have now lost 20 games, remain deep in relegation trouble, in 18th place on 27 points and they have yet to win since the resumption of the season, their winless streak going back nine games.
“I don’t want to be a valiant loser because we are scrapping for points and we are running out of games. But I thought the game plan and the effort was excellent but we never found that quality in the final third,” said Smith.
Liverpool are now unbeaten in their last 57 Premier League home games with 47 wins and 10 draws and they have won 24 home games in a row.
Earlier, Newcastle United twice came back from a goal down as they grabbed a 2-2 Premier League draw with West Ham, robbing the visitors of the chance to put some more daylight between themselves and the relegation zone.
Having lost their previous seven away league games, West Ham started the day three points above the drop zone, and they got off to the perfect start when Michail Antonio opened the scoring after four minutes following a mistake by Jamaal Lascelles.
Newcastle levelled in the 17th minute through Miguel Almiron, who swept home Emil Krafth’s cross after a slick passing move by the home side.
They went behind again in the 66th minute when midfielder Tomas Soucek fired home. The lead was short-lived as Jonjo Shelvey struck back immediately and the points were shared.
Burnley and Sheffield played out a 1-1 draw.
Burnley 1 Sheffield United 1
Newcastle 2 West Ham 2
Liverpool 2 Aston Villa 0