This was essentially the passing of the guard.

Champions Liverpool, on their patch, lost 4-1 to table toppers and whisper it a bit more loudly now, champions-elect Manchester City.

Goalkeeper Alisson Becker seemed to be eager to do the honours of personally gift-wrapping the title and handing it over to Pep Guardiola’s men.

The Brazilian, who was impeccable alongside the stricken Virgil van Dijk, as they ended the Reds’ 30-year wait, was culpable for City’s last three goals, all tucked away by Ilkay Gundgoan, Raheem Sterling and Phil Foden.

Gundogan had put aside a missed penalty in the first half, to open scoring in the second half.

Ruben Dias pulled at Mohammed Salah and referee Michael Oliver pointed to the spot. The Egyptian superstar dusted himself to make it 1-1 from the spot.

And then, City went into overdrive, in a way only they can.

At full time, they are now five points ahead of second-placed Manchester United with a game in hand. And possibly the title too.

Liverpool vs Man City: Guardiola’s men thrash EPL champions 4-1 at Anfield

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