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(BBC SPORT) Goals from Diogo Jota and Sadio Mane ensured Liverpool made it two Premier League wins from two with victory over Burnley at a packed Anfield.
In what was a promising all-round performance by Liverpool, captain Jordan Henderson returned to the starting XI after missing the opening-day win over Norwich, with teenager Harvey Elliott also impressing on his first Premier League start.
Jota opened the scoring in the 18th minute, heading past Nick Pope from Konstantinos Tsimikas’ cross for his second goal in as many games.
Mohamed Salah had the ball in the back of the net eight minutes later, but it was ruled out by the video assistant referee as the Egyptian was offside in the build-up.
Sean Dyche’s side were looking for back-to-back league wins at Anfield for the first time since 1897 after ending Liverpool’s 68-game unbeaten home run last season.
But Burnley’s brave defence were finally beaten again as Jurgen Klopp’s side doubled their lead through a superb second-half Mane strike.
Emotions were high before the match as Liverpool prepared to play in front of a full house at Anfield for the first time since 11 March 2020.
A full 528 days after the club last welcomed a capacity crowd, for their Champions League match with Atletico Madrid, fans belted out a rousing rendition of ‘You’ll Never Walk Alone’, which was followed by touching tributes prior to kick-off.
There was a minute’s applause as Anfield paid respects to lifelong supporter Andrew Devine, the 97th victim of the Hillsborough tragedy.
Fans on the Kop held up a mosaic with the number 97, as Henderson laid a wreath in front of the famous stand to remember the 55-year-old, who died in July, 32 years after suffering life-changing injuries in the 1989 disaster.
When the match got under way, Burnley had the first real chance with Dwight McNeil hitting the post inside four minutes, but it was Jota who sent the returning Liverpool supporters into raptures with his first-half header.
The Portuguese nipped between the Clarets’ centre back pairing of Ben Mee and James Tarkowski to nod past Pope for his first league goal at Anfield since November 2020.
Burnley thought they equalised soon after half-time, but Ashley Barnes’ effort was ruled out for offside.
Both managers were frustrated with decisions from referee Mike Dean, with 18 fouls conceded throughout the match and no yellow cards issued.
Liverpool took their time to settle into the second half, but soon found their rhythm and managed 17 shots after the break, seven of which were on target. And it was a superb bit of play, started by Virgil van Dijk and finished by Mane, which sealed the three points. Van Dijk’s long ball out wide found Elliott, who chested it down before finding Trent Alexander-Arnold. The right-back clipped a first-time pass into the box for Mane to fire past Pope as he opened his tally for the new season with his 50th goal for the Reds.