Allan Saint-Maximin produced an inspired performance to lead Newcastle United's 4-1 win over hapless Bournemouth, while Leicester City's hold on a Champions League spot slipped again.

Leicester's slump in form continued with a 2-1 defeat at Goodison Park, with Everton battling to a second Premier League win on the bounce.

The Toffees enjoyed a great start, as Richarlison turned home a fine pass from youngster Anthony Gordon early on and then Gylfi Sigurdsson converted a penalty following a handball by Wilfred Ndidi.

Leicester were brighter after the break once James Maddison and Kelechi Iheanacho were introduced, with the latter netting fortuitously, but Everton held on to the win and owed thanks to Michael Keane for clearing off the line following a Jordan Pickford error.

Defeat leaves the Foxes just three points clear of fifth-placed Manchester United.

Elsewhere, Newcastle's performance was by no means perfect at the Vitality Stadium, but they still blew their hosts away – Saint-Maximin playing a major role.

The Frenchman picked out Dwight Gayle for a fifth-minute opener and then dazzled Bournemouth as Newcastle went 2-0 up with half-an-hour played, tricking his way past Adam Smith before picking out Sean Longstaff.

Saint-Maximin completed his hat-trick of assists when teeing up Miguel Almiron just prior to the hour, and Valentino Lazaro rounded things off towards the end after Jonjo Shelvey's pass, moving Newcastle on to 42 points and leaving the Cherries - who got a late consolation through ex-Newcastle midfielder Dan Gosling - second from bottom after a fourth successive loss

The day's other early kick-off saw Arsenal hammer rock-bottom Norwich City 4-0.

Jurgen Klopp has urged fans to celebrate Liverpool's Premier League title triumph at home as much as possible in response to the scenes that met their confirmation as champions. 

Last week, the Reds and Merseyside police released a joint-statement condemning those who gathered in the city centre, flouting social-distancing rules put in place amid the coronavirus pandemic. 

Several arrests were made for public order offences while fire officers also needed to put out a blaze at the famous Liver Building on Friday after it was struck by a firework. 

In an open letter to the Liverpool Echo, Reds boss Klopp paid an emotional tribute to his team, supporters and past legends at the club, including Kenny Dalglish and Steven Gerrard. 

But he also issued a plea for people to continue to follow the rules put in place during the COVID-19 health crisis. 

"What I did not love – and I have to say this – was the scenes that took place at the Pier Head on Friday," wrote Klopp, who oversaw the end of Liverpool's 30-year wait for a top-flight title.  

"I am a human being and your passion is also my passion but right now the most important thing is that we do not have these kind of public gatherings.  

"We owe it to the most vulnerable in our community, to the health workers who have given so much and whom we have applauded and to the police and local authorities who help us as a club not to do this.  

"Please celebrate - but celebrate in a safe way and in private settings, whereby we do not risk spreading this awful disease further in our community. 

"If things were different I would love nothing more than to celebrate together, to have a parade that would be even bigger than the one after we won the Champions League last year, so that we could all share this special moment but it just is not possible.  

"We have all done so much to fight COVID-19 and this effort cannot go to waste. We owe it to ourselves and each other to do what is right and at this moment that means being together and being there for one another by being apart. 

"When the time is right we will celebrate. We will enjoy this moment and we will paint the city red. But for now, please stay at home as much as possible.  

"This is not the time to be in the city centre in big numbers or to go near football grounds. At the start of this crisis I said that we did not want to play in an empty stadium but if it meant that it helped just one person stay healthy we would do it no questions asked and nothing has changed to make me alter this view." 

Klopp spoke of his "privilege" to manage Liverpool, while also praising Everton and the club's supporters for being part of a rivalry he said is part of the city's "heartbeat". 

Liverpool are 23 points clear of second-place Manchester City, whose record tally of 100 points remains very much in reach. Klopp, however, is not merely interested in final numbers as a barometer for his squad. 

"The mistake would be to focus only on how many points we lead by because I can't think of too many games in which we were not forced to fight for every single inch," he added.  

"In some, we had to dig deep into our souls to find a way to win. On so many occasions I walked into the dressing room afterwards, amazed and so happy with what I had just seen, only to find the boys out on their feet because they had given so much on the pitch.  

"This is a hard league and it has been won the hard way no matter what the table says. 

"For this to happen we have needed so many ingredients to come together. The actions and achievements of the players speak for themselves.  

"All of the tributes that they have received are so deserved and as their manager I could not be more proud.  

"But for all the focus on their ability and their commitment, one thing that has been overlooked is that as a group they understand exactly what it means to represent this city and carry its name. 

"This is the petrol in their tank that is always there and it has fuelled us every step of the way."

Bundesliga champions Bayern Munich appear to be keen on adding more local talent to their squad.

Spaniard Thiago Alcantara is reportedly unwilling to extend his Bayern contract beyond 2020-21.

So, Bayern could use the star midfielder in their efforts to prise Germany international Kai Havertz from Bayer Leverkusen.

 

TOP STORY – BAYERN WANT THIAGO OUT AND HAVERTZ IN

Bayern Munich want to sell Thiago Alcantara to fund their move for Bayer Leverkusen star Kai Havertz, according to Kicker.

Thiago reportedly wants to leave Bayern amid links to Liverpool after opting against a new deal in Bavaria.

Now, Bayern are looking to offload Thiago for €60million (£53m) in order to sign Havertz for €80m.

Havertz has also been linked to Chelsea, Liverpool, Manchester United and Real Madrid.

 

ROUND-UP

- Staying in Munich and Kicker also claims Bayern have joined Borussia Dortmund and United in the race for Birmingham City teenager Jude Bellingham.

- TF1 says Arsenal midfielder Matteo Guendouzi has been in contact with Barcelona, Paris Saint-Germain, Atletico Madrid and Inter over an exit from London.

Liverpool have made a big offer to sign Wolves speedster Adama Traore, according to Mundo Deportivo. Traore has also been linked to the likes of Barca and Madrid.

- According to Fichajes, Tottenham have made an offer for in-demand Lille defender Gabriel Magalhaes. The likes of Napoli, Everton and Madrid are also looking to sign the Brazilian.

- Is Hellas Verona's Marash Kumbulla set for Lazio? Gianluca Di Marzio reports Lazio have tabled an offer for the defender, who is also wanted by Juventus and Inter.

- Could Tanguy Ndombele and Philippe Coutinho swap clubs? The Independent says Barca have reached out to Tottenham over an exchange deal involving either Coutinho or Nelson Semedo for wantaway Spurs midfielder Ndombele.

Arsenal could make moves for Chelsea's Willian or Coutinho, according to the Daily Mail.

Milan are in talks over the return of Chelsea midfielder Tiemoue Bakayoko, says Gazzetta journalist Nicolo Schira. Bakayoko spent the 2018-19 season on loan at San Siro.

Everton have confirmed the departure of Morgan Schneiderlin to Ligue 1 club Nice for an undisclosed fee.

Schneiderlin, 30, signed for Everton in January 2017, joining the Toffees from Manchester United in a deal reportedly worth up to £24million.

The former Southampton midfielder initially impressed at Goodison Park under Ronald Koeman, but struggled to keep up that form and found himself a bit-part player under Marco Silva and Carlo Ancelotti.

He will now join Patrick Vieira's Nice, who finished fifth in the shortened Ligue 1 season in 2019-20, following the official opening of the international transfer window.

Maarten Stekelenburg has signed a short-term extension with Everton but will leave for Ajax at the end of the season.

Veteran goalkeeper Stekelenburg's contract had been set to expire at the end of June, but he will remain at Goodison Park for an extra month after the Premier League's end date was pushed back following the coronavirus-enforced shutdown. 

The 37-year-old, a World Cup runner-up with Netherlands in 2010, has signed a one-year deal with Ajax from August 1 and will leave the Toffees after their final top-flight fixture of 2019-20 against Bournemouth on July 26.

Stekelenburg started his professional career at Ajax in 2002 and won three Eredivisie titles and the KNVB Beker on three occasions during a nine-year spell.

"I am very happy to be able to return to Ajax, the club where it all started for me," Stekelenburg said in a statement.

"As a family we really wanted to go back to the Netherlands this year and I was really only hoping for one club.

"After good conversations with Marc Overmars and Erik ten Hag, it was clear to me. I'm really looking forward to it."

Ajax's director of football Overmars said: "Maarten Stekelenburg is not only a well-known name, but also a goalkeeper we can use here.

"He will be one of the three goalkeepers in the A-team from August. I think he adds quality on the pitch and given his age and experience he is also going to create better balance in our squad."

After stints at Roma, Fulham, Monaco and Southampton, he arrived at Everton in 2016 and has made 26 appearances for the club, primarily serving as back-up to England number one Jordan Pickford.

Jordan Henderson says a lack of cutting edge cost Liverpool in Sunday's "disappointing" Merseyside derby stalemate with Everton.

In the absence of injured forward Mohamed Salah, Liverpool struggled to create any clear-cut chances at Goodison Park in their first match back following a three-month hiatus.

It is just the third time the runaway leaders have dropped points in the Premier League this term and skipper Henderson admits an improvement is needed against Crystal Palace on Wednesday.

"I think we can be a lot better, of course. We know that but there were still some positive things that I thought were good," he told Liverpool's official website. 

"We tried to adapt to the situation but overall obviously we are disappointed because we wanted to come here and get the three points. 

"But there are still plenty of positives, a clean sheet and I thought we defended really well. We just lacked that bit in the final third.

"The intensity was pretty good with the counter-pressing with the ball higher up the pitch. I thought that was good. 

"We were unlucky with a couple of injuries and hopefully they are not too bad. Overall, we've just got to take it, move on and try to be better in the next game."

Jurgen Klopp confessed after the match that Liverpool were "lucky" to escape with a point after Alisson Becker made a fine save late on to deny Dominic Calvert-Lewin.

And Henderson reserved special praise for the Brazil international, who now has a joint-high 11 clean sheets in 21 Premier League appearances this season.

"He has been outstanding all season and he's come up with a brilliant save as well to keep us with a clean sheet, so that was important for us," he said. 

"But, overall there's still a lot of positives. Like I said, in the final third I think we can be a little bit better and more clinical but we'll get ready now for Wednesday."

"Every game in the Premier League is tough and each team. You look at our next game against Palace, who performed well on Saturday, so every game we play will be tough.

"We've just got to perform as best as we can and try and win as many games as we can."

Despite being held by Everton, Klopp's side boast a 23-point lead on Manchester City having played a game more than their closest challengers, who they face next week.

Jurgen Klopp is hopeful the injuries suffered by James Milner and Joel Matip in Liverpool's stalemate with Everton are not serious.

In their first game back from the coronavirus-enforced break, Liverpool were held to a 0-0 draw in the Merseyside derby at Goodison Park on Sunday.

They are 23 points clear of Manchester City, who have a game in hand, atop the table, as they close in on a first league title since 1990.

However, Klopp has worries over Milner (hamstring) and Matip (toe) ahead of Wednesday's home clash against Crystal Palace.

"'Millie' felt a hamstring a little bit, but we had this in the past. 'Millie' is not often injured and hopefully it is not serious," the Liverpool manager told a news conference.

"He is smart enough to show up in the moment when he feels it, so hopefully it was the right moment. Maybe not Wednesday [against Palace], but after that I would hope for.

"Joel was unlucky and we had to make a quick decision. It was a situation with Richarlison and he bent or stretched his big toe.

"I don't think a lot of people have had that. It is really painful, but hopefully it settles, the pain settles and then we will see. I hope nothing serious has happened, but I don't know yet."

Jurgen Klopp conceded Liverpool were fortunate to escape with a point from the Merseyside derby against Everton.

For the second season in succession, the fixture at Goodison Park finished goalless but only after Tom Davies struck the post 10 minutes from time.

Liverpool controlled most of the contest but had little to show for their superiority in the way of clear opportunities.

Nevertheless, Klopp was largely satisfied with what he saw as his team edged to within five points of the Premier League title.

"It was a real fight, both teams invested a lot," he told Sky Sports.

"Both teams showed that they understand it's a derby. Even without a crowd it was intense, physical. It was all in. All players were really involved and in the game.

"I liked our defending, our counter-press was good. We won a lot of balls. We didn't have enough chances for the possession we had.

"Most of the time we were dominant but then they had the biggest chance. It came out of the blue and we were lucky in that moment.

"Apart from that we were in control but we want to have more chances ourselves."

Everton captain Seamus Coleman did a superb job at right-back in shackling Sadio Mane, although Klopp felt his team could have been cuter to exploit the space elsewhere that that tactic created.

"We have to be more clear in the situations, pass the ball and shoot in the right moment, more crosses in the right area," he added.

"After 60, 70 minutes I could see it was better, we were finding the right spaces.

"Everton defended really well, they tried to take care of Sadio and Trent [Alexander-Arnold].

"We were then not smart enough to use the space you have if one player like Coleman plays completely against Sadio."

Takumi Minamino was handed a start as Mohamed Salah remained unused on the bench.

Despite some bright touches and a couple of half chances during the opening 45 minutes, the January recruit from Salzburg made way for Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain at the break.

"Before the game I had the idea I wanted to change really early, just use the opportunity that five changes give you," Klopp explained, insisting his decision was not a slight on Minamino's display.

"Taki played well. At the beginning it was a bit difficult but then he was in the game.

"It had nothing to do with Taki's performance. It was purely my idea to try it."

It's getting closer, and that's about the best Liverpool can say about the 236th Merseyside derby. 

Yes, they dropped points in the Premier League for just the third time this season, but Liverpool always draw at Everton. It's seven times in the last eight meetings in the competition now that the Goodison game has ended in stalemate. 

That elusive Premier League trophy is nevertheless edging its way towards Anfield, and that means this latest visit across Stanley Park can be chalked up as a successful mission. 

Had Dominic Calvert-Lewin converted the chances that came his way in the second half, or Tom Davies buried a glorious match-winning opportunity, then the elbow bump followed by an attempted bear hug from Carlo Ancelotti for Jurgen Klopp at the final whistle might not have been so gladly received. 

For Everton were Liverpool's equals in this first match back for both sides since the league was suspended in March, and that should provide cheer for those on the blue side of the city fence. 

Klopp's Reds, whose lead over Manchester City has been clipped slightly to 23 points and could drop to 20 when Pep Guardiola's men face Burnley on Monday, ought to have nothing to worry about. 

They, as much as Everton, could have won this game, which was not a classic by any means. They rarely are: with tempers raging and tackles flying in, football can come second to animosity and score-settling in the derby. 

But unusually this was tepid, akin to pre-season fodder, one to chalk off probably as a settler for the rest of the games that will rush by over the next five weeks. 

The coronavirus effect on football has inevitably cast a dampener on Liverpool's special campaign, and empty seats at the home of their rivals were a sorry sight. 

Everton and Liverpool have not traditionally done social distancing particularly well, with Goodison Park and Anfield being uncomfortably close. 

The boys in blue have been in their neighbours' shadow for the past 35 years too, and seeing Liverpool carry off the title this season will sting. 

Yet in the league table, these teams have unmistakably been keeping their distance from one another this season. 

Everton began the game with just 37 points, a full 45 fewer than Liverpool, the greatest gulf between the sides for a Merseyside league derby in their histories. 

For a while, the contest was a great advert for a points-per-game resolution and an abandonment of the campaign - the resolution many of those without an eye on football's finances have thought wise all along. 

But then came the flashes of excitement you remember from when football stadiums were packed, and supporters would chide one breath, cheer the next, and when players would respond and the energy would grow, sending the temperature of these occasions soaring. 

Roberto Firmino burst forward and drove his shot wide, Trent Alexander-Arnold went for goal with a free-kick from 35 yards that could have embarrassed Jordan Pickford, and then Liverpool lost James Milner to an apparent hamstring problem, a dose of first-day-back-at-school glumness for the midfielder and Klopp. 

Naby Keita shot just off target after a neat one-two with Firmino before Everton began to hog the chances, Richarlison squandering a big opening when he blazed high and wide of Alisson's goal, his composure still in lockdown. 

Calvert-Lewin almost made the breakthrough when he produced a delicate backheeled flick to divert Richarlison's cross from the left towards goal. 

Alisson made the save but the ball still reached Davies at the far post, the 21-year-old seeing derby glory before him but sending his shot against the foot of the left post. 

Calvert-Lewin headed wide for Ancelotti's men moments later, with the visitors clinging on. 

Liverpool might be about to anti-climax their way through the final leg to glory, but glory all the same is surely still coming. 

Dominic Calvert-Lewin rued the late chances Everton passed up to end their Merseyside derby misery against Liverpool.

The Toffees are now without a win in 19 Premier League matches against their near neighbours, although they almost stole the points after an obdurate defensive showing in a behind-closed-doors Goodison Park game.

Alisson was forced into a smart save from Calvert-Lewin's instinctive 80th-minute flick before Tom Davies struck the post on the rebound.

Calvert-Lewis then sent a diving header wide and Alisson denied Brazil colleague Richarlison to leave Liverpool five points away from their long-awaited title triumph.

"Yeah, it was just instinct at the end, we had a few chances but it wasn't our day," the England Under-21 international told Sky Sports.

"Sometimes they go in, sometimes they don't and unfortunately today it didn't.

"Well take the point but that was a big chance for us today."

Normally played out amid a febrile atmosphere, Calvert-Lewin conceded a Merseyside derby without fans took some getting used to.

"It was strange, I can't lie to you," he said. "Playing with no atmosphere and no fans, it was a little bit bizarre for a game of this magnitude.

"Usually the place is bouncing and it was hard to get used to. But we play football for a living and it's all about focus.

"The only thing that changes is sometimes you get that little uplift from the fans when they're all roaring.

"That had to come from within today, which I think it did, and we were unlucky not to nick it."

Calvert-Lewin also acknowledged the lack of quality for large chunks of the contest was inevitable to some extent after the lengthy lay-off.

"Obviously it wasn't as sharp as you'd expect when we had the rhythm of the games before," he added.

"It's been a long time out and the players are a little bit rusty.

"Myself, my timing was a bit off, with my check challenges and my duels and things like that. Those are things you can't really replicate and it comes with games."

Liverpool edged closer to their first league title in 30 years but were frustrated by an obdurate Everton in a 0-0 derby draw at Goodison Park. 

The Toffees are now winless in 19 Premier League matches against their local rivals, although that statistic did not appear to weigh upon Carlo Ancelotti's approach as his side offered scant attacking threat. 

They still came closest to breaking the deadlock 10 minutes from time, though, as Tom Davies hit the post after Alisson had kept out Dominic Calvert-Lewin's clever flick.

Jurgen Klopp left Mohamed Salah unused on the bench and his team need four more points to become champions, although that equation will change if Manchester City fail to beat Burnley on Monday. 

An early error from Fabinho let Richarlison loose to flash a shot across the face of Alisson's goal.  

Takumi Minamino dispossessed Andre Gomes in the 34th minute, allowing Jordan Henderson and Sadio Mane to tee up Roberto Firmino, with the Brazil forward pulling wastefully wide.  

Everton centre-back Michael Keane, booked for an earlier foul on Mane, produced a vital block to thwart Minamino before half-time, by which point Liverpool had lost James Milner to a hamstring injury and sent on Joe Gomez. 

Firmino's clever chested lay-off saw Naby Keita volley wide in the 51st minute, with Everton attacks having more or less disappeared from view. 

It made Richarlison's shank into the Gwladys Street End with Virgil van Dijk breathing down his neck all the more frustrating. 

Trent Alexander-Arnold had a 63rd-minute free-kick deflected over before Joel Matip joined Milner on the injury list. 

In the context of a dour contest, Everton launched a stirring late rally, Davies agonisingly close to snatching glory and Alisson frustrating his compatriot Richarlison once more after Calvert-Lewin sent a diving header wide. 

 

What does it mean? Liverpool made to wait 

Not that they will mind at all, but Liverpool could still end next week without being crowned Premier League champions.

When they are, their success should be remembered in the context of what came before the coronavirus pandemic. This soulless encounter was very much at odds with the finest moments Klopp has crafted on Merseyside. 

No shame for Seamus 

It might only be one win in 15 attempts now, but Seamus Coleman is still an Everton player who knows what it feels like to beat Liverpool. The experienced captain led by example at right-back, with two inch-perfect challenges on Gomez and Mane early in the second half crucial when it came to preserving parity. 

Minamino still bedding in 

Klopp said the extended training period before the Premier League restart had been useful for January recruit Minamino. A surprise inclusion ahead of Salah, who is still short of match fitness, the former Salzburg forward showed some nice touches and enjoyed a couple of half chances, but the opportunity to make a statement passed him by. 

What's next 

A stunning title triumph may still be completed when Liverpool host Crystal Palace on Wednesday, with Everton on the road at bottom club Norwich City. 

Takumi Minamino was handed a start for Liverpool in the 236th Merseyside derby against Everton at Goodison Park, with Mohamed Salah on the bench for his team's first game since the Premier Leauge restart.

Minamino has only made three substitute appearances in the top flight since joining from Red Bull Salzburg in January, but gets his chance as Salah "works his way back to full fitness" according to Liverpool's official website.

Naby Keita starts in midfield after impressing in the recent friendly against Blackburn Rovers and Joel Matip gets the nod to partner Virgil van Dijk at the heart of a defence that is missing Andy Robertson.

James Milner will slot in at left-back, with Georginio Wijnaldum and Joe Gomez among the substitutes.

Everton boss Carlo Ancelotti has handed a first Premier League start to teenage winger Anthony Gordon, as the Toffees look to end a winless run against their local rivals that stretches to 18 top-flight matches.

Liverpool are five points away from securing a first top-flight title since 1989-90.

Trent Alexander-Arnold will wear one-off 'Black Lives Matter' boots during Sunday's Merseyside derby against Everton, with the Liverpool star hoping society can begin to fix itself in the face of discrimination.

Following the death of African American man George Floyd in police custody last month, anti-racism protests have swept the globe and the Premier League gave its backing ahead of this week's restart.

For this round of fixtures, players' shirts have donned 'Black Lives Matter' (BLM) above their numbers instead of names, while players have taken a knee for the first nine seconds of some matches.

Similarly, Manchester City have confirmed a BLM sleeve patch will remain on their jerseys for the rest of the season.

Liverpool resume their campaign at Everton on Sunday and Alexander-Arnold has planned a special gesture, as he will wear one-off BLM boots and then auction them off, raising money for the Nelson Mandela Foundation.

"'Do your talking on the pitch'. I've always loved that sentiment - but now we need to speak up in other ways as well," the 21-year-old wrote on his social media channels. "Tonight [Sunday] my boots will carry the message Black Lives Matter.

"It can no longer just be our feet where we express ourselves. We have to use our profile, the platforms we have and the spotlight that shines on us to say, it's time for meaningful change.

"The system is broken, it's stacked against sections of our society and we all have a responsibility to fix it.

"Black people are viewed differently. We face discrimination in actions but also in thought. It's more than just violence and abuse. Opportunity in life is restricted if you look a certain way. How can that be in 2020?

"Sadly so many in the black community have to face this each and every day - but I also have hope. Hope that the world is awake in this moment. Finally willing to learn.

"So while we have this opportunity, where people are listening, let's speak, let's educate, let's campaign and let's promote the message that better education brings change.

"This is the moment of change. This is the moment to say enough is enough. This is the moment to make sure it stops now. Racism is a fire that is now burnt out."

Trent Alexander-Arnold thinks Jurgen Klopp's impact at Liverpool has been "mind-blowing" and he applauded the German for managing to embody the club and city despite not being a local.

Klopp made the switch to Liverpool in 2015 after leaving Borussia Dortmund, replacing Brendan Rodgers and taking over a team in transition.

He quickly made a difference, guiding them to the Europa League final in his first season, but that was just the tip of the iceberg.

In 2017-18, the Reds reached the first of two successive Champions League finals. Although a defeat to Real Madrid left them disappointed on that occasion, they went on to beat Tottenham to claim a sixth European crown the following year.

And now Liverpool are on the verge of a first Premier League title, and a first top-flight success in 30 years – just two wins stand between them and the trophy, with the Reds set to resume their campaign following the coronavirus shutdown on Sunday when they visit rivals Everton.

While Liverpool's squad has undoubtedly benefited from significant investment over the past five years, many are quick to point to Klopp's influence, and Alexander-Arnold is one of them.

"To think back to where the club was when he took over to now, all the players and what level we were at, whether he bought us or helped us come up from the academy, the things he's done to the whole club have been mind-blowing," the full-back told BBC Radio 5 Live.

"To change the whole club, to change everyone from doubters to believers, to get everybody thinking the same way, believing the same way and having the same dreams – he just embodies the whole club.

"Even without being from the city, the country and being local, he just clicks with the club. He does it with every person – the fans, the staff and the players.

"You've got to respect the things he does. Every person who has been involved with him can only thank him as much as possible. The way he develops the people around him to making their dreams come true and helping them do what they want is amazing.

"He is someone who will always be special to the club and to me personally."

The season's suspension left Liverpool in limbo for a while, unsure whether they would get to complete what was on the verge of becoming a historic year for them.

Although it was eventually established that the Premier League did wish to play 2019-20 through to its conclusion, Alexander-Arnold conceded it was exasperating having his dream put on hold.

"If you can imagine your ultimate dream and being so, so close to it – two steps away from it really – and someone saying, 'you need to wait over 100 days then you might get it'. It was quite frustrating," he added.

"But the league position hasn't changed, our mentality hasn't changed and that is to win every game, push boundaries, break records, win the league and be remembered.

"You have to wait so long to win the league, then when you do it, you have to wait so long to celebrate it properly. The things we see on that day, though, will hopefully be things we will never forget."

Liverpool hold a 22-point lead at the Premier League summit and know victories over Everton and Crystal Palace in their next two matches will seal the title.

Manchester United could be edging closer to landing Fiorentina star Federico Chiesa.

Chiesa, 22, has been heavily linked with a move away from the Serie A club, where he came through the youth system.

And the Italy international could be on his way to the Premier League.

 

TOP STORY – MAN UTD GETTING CLOSER TO CHIESA

Manchester United are pushing for Chiesa and their latest offer could be enough to start proper negotiations, according to La Nazione.

Chiesa has also been linked with Juventus and Inter with his contract in Florence running until 2022.

A 17-time Italy international, Chiesa has scored seven goals and provided three assists in 26 games this season.

 

ROUND-UP

- Joao Felix has yet to hit top form at Atletico Madrid. Goal reports the LaLiga club turned down a £135million (€150m) offer from a Premier League side earlier this season.

- Chelsea could yet strengthen further. The Daily Express says they are in talks to sign Leicester City left-back Ben Chilwell, who is said to be valued at £80m. Chelsea will have Hakim Ziyech and Timo Werner arrive at the club ahead of next season.

- David Luiz's future at Arsenal remains uncertain following his horror show against Manchester City on Wednesday. According to the Daily Mail, the Brazilian defender wants a two-year deal, rather than the one being offered. Luiz is coming out of contract at the end of the month.

- Could Edin Dzeko's time at Roma be coming to an end? Corriere dello Sport reports Roma need to qualify for the Champions League to keep the striker at the club. Dzeko is contracted until 2022, while Roma are three points behind fourth-placed Atalanta in Serie A.

- Morgan Schneiderlin is set to return to France. RMC Sport says the midfielder will leave Everton to join Nice, returning to Ligue 1 for the first time since 2008.

- Staying at Goodison Park and Everton have joined the race for Real Valladolid defender Mohammed Salisu, according to the Mirror.

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