Chelsea’s bark was worse than the bite – they couldn’t land a glove on Liverpool

Sizzling Sadio Mane made sure the champions put the upstarts firmly in their place – with a little help from Andreas Christensen.

Mane struck a quickfire double, the second after a real howler from under-pressure Chelsea keeper Kepa Arrizabalaga.

And Liverpool shrugged off the loss of skipper Jordan Henderson to a thigh injury to win comfortably after Jorginho missed a penalty.

But it all came after Christensen dropped his side in it by getting sent off at the end of the first half for a professional foul on Mane.

Chelsea have been lapping up talk of a title challenge after a record summer spend.

And defender Kurt Zouma bigged up their chances of making a statement in this one, insisting they now have the firepower to “hurt” the Reds.

But Chelsea’s bark proved worse than their bite because they could not lay a glove on Liverpool.

The two sides shared eight goals the last time they met just two months ago, but it was all Liverpool in the second half of this one with the ten men putting up little resistance.

There’s absolutely no love lost between these two teams, who have traded barbs for months.

In a bust-up between the bosses at Anfield, Frank Lampard snapped: "One title you've won and you’re giving it the big ‘un.” And Klopp has since taken aim at Chelsea’s spending.

Spurred into action perhaps in part by Chelsea’s spending, Liverpool have finally dipped their toe in the market too.

Thiago Alcantara made a second-half cameo after coming in for £25m from Bayern Munich, but £41m fellow new boy Diogo Jota was not involved after leaving Wolves.

They still started the game with Fabinho playing as a makeshift centre back – but after being beaten early on by Timo Werner, he had the German’s number.

With Werner starting wide left, Kai Havertz played as a false nine for Chelsea. But that experiment was ditched at half time with the £71m man benched.

Havertz has struggled so far in a Chelsea shirt but he was sacrificed here for defender Fikayo Tomori after the home side went down to ten.

That came after the one big moment of the first half, when last-man Christensen brought down Mane and only received a yellow card from referee Paul Tierney.

VAR Michael Oliver sent him to have a second look, and Tierney changed his mind, sending the Denmark defender off.

To be fair, Christensen had played well up to that point, clearing a Liverpool effort off the line. But it was a bad error.

It didn’t take the champions long to break through after half time, with Mane heading in a Firmino cross and then adding a second after a horrible mistake by Kepa.

The dodgy Chelsea keeper tried to be too clever by half and watched his attempted pass to Kurt Zouma picked off by Mane, who punished him ruthlessly.

Thiago, introduced at half time for Henderson, sprayed plenty of lovely passes around but almost handed the home side a lifeline when he gave away a penalty for a foul on Werner.

Luckily for the Reds, Alisson saved Jorginho’s spot-kick. To rub salt in Chelsea’s wounds, it was the first he’s ever missed for the club, in nine attempts.

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