LONDON: Everything is working for Liverpool. They defeated Tottenham for the fourth time in succession, including last season’s Champions League Final, to maintain their chasm of a Premier League lead. Their 61 points from a possible 63 is the best start ever by any club in the Big Five leagues.

Just to emphasise their good fortune Jurgen Klopp’s men won despite creating only four real chances and with a goal from Roberto Firmino after Liverpool were wrongly awarded a throw-in.

Liverpool’s 104 points from their past 38 Premier League games — another record — meant “nothing” to Klopp but rival manager Jose Mourinho offered as much praise as he will ever grant opponents. Mourinho told his press conference: “We are speaking about the best team in the world playing at the maximum of its potential.”

Mourinho’s words were aimed not only at the media but at rebuilding the fragile confidence of his own players and in the direction of RB Leipzig ahead of their Champions League clashes on February 18 in north London and March 10.

Tottenham are confronting a range of problems which Mourinho is meeting with tactical experiments and dipping into the academy while he waits for transfer reinforcements. Top-scoring captain Harry Kane and midfield anchor Moussa Sissoko are both out until April: England centre-forward Kane with a torn hamstring and the Frenchman with knee trouble.

Dele Alli is regaining form in the attacking centre of midfield while Lucas Moura and Son Heung-min are learning to enjoy the attacking freedom available without the need to seek out Kane all the time. But Danny Rose in not the attacking wingback of last season and Christian Eriksen is distracted by a possible imminent move to Internazionale.

Tottenham are close to the £28m purchase of Poland striker Krzysztof Piatek from Milan to fill the Kane gap. They also hope to sign Portugal midfielder Gedson Fernandes, 21, on an 18-month loan from Benfica. But Mourinho is desperate for more time on the training ground with his players after the hectic holiday schedule.

Meanwhile Klopp is growing bored with talk of records. He greeted the latest landmarks by saying: “I try to respond in an appropriate way but when somebody told me I didn’t feel anything. I am in football for 50 years or so and if somebody would have told me that would ever happen I would probably have said it’s not possible.

“I don’t know exactly what is wrong with me. It’s obviously exceptional but we didn’t think for a second about it before the game. After the game somebody had to remind me about it. At the moment, I can just say what we try to do. We have a lot tough games to play, the next one especially tough [at home to Manchester United].”