Liverpool's luck in, West Ham lose again

Leicester defender Wout Faes has twice put through his own net at Anfield to hand Liverpool a 2-1 victory which moved them within touching distance of the top four.

And when the Belgian, in his first season at the club after a Stg 15 million ($A27m) move from Reims, thought his embarrassment could not get any worse he was taunted by second-half chants of 'shoot' from the Kop whenever he touched the ball.

The 24-year-old's calamitous seven-minute spell leading up to halftime handed Liverpool a lifeline they barely deserved after comedic defending of their own had allowed Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall to waltz down the middle of the pitch unopposed to score from Leicester's first attack.

Both teams and sets of fans had come together before kick-off to celebrate the life of Pele, and also former Reds striker David Johnson, but there was little to reflect the Brazilian icon's 'beautiful game' in a chaotic first half.

Liverpool's holding midfielder Fabinho was left out of the side due to the imminent birth of his first child and his absence was felt inside four minutes after some amateurish defending.

When Dewsbury-Hall picked up the ball 50 yards out he had only Ayoze Perez ahead of him 10 yards offside but having easily brushed off Jordan Henderson he used his teammate as a useful decoy, running through unopposed to clip a shot over bewildered goalkeeper Alisson.

It was the seventh time in 2022 Jurgen Klopp's side had conceded in the opening five minutes.

The unconvincing Reds were level on 38 minutes, when Faes sliced his attempted clearance from Trent Alexander-Arnold's low cross in at the far post.

Seven minutes later, the back-tracking Faes hammered the ball into his own net again, after Darwin Nunez's effort came back off the woodwork.

"He's a strong character, and he will get over that this evening," Leicester manager Brendan Rodgers said.

Four successive league victories have moved Liverpool within two points of fourth-placed Tottenham.

"It's all about getting three points and trying to get into a position in the league where we feel like we need to be," the Reds' Alexander-Arnold said.

"These are the ones that you look back on and know that you needed to win it. Whether you win well or ugly, it doesn't really matter."

In London, West Ham were booed off after a fifth successive Premier League defeat, 2-0 at home to Brentford.

Goals from Ivan Toney - who was later stretchered off after landing awkwardly - and Josh Dasilva did the damage for the Bees.

Hammers boss David Moyes last week insisted his side were not in a relegation battle, but he will have to revise that opinion - if results elsewhere go against them over the weekend they could be bottom of the table on New Year's Day.

"We played well today," Moyes insisted.

"The goals were completely against the run of play, we've lost two goals to throw-ins. We made a lot of opportunities, we just couldn't take them."

- with AP