Football: Liverpool crowned Premier League champions after Manchester City lose to Chelsea

Liverpool's English title drought has ended, with defending champions Manchester City losing 2-1 to Chelsea and handing 'The Reds' their first Premier League crown in 30 years .

The result at Stamford Bridge means Liverpool have an unassailable 23-point lead over City with seven games left.

Victory for City would have seen them hold onto the trophy a little longer, but their two-season reign is now officially over, after a superb solo goal by Christian Pulisic and a Willian penalty gave Chelsea the win.

Fernandinho was red-carded for a handball during City's 2-1 loss to Chelsea.
Fernandinho was red-carded for a handball during City's 2-1 loss to Chelsea. Photo credit: Reuters

Pulisic exploited a communication breakdown between Benjamin Mendy and Ilkay Guendogan after a City set piece, running from the halfway line, before confidently slotting the ball past Ederson to open the scoring in the 36th minute.

Kevin De Bruyne put City level with a brilliant dipping free kick 10 minutes into the second half, but Chelsea took the lead again through Willian's 78th-minute penalty, after Fernandinho was sent off for handling the ball on the goal-line.

Liverpool were last champions of England when they won the old First Division title in 1989/90, before a decline in fortunes saw Manchester United, Arsenal, Chelsea and City seize power.

Manager Juergen Klopp has rekindled the Anfield flame though and delivered the club's 19th title - one behind archrivals United's record of 20 - after finishing runners-up to City in a thrilling title race last season.

Despite the COVID-19 pandemic forcing a three-month suspension of the season and delaying the coronation, Liverpool have won the title with a record seven games to spare.

They eclipsed the record jointly held by Manchester United (2000/01) and Manchester City (2017/18), who sealed their respective titles with five games left.

If not for the unprecedented stoppage, Liverpool were on course to smash the record for the earliest league title. Instead, they are now the first team to lift the coveted trophy as late as June.

Liverpool ended last season with nine consecutive league wins and, after claiming the Champions League, began the new campaign in relentless fashion to leave their rivals trailing in their wake.

With 28 wins and just one defeat in 31 games, Liverpool set a record-breaking pace and were 25 points clear in February - the biggest lead in Premier League history.

That month, they beat West Ham United for their 18th successive top-flight win, matching Manchester City's record, before their hopes of an unbeaten season were dashed by a 3-0 blip at Watford.

Egyptian forward Mohamed Salah has led the charge, becoming the first Liverpool player to score 20 goals in all competitions in three consecutive seasons, since Michael Owen at the start of the millennium.

City were the first team to breach the 100-point barrier in the Premier League two seasons ago, but Liverpool are on course to shatter that mark, as well as records for most points at home (55) and most wins in a season (32). 

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