Football Features

‘Death, taxes and Sadio Mane’ – How Premier League history was made in Liverpool 3-0

By Harry Edwards

Published: 17:24, 18 September 2021

Sadio Mane has become the 18th player to score 100 goals for the Liverpool across all competitions in what was his 224th appearance for the club.

Liverpool were made to work hard for their 3-0 victory over Crystal Palace at Anfield on Saturday, with the visitors having the better chances in the early stages as Christian Benteke looked to hurt his former side. However, as the game looked to be going into half-time level, Mane struck.

The goal came from a set piece, with Mohamed Salah’s effort saved by Vicente Guiata, but Mane was unmarked to tap in the rebound and bring up the big 100 for Liverpool. The Senegalese forward joins the likes of Ian Rush, Steven Gerrard, Robbie Fowler, Kenny Dalglish, Michael Owen, John Barnes and Mohamed Salah (alongside 11 others) to score a century of goals for Liverpool across all competitions, with 76 of those coming in the Premier League.


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Goal 99 for Mane came last week in Liverpool’s 3-0 win over Leeds after what had been an underwhelming performance from the forward following a disappointing 2020/21 campaign by his high standards that had brought just 16 goals in 48 appearances. The Senegalese forward is also just two strikes away from scoring 100 in the Premier League since his arrival in the competition in 2014, having also netted 21 in 67 games for Southampton.

But with his strike against Crystal Palace, Mane has already made history. Mane loves playing Crystal Palace more than any other team, scoring 13 goals in 15 games against the Eagles across all competitions for Liverpool and Southampton, his best record – five more than he has managed against Aston Villa (second favourite).

That alone would be a remarkable return, but Mane has now scored in each of his past nine (yes, NINE!) Premier League appearances against Crystal Palace – the first ever player to achieve such a streak in the competition. The run started in Mane’s second season with Liverpool, after drawing a blank in his one appearances against Crystal Palace in 2016/17 (though the Reds still won that fixture 4-2), as he scored the only goal in a 1-0 home win.

Mane’s next six league games against Crystal Palace all brought a goal each but he scored two in one match for the first time at the end of last season, when he netted both goals as Liverpool beat the Eagles 2-0 on the final day of 2020/21. All eyes will now be on the return fixture in January to see whether Mane can make it 10 in a row, but Crystal Palace fans are starting to get sick of the sight of him.

Speaking after the game, Mane joked that he would love to play Crystal Palace every weekend, something fans of the Eagles would consider a nightmare.

“I am lucky to score so many goals against Palace,” he told BBC Sport.

“Most important thing was the three points. Right place, right time. I am lucky. And happy. Thank you to all the fans, club and staff. Without them I am nothing.

“I would love to play against Crystal Palace. I am lucky. It would be great to play them every single weekend. In my head I am always thinking it is possible. I will keep trying and trying and trying.”

Following Mane’s opener in a tight first half, Liverpool went on to finish with a comfortable scoreline, though it shouldn’t take away from Crystal Palace’s performance. After a tough start under Patrick Vieira, the Eagles appear to have found their feet and caused Liverpool’s back lines serious problems both at 0-0 and 1-0. They had 13 shots in total including six inside the Liverpool area, but they were seriously let down by their accuracy, hitting the target just twice.


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Following Mane’s opener in a tight first half, Liverpool went on to finish with a comfortable scoreline, though it shouldn’t take away from Crystal Palace’s performance. After a tough start under Patrick Vieira, the Eagles appear to have found their feet and caused Liverpool’s back lines serious problems both at 0-0 and 1-0. They had 13 shots in total including six inside the Liverpool area, but they were seriously let down by their accuracy, hitting the target just twice.

That would all prove costly for Crystal Palace as Salah doubled Liverpool’s lead with just over 10 minutes to go, finishing from close range as the visitors failed to deal with a corner – a similar situation to the first goal, only this time the Egyptian did score. It was his seventh goal in 10 games against Crystal Palace, continuing his run of scoring in each of the past four seasons against the Eagles (though he is yet to manage two games in a row). The win was then wrapped up by Naby Keita’s excellent effort from outside the area, sending Liverpool top of the league.