James Milner’s late penalty moved Liverpool back to the top of the Premier League with a nervy 2-1 win at Fulham on Super Sunday.

Title challengers Manchester City were in FA Cup action on Saturday and now have a game in hand, but Liverpool took advantage as Sadio Mane finished off (26) for his 20th of the campaign after a fine move involving Roberto Firmino.

After Alisson clumsily failed to fully reach a weak Virgil van Dijk header back, former Liverpool man Ryan Babel nipped in and turned the ball into an empty net (74) to stun the visitors, but they were back in front shortly after as Milner netted from 12 yards (80) following Sergio Rico’s tug on Mane.

The result means Liverpool are two points clear at the top of the Premier League, but second-place Manchester City have played one game less. Fulham have lost their last seven and remain 19th.

Despite looking resolute early on, Fulham were undone by a fine Reds move. Starting and finishing it, Mane galloped into the box on the left, slipping in Firmino at the byline before latching onto his cut-back to turn home from nine yards for his seventh goal in five games.

Andrew Robertson then stung the hands of Rico from a tight angle after a one-two with Adam Lallana, as Fulham struggled to deal with Liverpool’s threat down the left.

Liverpool continued to dominate after the break as Van Dijk forced a fine save from Rico after heading a Fabinho ball back across goal, but Fulham began to create anxiety for Jurgen Klopp as Andre-Frank Zambo Anguissa’s long-range volley was well held by Alisson.

 

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