A devastating four-goal, 30-minute spell tore Arsenal to shreds as Premier League leaders Liverpool won 5-1 to extend their lead to nine points and heap more even pressure on Manchester City.
Second-placed Tottenham had already blinked first before this match kicked off, losing 3-1 at home to Wolves, and City, now 10 points adrift, cannot afford to do the same at Southampton on Sunday with Jurgen Klopp’s side arriving on Thursday.
Roberto Firmino took his tally to eight goals in as many games against the Gunners with a hat-trick, with Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane also scoring after the visitors had taken the lead through Ainsley Maitland-Niles.
A ninth successive Reds victory made it 31 league matches without defeat at Anfield, their joint-third longest run, and extended their unbeaten start to 20 matches.
Fifth-placed Arsenal are 16 points off the pace but the gulf here was even wider as they collapsed under the first sign of pressure despite having taken an 11th-minute lead.
Here are five talking points from Anfield…
1. Liverpool have spirit as well as style
A goal down after their defence was breached for only the eighth time this Premier League season, the world was watching their reaction.
From behind to in front inside five minutes, their retort was as loud as it was clear.
It takes more than just winning when on top to take a title, and Jurgen Klopp’s side have shown the have character to go with their class.
Admittedly they were helped by some atrocious Arsenal defending, but Liverpool have shown time and time again that they are far more than just a good front three.
2. Arsenal should be learning from Liverpool’s problem solving
It’s all quite simple. When you sign unheard of defenders for next to nothing don’t expect results for quite some time. The Premier League is too cut-throat to thrust the likes of Sokratis Papastathopoulos and Stephan Lichtsteiner into the heat of battle.
It may have taken a while for the penny to drop, but a year ago Klopp saw Liverpool’s two problem positions – in goal and the lack of a leader in the middle of his defence – and did something about it.
Shkodran Mustafi has never been good enough and while Laurent Koscielny is the best of a bad bunch Arsenal need to follow Liverpool’s lead and land a proven Premier League centre-half and stop praying players who aren’t up to it will coming good.
3. Reds front three are now firing
It wasn’t long ago that people we wondering why Liverpool’s forward three weren’t quite clicking.
That was probably down to the way they ended last season rather than their lack of fluidity and facts but there’s no questions being asked now.
There’s not a forward line in world football which are more formidable and they look like they’re only just getting going.
Mo Salah has taken last season’s form into this campaign and although he is not always on the scoresheet, Firmino is more than just a finisher – even if you would be forgiven for thinking otherwise after this performance.
4. We’ll be talking about VAR and Liverpool A LOT next season
That’s not to say their players are diving, or going down too easily.
Everyone can make your own mind up about the spot kicks at Anfield but like a fair few they’ve been given this season will require a second look.
Both against Arsenal probably would be taken to VAR when it is introduced. Like at the World Cup it is going to dominate the debate.
5. Unai Emery still hasn’t got to the bottom of Arsenal’s defensive issues
The Gunners have now let in more first half goals than anyone else in the Premier League. Even Fulham, Cardiff and Huddersfield.
That scary stat should be enough to keep Arsenal manager Unai Emery awake at night. It’s certainly stopping their fans from getting to sleep.
Defensively dreadful doesn’t even come close to describing their first-half horror show at Anfield. No cohesion, little connection and certainly no signs it is going to get better any time soon. It’s like Arsene Wenger never left.