Both Sadio Mane and Mohamed Salah showed off a trademark of elite players in Liverpool’s win over West Ham United. The Reds had to come from behind at Anfield.
Liverpool took a lead on Monday and things looked comfortable for all of about two minutes. West Ham quickly equalised from a corner and turned the game on its head.
Things took an even stranger turn when the Hammers got a second goal just after half-time. Liverpool were now losing in the Premier League – one of the rarest things this season.
Fast-forward to full-time and Liverpool were celebrating yet another win. Their record-equalling 18th consecutive Premier League win, in fact.
And who got the goals? Mane and Salah, of course, the duo bagging a first-time finish each to down West Ham.
And yet, neither actually played well at all.
West Ham dispossessed just two Liverpool players on multiple occasions (per Whoscored) – Mane and Salah, twice each. The duo each had a pass-completion of under 80%. They had eight shots between them but only half hit the target – two of Mane’s three didn’t actually make it to the goal.
But they were the match-winners. They kept going, kept getting into good positions and even if things weren’t going perfectly, they had the belief that they would.
And that is the trademark of truly elite players. Because even on their off days, they still both score to win the game.
Sure, Mane’s was a tap-in and Salah’s needed a goalkeeping howler but it’s that they made those things happen. The mentality to keep pushing and trying despite everything telling you that it won’t happen.
The duo are two of the best around and it’s these poor performances, as well as the great ones, that prove it.