Leaders Liverpool maintained their perfect start to the Premier League season as first-half goals from Trent Alexander-Arnold and Roberto Firmino secured a 2-1 win at Chelsea on Sunday that left them five points clear at the summit.It was a sixth straight league win from the start of the campaign for Juergen Klopp’s European champions and extended their club-record streak to 15 in total.Chelsea, who put up a spirited fightback in the second half, pulled a goal back with a superb effort from N’Golo Kante but a second defeat of the season left them 10 points adrift in 11th.Liverpool took the lead in the 14th minute when Alexander-Arnold rifled the ball into the top corner after Mohamed Salah backheeled a free kick into his path on the edge of the box.Chelsea had been a clear second best in the early stages but were denied an equaliser by VAR after 26 minutes when Cesar Azpilicueta bundled the ball in only for replays to show that Mason Mount had strayed a fraction offside in the build-up.Liverpool made the most of the reprieve as four minutes later Andy Robertson’s cross from the left was headed powerfully into the net by the unmarked Roberto Firmino.Kante pulled one back in spectacular fashion, turning midfielder Fabinho, before attacking the heart of the visitors’ defence and curling the ball into the far corner, but Mount and substitute Michy Batshuayi missed late chances to equalise.FRENETIC PACELiverpool began the match at a frenetic pace as the intensity of their pressing game kept Chelsea pegged firmly against the ropes, struggling to keep possession or build any momentum and it was not long until the pressure told.advertisementSalah backheeled a free kick to Alexander-Arnold, who let fly with his right foot, drilling the ball past goalkeeper Kepa Arrizabalaga.Despite being second best for much of the first half, Chelsea still had their moments.Azpilicueta bundled the ball home after 26 minutes, but the home crowd’s raucous celebrations were swiftly curtailed when replays showed Mount was inches past the last defender.Salt was then rubbed into the wound when Liverpool doubled their lead four minutes later.Alexander-Arnold tapped a free kick on the left to Andy Robertson, whose cross was met by Firmino and he powered his header home from close range.Liverpool should have added to their advantage early in the second half when Firmino was left unmarked at the far post but he scuffed his volley and the Brazilian’s effort was parried away by Arrizabalaga before Chelsea began to find their feet.After Kante pulled a goal back with his solo effort, they looked the more likely to score again, but chances came and went.Batshuayi headed wide after 88 minutes and Mount scooped a Marcos Alonso cross over the bar at the death to leave the home side rueing their missed opportunities.
“US leadership will remain crucial in the period ahead,” Mr. Ban said during a press encounter with the newly-appointed Secretary of State.The Secretary-General said there was much for the two men to discuss, including Syria, where nearly 70,000 people have been killed since the crisis began almost two years ago and “the tragedy continues to deepen without any prospect of a political resolution.”Also on the agenda today was the crisis in Mali, the recent nuclear test conducted by the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK), and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.“We all need to make special efforts to forge a two-State solution before the window of opportunity closes,” said Mr. Ban, who welcomed the plans of President Barack Obama and Mr. Kerry to visit the region.“It is important that the right of Israel to exist should be respected and also the viable Palestinian authorities, in terms of the political and financial situation, be supported so that both can live side by side in peace and security. That is a two-State solution,” he stated.Mr. Ban also noted that at a time when families and government everywhere are feeling severe financial strains, the benefits of working with the UN are clear – burden-sharing, wise use of the global taxpayers’ money, and international solutions in the national interest. “I look forward to strengthening the US-UN partnership and working closely with Secretary of State Kerry towards our shared goals of peace, development, and human rights.”As part of his two-day visit to the US capital, Mr. Ban held meetings yesterday with members of the US Senate and House of Representatives, and addressed the Organization of American States (OAS).