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Luis Suarez celebrated his new contract at Liverpool with two first-half goals to send the Reds to the top of the Premier League.
Suarez had already served notice of his intent with early chances, so it came as no surprise when he volleyed home Jordan Henderson's clipped ball into the area in the 25th minute.
The Uruguay international grabbed his second on the stroke of halftime to effectively seal the three points.
Raheem Sterling was also on target—with a great assist by Suarez—in the opening 45 minutes as the Reds took a three-goal lead into the interval.
It was another world-class display by Suarez, and BT Sport analyst and former Liverpool striker Michael Owen used his Twitter feed (@themichaelowen) to say, "Heading home from Anfield having witnessed another master class from Suarez."
Owen hits the nail on the head. Liverpool supporters must have been in dreamland after the South American committed his long-term future to the club.
After several years of underachievement, Anfield is buzzing again with Suarez the fulcrum of the team.
However, the trip to Manchester City on Boxing Day will provide a real examination of Liverpool's Premier League title credentials.
Jordon Mutch pulled a goal back for the Welsh club in the 58th minute when he cushioned a header beyond Simon Mignolet, but Cardiff could not add another to leave Liverpool sweating.
However, Cardiff manager Malky Mackay oversaw a much-improved performance by his team in the second period in what could be his final match with the Bluebirds.
The future of the Cardiff boss has been in doubt this week after a breakdown in his relationship with club owner Vincent Tan. But if this was to be Mackay's last match in charge, it could not have been a worse start, as Liverpool dominated the opening half.
But Mackay clearly gave a team talk to remember, as his players produced a much-improved second-half display.
The visiting fans stayed behind after the match to voice their support for Mackay, after the Scot had left the field to applause from both sets of fans at Anfield.
After the game, Mackay insisted he would not walk away from the club, as Alex Richards of the Daily Mirror reported:
I reiterate 100% that I absolutely will not be resigning from the football club.
I am a proud man to lead this team. Why would I want to leave?
That is something you will have to ask other people.
On target: 7-3