Antonio Conte's side increase their lead at the top
But after a battle which finished honours even and was kept that way only by a fine late penalty save from Simon Mignolet, the truth lay somewhere in between.
One point was certainly more use to Chelsea than to Liverpool who finished the night where they started, 10 points behind a side looking increasingly like the champions-elect.
But the manner of the fight and spirit shown by Liverpool typified by a late spot-kick save from the red hot boot of Diego Costa, did much to blow away the memories of a miserable month.
The pervading sense that last night’s game represented the make-or-break point of Liverpool’s season almost certainly exaggerated the seriousness of their plight.
As Klopp pointed out in his programme notes beforehand, 45 points from 22 games hardly represents disaster rather a “strong base or foundation” from which to tackle the last 16 games of their campaign.
Yet it was a base which they failed to build on early last night.
Jurgen Klopp's side fought back from a goal down at Anfield
Klopp made nine changes from the side beaten by Wolves in the FA Cup on Saturday and welcomed back Sadio Mane from African Nations Cup duty, albeit on the bench.
The initial signs were good with Liverpool starting with vigour, bossing the opening exchanges and enjoying the lions’ share of possession.
Georginio Wijnaldum nearly made the initial dominance tell with a rasping shot from 20 yards out after just 12 minutes but Thibaut Courtois proved equal to his effort, diving to his left and making an easy parry. For all Antonio Conte’s hopping about on the sideline, his players looked happy to soak up the pressure.
They did not even break forward until have so much as a break until 20 minutes were on the clock.
Yet as the half wore on the breaks started to build and it was another rapier counter from Eden Hazard which led to the opening goal.
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If it was a goal which came against the run of play Liverpool and one which came with no little controversy, the Reds contributed to their own downfall not once but twice.
With Hazard racing on a diagonal slant towards the left corner of the penalty area, first Adam Lallana’s clumsy challenge, bundling into his back, gave Chelsea a free-kick.
Chelsea player ratings against Liverpool
Tue, January 31, 2017
Express Sport brings you Chelsea's player ratings from their clash with Liverpool
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Thibaut Courtois – 6.5
Then, with Mignolet, still getting back into position after aligning his wall, David Luiz took up Mark Clattenburg’s invitation, raced up and arrowed the ball past the wall and inside the near post.
It was a goal which Klopp’s men could have few complaints about given the referee had blown for the free-kick to be taken.
But it added to a sense of injustice from 45 minutes play which had largely taken place in Chelsea’s half of the field.
Liverpool were lucky not to concede a second from a free kick in a similar area on the half-hour mark.
This time Hazard curled the ball into the six yard area but the outstretched boots of both Luiz and Nemanja Matic just failed to connect.
This time a grateful Mignolet punched the ball away.
Simon Mignolet saved Diego Costa's late penalty
Liverpool came out punching hard after the break and really should have drawn level after five minutes only for Firmino to fluff his lines after a neat interchange from Lallana and Wijanldum on the right side of the Chelsea area saw the ball spill to him in acres of space 13 yards out.
His shot was wild.
Liverpool were level just short of the hour mark and it was a goal which brought the stadium to fever pitch.
There appeared little immediate danger when a long crossfield ball from Henderson arced towards the left byline but Milner managed to keep the move alive and head back across goal and the Dutch midfielder outmuscled Luiz to direct a firm header under Courtois’s left hand.
Chelsea thought they had the match won when Costa was clipped by Joel Matip on 77 minutes and Clattenburg pointed to the spot.
But this time Mignolet was not only ready but guessed right diving to his right to turn the ball around the post.
Liverpool (4-3-3): Mignolet 4; Clyne 5, Lovren 6, Matip 5, Milner 6; Can 6, Henderson 6, Wijnaldum 8; Lallana 6 (Origi 90), Firmino 5, Coutinho 6 (Mane 75, 5). Booked: Milner, Henderson. Goal: Wijnaldum 57. NEXT UP: Hull (a), Sat PL
Chelsea (3-4-3): Courtois 5; Azpilicueta 5, Luiz 8, Cahill 6; Moses 6, Kante 7, Matic 6, Alonso 6; Willian 6 (Fabregas 83) , Costa 6, Hazard 6 (Pedro 72, 5). Booked: Willian. Goal: Luiz 24. NEXT UP: Arsenal (h), Sat PL.
Referee: M Clattenburg (Co Durham).