A first-half strike from midfielder Naby Keita helped Liverpool secure a hard-earned 1-0 win at Newcastle United on Saturday as Juergen Klopp's side kept their Premier League title hopes alive and provisionally went top of the table.

The victory put Liverpool two points ahead of champion Manchester City, which can regain first spot with a win at Leeds United later on Saturday. Newcastle is ninth on 43 points.

After an early half-chance for Virgil van Dijk, Liverpool hit the front in the 19th minute through Keita when he cleverly dribbled past Martin Dubravka to slot home following a smart link-up with Diogo Jota.\

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Liverpool, with possibly one eye on the second leg of their Champions League semi-final against Villarreal on Tuesday, started without Mohamed Salah, Fabinho and Trent Alexander-Arnold but their absence was seldom felt as the visitors were barely troubled in the opening exchanges.

With Liverpool dominating possession, Newcastle's best moment of the half arrived when Miguel Almiron had the ball in the net after being played through by Bruno Guimaraes, only for the Paraguayan to be flagged offside.

Liverpool had a flurry of chances after the break but failed to beat Dubravka, who twice denied Jota as well as substitute Salah before Luis Diaz hit the side-netting in the 84th minute.