Liverpool maintain the title challenge with the precious victory over Aston Villa

London: Liverpool maintained their hopes of competing for the English Premier League football title after turning away from visiting Aston Villa 0-1 and winning 2-1 on Tuesday in a match postponed from the 33rd stage. Liverpool are on par with Manchester City in number of points (86 points), but quest’The latter is higher on goal difference and has a postponed game to be played on Wednesday against his host Wolverhampton. And Liverpool’s German manager Jurgen Klopp made five substitutions for the squad who played their last match against Tottenham, which ended 1-1, leaving them 3 points behind leaders Manchester City. Most in view of which Klopp kept on the reserve players’ bench was the Egyptian Mohamed Salah, top scorer in the league with 22 goals, perhaps to rest him before next Saturday’s FA Cup final against Chelsea, as he decided to involve the trio Colombian Luis Dias, Portuguese Diogo Jota and Senegalese Sadio Mane in attack line. Aston Villa started pressing and got their first chance two minutes later when Ole Watkins broke through in area and fired a powerful ball that was brilliantly blocked by Brazilian goalkeeper Alison Becker, but Villa managed to advance from the next attack when Frenchman Luca Digne lifted a ball inside Brazilian Douglas Lewis follows him in close range net (3). However, Villa did not enjoy more than a three-minute lead as Liverpool equalized by Cameroonian defender Joel Matip, taking advantage of the turmoil within the club.area penalty to follow the ball in net (6). And Greek left-back Costas Tsimikas crosses a cross that Mane’s header passes to Villa’s right post (21). And there was a chance for former Liverpool forward Danny Ings to bring Aston Villa in advantage, but his header went over the crossbar (25). Guinean Naby Keita wasted a very easy chance when Trent Alexander-Arnold’s ball reached him as he was unmarked under goal, but he tripped over the shot (31). Mane scored a goal which the referee disallowed due to the offside of his teammates Dias (33). Liverpool started the second half strongly and Dias was alone with veteran Argentine goalkeeper Emiliano Martinis, but questlast was the fastest to carry the ball (48). After several attempts, Liverpool managed to advance when Dias passed a perfect cross in areafollowed by a header from Mane from close range in net (65). And Mane upped his score in this season to 15 goals in championship. Salah participated in the last twenty minutes and came close to scoring after entering a few seconds, but Martinis pounced on the ball before the Egyptian reached him. Aston Villa threw all their weight to equalize and Ings scored a goal that the referee did not consider for offside (85). Ironically, Liverpool wasted no points ahead of the teams that entered in field against him and occupy the second section of the table by winning all 19 games so far, scoring 54 goals and conceding just 5 goals. (AFP)