Liverpool astonished by clinical Aston Villa as champions concede seven

Liverpool were left stunned as Aston Villa condemned them to an extraordinary 7-2 defeat.

On a day in which Manchester United had already conceded six goals in a shocking defeat to Tottenham, the Premier League champions were at the wrong end of a scarcely believable defeat of their own.

Ollie Watkins scored a hat-trick for Villa to get off the mark in the Premier League, with John McGinn, Ross Barkley and Jack Grealish (2) all also finding the net.

Alisson Becker was a notable absentee from the Liverpool starting lineup due to injury, with Adrian coming in for him.

But the deputy goalkeeper was at fault when Aston Villa took the lead inside five minutes, giving the ball away before Villa worked a chance for Watkins. The striker had an easy finish to make it 1-0.

Villa had a great chance to double the lead when Jack Grealish played the ball through Virgil Van Dijk’s legs and into the path of Barkley, but the Chelsea loanee shot off target.

Liverpool started to find their rhythm, but it was Villa who struck next. Watkins beat Joe Gomez in the channel before cutting inside and curling home into the top corner.

Jurgen Klopp’s side pulled one back when the ball fell to Mohamed Salah in the box. The Egyptian forward sent it into the top corner to reduce the deficit to 2-1.

But Villa restored their two-goal lead moments later when McGinn volleyed the ball from the edge of the box. It deflected off Van Dijk and into the net.

And Liverpool were stunned further when Watkins completed his hat-trick before half-time when heading home – becoming the first player to net a treble against Liverpool in a decade.

Villa continue dominance after break

Klopp tried to change things after the break, bringing on Takumi Minamino in place of Naby Keita.

But it was Villa who struck next, when ex-Everton midfielder Barkley’s shot was deflected into the goal off Trent Alexander-Arnold’s foot.

Salah pulled another one back to make it 5-2 with a smart finish.

Klopp then took off struggling Joe Gomez for the more attacking Curtis Jones, dropping Fabinho into defence. But the Brazilian was the victim of another big deflection as he inadvertently sent Grealish’s shot beyond Adrian to give Villa a sixth.

Adrian had to use his feet to deny Watkins another goal as the game entered its final 20 minutes.

But the keeper was unable to keep out Grealish moments later, as Villa clinched a seventh.

They could have extended the lead even further when Watkins hit the bar in the last 10 minutes.