Reds edge Whites in seven goal thriller.
Liverpool 4 (Salah pen 4, 33, pen 88, van Dijk 20)
Leeds United 3 (Harrison 12, Bamford 30, Klich 66)
Liverpool: Alisson, Robertson, van Dijk, Gomez, Alexander-Arnold (Matip 89), Wijnaldum, Henderson (Jones 66), Keita (Fabinho 58), Firmino, Mane, Salah. Subs not used: Adrian, Milner, Minamino, Origi.
Leeds: Meslier, Ayling, Koch, Struijk, Dallas, Phillips, Klich (Shackleton 81), Hernandez (Roberts 62), Harrison, Costa, Bamford (Rodrigo 62). Subs not used: Casilla, Poveda, Alioski, Casey.
Booked: Firmino (Liverpool)
Referee: M. Oliver
Leeds United’s return to the Premier League produced a classic, but the Whites were narrowly defeated 4-3 by reigning champions Liverpool at Anfield.
Leeds made the worst possible start to the match, when Robin Koch conceded what seemed to be a harsh penalty after the ball hit his arm after deflecting off his foot and Mo Salah made no mistake from the spot.
After seeing a Helder Costa goal ruled out for offside, Leeds hit back when Kalvin Phillips’ pass sent Jack Harrison down the wing and he superbly cut inside and drove forwards, before smashing the ball past Allison at the Kop End.
Liverpool went back in front in the 20th minute from an Andy Robertson corner, with Dutch centre-back Virgil van Dijk heading a powerful effort on target which Meslier was unable to keep out.
Leeds almost levelled straight away when Luke Ayling sent Patrick Bamford through, but he was forced wide by Allison who came off his line and made himself big.
Meslier then made a fine save when Robertson's cross deflected off Pascal Struijk and was heading in, but for the fabulous reflexes of the Frenchman.
Jordan Henderson forced Meslier into a decent stop from range, before Leeds once again equalised. Stuart Dallas played a long ball forward looking for Patrick Bamford and a mistake from van Dijk allowed the striker in, to slot home past Allison.
Sadio Mane saw a shot well saved from close range, whilst Helder Costa saw a penalty appeal turned away as the hosts went in ahead at the break.
Half time: Liverpool 3-2 Leeds United
The hosts started brightly after the break and Meslier was twice forced into action, first denying Georgino Wijnaldum’s strike and Salah as he looked to race through on goal.
Trent Alexander-Arnold then played a low corner into the box and Salah saw a strike well blocked, before van Dijk headed over the resulting set-piece.
Just before the hour mark Leeds saw a second goal chalked off by the offside flag. Harrison went through and lifted the ball over Allison, with Alexander-Arnold heading into his own net in an attempt to clear, but Harrison was adjudged to have mistimed his run.
Leeds again got level in the 66th minute though. Mateusz Klich played the ball out to Costa who drove a ball into the box which found Klich and he took one touch to control before firing a superb volley into the back of the net.
Liverpool had the chance to go back in front when a cross fell to Salah, but he fired over, whilst at the other end Phillips curled a free-kick just inches wide of the top left corner.
With 12 minutes to go, van Dijk saw a header ruled out at a corner due to a foul in the build-up, whilst Alexander-Arnold saw a cross-cum-shot go just over.
Ayling made a great block to deny Robert Firmino’s shot, but there was late heartache for Leeds, when Rodrigo brought down Fabinho and Michael Oliver awarded Liverpool a second penalty of the afternoon, with Salah sending Meslier the wrong way to complete his hat-trick and secure the hosts all three points.
Full time: Liverpool 4-3 Leeds United