Liverpool crashed to a fourth defeat in their last seven games in all competitions when Wolves fired three goals against the Reds in a Premier League encounter on Saturday evening, a miserable run featuring only one win.
Jurgen Klopp’s side are languishing in 10th place, 10 points adrift of the top four amid their worst season of Klopp’s seven-year reign.
From the AMEX – Solly March scored a double as Brighton embarrassed Liverpool to move up to seventh in the Premier League, further harming the injury-stricken visitors’ Champions League qualification hopes with a 3-0 victory.
Brighton dominated the Reds and made the breakthrough at the start of the second half when March touched Kauro Mitoma’s cross past Alisson.
The winger scored a stunning second minutes later to give Roberto De Zerbi’s side victory, with Jurgen Klopp’s visitors failing to conjure any moments of attacking quality.
Substitute Danny Welbeck came on to net a brilliant third, gathering March’s flick before powering his shot into the back of the net.
The home side started on the front foot and zipped passes around, with Trent Alexander-Arnold clearing March’s off-target shot just over the bar. A header from Alexis Mac Allister – making his first club start since the World Cup – from the subsequent corner was held by Allison.
Liverpool were penned in for the majority of the opening 25 minutes, only booting the ball into space for attackers Mohamed Salah and Cody Gakpo to chase. Their first proper sighter fell for Gakpo, whose fiercely-struck shot was charged down.
Brighton continued to recycle possession, constantly finding routes through the middle of Liverpool’s midfield before going wide to Mitoma and March.
It was March who appeared to win his side a penalty after going through and being brought down by Alisson, but the video assistant referee spotted his offside run in the build-up.
Liverpool’s midfield trio of Fabinho, Thiago and Jordan Henderson failed to exert any control on proceedings and Brighton got the lead they deserved when March tapped in.
The brilliant Mitoma again worked his way into the box and scuffed the ball across goal to March, who had the simple task of poking past Alisson for the game’s opener. It was his first strike at home in the league since 2020, but he didn’t have to wait much longer for his second.
The 28-year-old has hit his best run of Premier League form ever and his second strike took him to four goals in his last three top flight appearances. He was played through by emerging striker Evan Ferguson before arrowing a left-footed strike into the far corner.
A host of changes from the visitors did produce decent openings for Gakpo and Harvey Elliott, but the points were wrapped up with a third from home substitute Danny Welbeck. March flicked on a throw into Welbeck, who beat both Konate and Joe Gomez before firing in the third.
Brighton are now up to seventh thanks to their fifth win in seven league games, while Liverpool slip to eighth.
Brighton player ratings GK: Robert Sanchez – 6/10 – On alert a few times to come out of his box and clean up, but not a busy day.
RB: Pascal Gross – 7/10 – Tucked infield pretty regularly and helped Brighton play through Liverpool’s lacking press.
CB: Lewis Dunk – 7/10 – Brought down Gakpo for a yellow card. Rarely had Liverpool attackers running in behind and used the ball well.
CB: Levi Colwill – 6/10 – Cool and calm when briefly put in tough spots in the first half.
LB: Pervis Estupinan – 7/10 – Bombed forward to provide Mitoma with more options in atack.
CM: Moises Caicedo – 7/10 – Constantly picked up loose possession and quickly asserted himself against Liverpool’s ageing midfield.
CM: Alexis Mac Allister – 7/10 – Combative, played cheeky passes around the corner and in tight spaces. Straight back into the flow on his first start since the World Cup.
RW: Solly March – 9/10 – Has hit form in recent weeks but this was an all-time career best performance from March. He gambled to get into the middle for his first strike and produced a brilliant finish to seal the points. Assisted Welbeck later with a header.
AM: Adam Lallana – 7/10 – Liverpool’s centre backs couldn’t decide who should pick up Lallana and he made use of the space, playing passes around the box to keep Brighton’s attacks flowing.
LW: Kaoro Mitoma – 8/10 – Slowed down and sped up out wide, constantly keeping Alexander-Arnold guessing. Deserved the assist for March, even if it was slightly scuffed.
ST: Evan Ferguson – 7/10 – Provided a physical contest Liverpool’s defence struggled with. Good pass played in March for his second.
Substitutes Joel Veltman (66′ for Lallana) – 6/10 – A more conservative switch which paid off.
Danny Welbeck (66′ for Ferguson) – 8/10 – Added pace to Brighton’s counter attacks and sealed the win with a brilliant effort after collecting March’s header.
Jeremy Sarmiento (83′ for Mac Allister) – N/A
Tariq Lamptey (90′ for Mitoma) – N/A
Adam Webster (90′ for Dunk) – N/A
Manager Roberto De Zerbi – 8/10 – Got his set-up spot on, exposing Liverpool’s ageing players and targeting their weaknesses out wide.
Liverpool player ratings (4-3-3) GK: Alisson – 5/10 – Almost conceded a penalty but saved by VAR intervention. A couple of saves but not at his intimidating best.
RB: Trent Alexander-Arnold – 3/10 – Cleared a shot going wide over the bar. Saw Mitoma run past him again and again and Liverpool were eventually made to pay for it.
CB: Joel Matip – 3/10 – Slid in hard on Mitoma for a booking. Sloppy pass led to March’s opener.
CB: Ibrahima Konate – 4/10 – Slightly more composed than Matip but looked similarly at sea with Ferguson at times. Lost March for the third.
LB: Andy Robertson – 5/10 – Was high up the pitch when Matip gave the ball away, allowing March to exploit his absence. Probably the best of Liverpool’s defenders but hardly a standout performance.
CM: Jordan Henderson – 3/10 – Frustrated late tackle on Caicedo saw him booked. Off the pace.
CM: Fabinho – 2/10 – Couldn’t stop Brighton playing straight through Liverpool’s midfield and was positionally unaware throughout the contest.
CM: Thiago – 3/10 – Liverpool only started getting more of the ball late on, by which time is was a little late for Thiago to make an impact.
RW: Mohamed Salah – 4/10 – Had to chase long balls from the outset and didn’t get many scoring opportunities. Cut a frustrated figure.
ST: Cody Gakpo – 4/10 – First Premier League appearance and will hope for much improvement. Scarcely involved except for one blocked shot.
LW: Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain – 3/10 – Only playing because of the injury crisis across Liverpool’s front three.
Substitutes Ben Doak (68′ for Oxlade-Chamberlain) – 6/10 – Showed some vigour but the result had already been sealed.
Naby Keita (68′ for Fabinho) – 5/10 – Struggled similarly to Fabinho.
Harvey Elliott (69′ for Henderson) – 5/10 – Dragged one good opening wide when well placed.
Joe Gomez (69′ for Matip) – 5/10 – Couldn’t help clean up Liverpool’s poor defending.
Manager Jurgen Klopp – 4/10 – Needed a more dynamic presence in midfield from the outset and saw his players overrun. Hands are tied a fair bit by injury but this defeat felt bleak.
Recently, Klopp confessed that he had no idea how much Bellingham would cost, admitting the teenager is a truly special talent.
“I don’t like to talk about money when you talk about a player like him. Everyone can see he is just exceptional,” said the Liverpool manager.
“If you mention to someone who has no clue about football, or who knows about football and has not watched it for a while, ‘How old do you think Jude Bellingham is?’, I don’t think anyone would get even close to his age. “They would say 28 or 29 because he plays so mature. He played an exceptional World Cup. Absolutely exceptional.
“With all the things he has and things he can improve, to describe him I would say the things he can do are difficult to learn, and the things he can improve are easy to learn.
“So, yes, he is a really good player. What can I say? I have thought that already for two or three years since he had his breakthrough at Dortmund. Everybody knew already but I have no idea what that means for the money side of it.
“I really think if we all want to do him a favour then we do not talk too much about money. I mean that from an England point of view. Do not throw any hurdles in his development.”
Goals from Mohamed Salah, Darwin Nunez and Harvey Elliott earned Liverpool a comfortable 3-0 win over Ajax in the UEFA Champions League on Wednesday evening.
The Reds put in a professional performance in the Johan Cruyff Arena against a spirited Ajax side who were made to pay for missing a number of chances in the opening 30 minutes.
Inside the opening two minutes Ajax came agonisingly close to opening the scoring. Brian Brobbey laid the ball off to Steven Berghuis inside of the Liverpool penalty are but, after drifting past Andy Robertson with ease, the forward could only find the foot of the post with his subsequent strike on goal.
Berghuis came close once again five minutes later, capitalising on a loose bit of play from Trent Alexander-Arnold to curl a great side-footed effort just wide of the left post.
Liverpool finally started to show some signs of life around the half-hour mark, pinning Ajax back in their defensive third with some controlled possession. This spell of possession almost culminated in a goal for Robertson, who fired off of the side-netting from a tight angle after being played through on goal by Roberto Firmino. Also Read: Best Of Neymar & Hazard Immediately after that chance, Ajax created – and spurned – and even better one. Following some great number nine play from Brobbey, the ball found its way out to Dusan Tadic on the left of the penalty area. The Serbian, after cutting inside, drilled the ball past Alisson but not Trent Alexander-Arnold who had tracked back well to make a vital block.
The home side were made to rue that missed chance on the stroke of half-time when Mohamed Salah gave Liverpool a 1-0 lead. The Egyptian brilliantly looped the ball over the onrushing Remko Pasveer on the half-volley from just outside the penalty area after being found by Jordan Henderson.
Moments later it was so nearly two, with Darwin Nunez hitting the post when he really should have scored after being gifted a chance to tap into an open net from six yards after being squared the ball by the unselfish Firmino.
Nunez would make amends at the start of the second when he was able to double the Reds’ lead. The summer signing headed home a wicked set piece delivery from Robertson to spare his own blushes in the 48th minute.
Just two minutes later Harvey Elliott was on hand to make it 3-0. The English youngster was played through on the right hand side of the penalty by a deft pass from Salah, before rifling the ball into the roof of the net from a tight angle. A great finish from the youngster.
Despite going three behind, Ajax continued to press forward with real intent and came close to grabbing a consolation goal through substitute Kenneth Taylor – who ballooned over the bar after a sweeping team move.
1. Liverpool (4-3-3) GK – Alisson Becker – 5/10 – Ajax created chances but actually never forced the Liverpool number one into a notable save.
RB – Trent Alexander-Arnold – 7/10 – Made a goal-saving block in the first half.
CB – Joe Gomez – 6/10 – Solid performance.
CB – Virgil van Dijk – 4/10 – Still not quite at his best and was bullied by Brian Brobbey on occasion. He’ll be happy with the clean sheet though.
LB – Andy Robertson – 8/10 – Brilliant. overall performance from the Scottish captain. Bagged an assist and everything. Top stuff.
CM – Harvey Elliott – 7/10 – Scored his second ever Champions League goal in wonderful fashion. Really tidy performance. Also Read: 15 Football Moments That Will Leave You Wowing | Highlights CM – Fabinho – 6/10 – A decent performance in the second half after struggling with the pace of the game in the opening stages.
CM – Jordan Henderson – 7/10 – Great play in the lead up to Salah’s opener.
RW – Mohamed Salah – 8/10 – Lovely dinked finish to give Liverpool the lead and an equally lovely pass to set up the third.
ST – Roberto Firmino – 7/10 – Liverpool are a much, much better team when he’s on form. He was on Wednesday evening.
LW – Darwin Nunez – 6/10 – He missed an open goal in the first half, but was able to find the net in the second with a fantastic header.
SUB – Curtis Jones – 5/10 – Decent when he came on.
SUB – Fabio Carvalho – N/A.
SUB – James Milner – 5/10 – Helped kill the game.
SUB – Stefan Bajcetic – N/A.
SUB – Konstantinos Tsmikas – N/A.
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A number of Liverpool’s Premier League rivals are keeping close tabs on Naby Keita’s contract talks as they entertain the idea of taking him on a free transfer at the end of the season, 90min understands.
The midfielder has not actually played this season due to a series of niggling injuries, which has been a huge frustration for Liverpool and Jurgen Klopp given the Guinean’s form last season and their other medical woes.
Keita was outstanding for the Reds last term, especially towards the end of the season with many tipping him to start the Champions League final against Real Madrid. However, Jordan Henderson and Thiago were picked ahead of him.
During the summer, Keita’s agents made a concerted push for Liverpool to tie him down to a new deal before the transfer window closed, but when it became clear this wasn’t going to happen, it was made known that he wasn’t happy with the situation.
The situation remains deadlocked, and Keita’s camp know that interest in his services is strong both from within the Premier League and abroad despite his injury record.
The chance to land Keita on a free is hugely appealing and 90min understands that Chelsea, Arsenal and Tottenham are among those contemplating an offer.
Chelsea could consider moving on from the likes of N’Golo Kante and Jorginho while Denis Zakaria does not have a long-term future at the club, and the chance to bolster their ranks with a free agent is believed to appeal to the Blues.
Arsenal and Tottenham could also both do with Keita as he would add some real depth to both their thin squads.
There is also major interest in Keita from Germany, Italy, Spain and France should he decide to leave the Premier League, and he would be able to negotiate a free transfer abroad from January.
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Jurgen Klopp has hailed Darwin Nunez’s first goal for Liverpool at Anfield following the 1-0 win over West Ham in the Premier League.
In a tightly-contest affair – one in which West Ham’s Jarrod Bowen missed a penalty kick – Nunez’s first half header proved to be the difference for the Reds. After a shaky start to the season, Liverpool have now managed to beat two of the better teams in the league (Man City and West Ham) in the space of five days.
Key to that turnaround has been the improved performances of marquee signing Nunez, who has three goals in his last three starts for his new club.
Speaking to the club’s official website, Klopp addressed Nunez’s first home goal for the club, stating: “It is important. He has scored now a couple of times in the last few games. He arrived 100 per cent, now even with numbers, which is fine.”
Nunez was taken off with an apparent injury in the 57th minute of the game, but Klopp has assured fans that is nothing to worry about: “He felt a little bit the muscles at half-time but it was all fine and after five minutes [of the second half] I was just a bit concerned about long sprints for him and balls where he stretches his legs.
“I thought, ‘Come on, we cannot take that risk’ and that’s why we changed. I think we caught it at the right moment.”
Roberto Firmino has hailed the impact of Liverpool teammate Fabio Carvalho after his summer arrival from Fulham.
The Reds have made a slow start to the Premier League campaign, but the 20-year-old has made a big impression at Anfield after netting in consecutive wins over Bournemouth and Newcastle.
And Firmino, who has entered his seventh season at the Merseyside club, has tipped the youngster to be a big part of Liverpool’s future.
“I confess that I had already watched some of his games before coming to Liverpool, so I was already impressed by the way he played,” the Brazilian told Noticias ao Minuto. “He’s an ace, he’s a great player and now he’s also a very close friend.
“We are happy to have him here at Liverpool and I know he will help us a lot, with assists, goals and also his character on the pitch.”
Liverpool parted with a fee in excess of £7m for the 20-year-old over the summer and he instantly repaid the faith shown in him by manager Jurgen Klopp with a stoppage time winner against Newcastle at Anfield.
Carvalho suffered a dead leg in last weekend’s goalless draw with Everton in the Merseyside derby, although Liverpool are hopeful that this weekend’s postponement of their clash with Wolves will afford the youngster more recovery time.
“Fabio got a massive dead leg, which caused the muscle some problems, so it was no chance,” Klopp explained.
“He’s walking now normal, but there was no chance to train until now.
“We hope now every day will get better and he will be ready for the weekend, but I’m not 100% sure.”
Jurgen Klopp has insisted he is not worried about his job security despite Liverpool’s struggles so far this season.
The Reds have won just two of their first seven games this campaign, and their underlying issues were deeply exposed in Wednesday’s 4-1 hammering at Napoli in the Champions League.
After their own difficult beginning to the new term, Chelsea shockingly parted ways with Thomas Tuchel and are set to bring in Graham Potter as his replacement. But Klopp is not concerned that Liverpool will similarly replace him.
When asked if he’s worried about getting the sack, Klopp replied: “Not really. Our owners are rather calm and expect me to sort the situation and not think someone else will.”
Klopp is now into his seventh season at Anfield and has never lasted longer than that time frame at any club before.
He lasted seven years in his first managerial job at Mainz, being relegated from the Bundesliga in his penultimate campaign and failing to win promotion in his final year.
The German was also at Borussia Dortmund for seven years, and while he won two Bundesliga titles and reached the Champion League final in that time, BVB strangely imploded in his final season, spending several weeks bottom of the table before eventually finishing seventh
Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp gave a damning assessment of his team’s heavy 4-1 defeat to Napoli in the Champions League on Wednesday night, admitting the Reds need to ‘reinvent’ themselves and improve in ‘pretty much everything’.
It was an incredibly lacklustre performance from Liverpool as a team.
Joe Gomez was so poor in the first half that he was withdrawn at the interval, while Trent Alexander-Arnold barely seemed interested. Fabinho and Virgil van Dijk were also unusually poor, while Klopp even lost patience with Mohamed Salah an hour into the contest.
“It looks like we need to reinvent ourselves. There’s a lot of things lacking. We have to try to find a set up to be much better in pretty much everything,” Klopp conceded in post-match media duties.
“Not that difficult to explain when you saw the game. Napoli played a really good game and we didn’t. That’s the first explanation. Not compact defensively or offensively. Until Thiago entered the pitch I can’t remember one counter-pressing situation. We were just too wide.”
Looking ahead to the weekend, Klopp also said, “In three days, we play Wolves. When they saw the game, they cannot stop laughing probably. They were probably thinking that’s the perfect moment [to play Liverpool]. I would say it’s the perfect moment.”
After a mixed bag of results in pre-season, the defeat to Napoli means that Liverpool have failed to win in five of their eight games so far in 2022/23 across all competitions – including victory in the Community Shield against Manchester City at the end of July
Real Madrid beat Liverpool 1-0 on Saturday to complete a remarkable Champions League campaign with a record-extending 14th title in the elite event and a milestone for their coach Carlo Ancelotti.
Vinicius Junior scored the winner in the 59th minute at the Stade de France for the Spanish champions who earlier had a goal from tournament top scorer Karim Benzema disallowed for offside.
They also had to thank their goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois who made several first-half big saves against Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane, pushing the latter’s shot against the left post during Liverpool’s best spell, and was also unbeatable after the break.
It was Real’s first title in the event since 2018 – when they also beat Liverpool – and showed their remarkable spirit that had already seen them beat Paris Saint-Germain, title holders Chelsea and Manchester City against the odds in previous rounds.
Ancelotti became the first coach with four titles, twice with AC Milan 2003 and 2007 and twice with Real 2014 and 2022.
The 2007 and 2022 wins came against Liverpool as Jürgen Klopp’s side failed to get a seventh Champions trophy at the end of a season that also saw them just missing out in the Premier League while winning the FA Cup and the League Cup.
The action started 37 minutes behind schedule, with organizers first naming security concerns and then late arrival of fans while news reports spoke of chaotic scenes outside the arena as fans queued for hours and some allegedly tried to get in without tickets.
Liverpool almost drew first blood in the 15th minute but Courtois dove to his left to keep out Salah’s short range effort off Trent Alexander-Arnold’s low cross.
It was all Liverpool now, and five minutes on, Courtois just managed to push a low shot from Sadio Mane against the left post.
Real took a while to recover, and Liverpool needed to be on their guard twice against Vinicius Junior – while in-between Salah headed into the arms of Courtois from a promising position.
That was Liverpool’s fifth attempt on target while Real found the net on their first attempt shortly before halftime, only to have Benzema’s strike disallowed for offside after a long video review.
David Alaba played a long ball over the top to the French striker who then ran out of space against Alisson Becker but got a second chance after Liverpool failed to clear and hit home behind the goalkeeper after Federico Valverde’s effort was deflected by Fabinho – with the video assistant seemingly deciding Valverde’s ball was a pass to Benzema and Fabinho’s touch no proper clearance.
It was a huge let-off for Liverpool who however used the break to regroup and were the livelier side again – only to really fall behind just before the hour against clinical.
Valverde had a determined run into the penalty area and played a low ball toward the far post where Vinicius Junior sneaked in behind Alexander-Arnold for an easy side-footed tap-in.
Liverpool fought for the equalizer but found no way past Courtois whose biggest effort was saving Salah’s shot from point-blank range with his upper arm in the 82nd.
Sadio Mane has vowed to give ‘the answer fans want to hear’ about his future on Saturday after the Champions League final.
Unlike Mohamed Salah, the Senegal winger recently declined to commit his immediate future to Liverpool, leading some fans to fear that he could be sold this summer amid interest from Bundesliga champions Bayern Munich as he approaches the final 12 months of his contract.
Despite the uncertainty, sources have confirmed to 90min that Liverpool still expect to tie Mane down to a new contract this summer, and the 30-year-old has now dropped a hint that he could be close to extending.
“I think the answer I can give you now is I feel very good,” said Mane.
“I am fully focused on Saturday’s game, that is the answer I must give before the final. But come back to me on Saturday and I will give you the best answer you want to hear, for sure. It’s special. I will give you all you want to hear then.
“I love what I am doing and I sacrifice myself all the time. I am working hard every single day on the pitch and in the gym and I get better and better, that’s the most important. I am trying my best to help the team.”
The mystique surrounding these comments was not shared by Salah, who made it abundantly clear that he plans to stay at Liverpool next season, although the Egyptian did try to dodge questions about signing a new contract.
Salah wanted to keep the focus on Saturday’s Champions League final against Real Madrid, and Mane chose to do the same.
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“What I want to say now is I am fully focused on the Champions League and winning it, which is far more important for me and the Liverpool fans,” Mane said.
“I will do everything absolutely possible to win the game for Liverpool.
“I think we all forgot about what happened in 2018. For sure Real Madrid were the better team then and deserved to win the game, but it is going to be a different game.”
Liverpool have finally completed the signing of Fulham forward Fabio Carvalho after failing in a bid to bring the 19-year-old to Anfield in January, the Premier League runners-up announced on Monday.
The Portuguese teenager, who is understood to have signed a five-year contract, will officially join the Anfield club on July 1.
Carvalho, out of contract at the end of June, was set for a move four months ago on deadline day when a £5 million ($6.3 million) deal was agreed with the Championship winners but the transfer window closed without a medical and formal paperwork being concluded.
Liverpool have reportedly agreed to pay extra in add-ons and attach a 20 percent sell-on clause.
Carvalho played a key role in Fulham’s promotion back to the Premier League, scoring 10 goals and providing eight assists in 36 games as Marco Silva’s side won the Championship title.
He made his debut for Portugal U21s in March, having previously represented England at youth level.
Carvalho’s arrival will add another fresh face to Liverpool’s dynamic forward line, already boosted by the arrival of Luis Diaz in January.
Long-serving Belgium forward Divock Origi has not played enough matches to trigger a contract extension and was given a send-off at Anfield after Sunday’s 3-1 victory over Wolves.
Origi missed the match with a muscle injury and Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp confirmed he had played his last game for the club as he would not be fit for Saturday’s Champions League final against Real Madrid
It was a thrilling end to the 2021/22 Premier League season, with 90min’s final day live blog capturing all the many twists and turns of an incredible afternoon.
Manchester City clinched their fourth Premier League title in five seasons as they overturned a shock 2-0 deficit to beat Aston Villa at the Etihad 3-2 – their three goals coming in a remarkable five-minute spell.
Liverpool’s 3-1 win over Wolves at Anfield was rendered irrelevant, though Mohamed Salah did share the Golden Boot spoils with Tottenham’s Son Heung-min – the pair ended the season on 23 goals each.
Tottenham sealed a place in next season’s Champions League at the expense of Arsenal with a convincing 5-0 win over Norwich – the Gunners beat Everton 5-1 at the Emirates Stadium. Manchester United will join them in the Europa League despite losing at Crystal Palace, as West Ham slipped up at Brighton.
In the relegation fight, Burnley were the team to lose their Premier League status – a 2-1 defeat to Newcastle sending them down to the Championship after Leeds’ 2-1 win over Brentford.
Premier League full-time scores Arsenal 5-1 Everton Brentford 1-2 Leeds Brighton 3-1 West Ham Burnley 1-2 Newcastle Chelsea 2-1 Watford Crystal Palace 1-0 Manchester United Leicester 4-1 Southampton Liverpool 3-1 Wolves Manchester City 3-2 Aston Villa Norwich 0-5 Tottenham
The final table 1. Manchester City – P38, 93pts (+73GD) 2. Liverpool – P38, 92pts (+68GD) 3. Chelsea – P38, 74pts (+43GD) 4. Tottenham – P38, 71pts (+29GD) 5. Arsenal – P38, 69pts (+13GD) 6. Manchester United – P38. 58pts (0GD) 7. West Ham – P38, 56pts (+9GD)
Jurgen Klopp has heaped praise on the fringe players in his Liverpool squad after they led the Reds to a 2-1 win over Southampton on Tuesday.
With a Champions League final around the corner and Mohamed Salah, Virgil van Dijk and Fabinho already nursing injuries, Klopp was in no mood to risk his other stars and made nine changes to his lineup for the trip to St Mary’s.
It threatened to backfire after Nathan Redmond’s early opener but Liverpool were on top throughout and goals from Takumi Minamino and Joel Matip steered the team to a 2-1 victory which takes the Premier League title race to the final day of the season.
Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp has conceded that beating Manchester City to the Premier League on the final day of the season ‘unlikely’ following victory over Southampton on Tuesday.
Having closed the gap on leaders City to just one point with the comeback win at St Mary’s, the Reds ensured the title race remains alive for the last round of fixtures.
But to leapfrog City, Klopp’s side must beat Wolves and hope that Pep Guardiola’s team fail to take maximum points at home against Aston Villa.
“Of course, [winning the Premier League title] is unlikely because City play at home against Aston Villa, who play only on Thursday [against Burnley],” Klopp told BBC Sport.
“But it is football. I think the time when City became champion [in 2019] it was because of 11 millimetres. If someone wants us to be champion then we have to win first and Aston Villa need to get a point at City. It is possible, not likely but possible. That is enough.”
It also means that Liverpool’s chances of an unprecedented quadruple are now slim. The Reds have already lifted the League Cup and the FA Cup, as well having the Champions League final against Real Madrid still to play in a rematch of the 2018 showdown.
Speaking to Sky Sports after the final whistle at St Mary’s, captain Jordan Henderson reflected, “The aim was to take [the title race] to the end. We knew it would be difficult. A lot of changes. The lads were brilliant. They kept going right to the end and got the reward.
“We’ve done that really well all season, the lads who haven’t played as much as they’d like took their opportunity. You need everyone in a Premier League season. We’re so used to it. We’re constantly in ‘cup finals’ every game. It’s normal. You get on with it.
“We can all celebrate or relax at the end of the season after the Champions League final.”
Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp said he maintains belief that the Reds can beat Manchester City to the Premier League title and keep their hopes of a historic quadruple alive.
City extended their lead at the top of the table to three points and also boosted their goal difference to four better than Liverpool’s with a 5-0 thrashing of Newcastle on Sunday.
The Reds stumbled a day earlier when they were held 1-1 at home by Tottenham.
However, Klopp shrugged off suggestions that he should now focus on saving his players’ energies for facing Chelsea in the FA Cup final on Saturday and the Champions League final against Real Madrid on May 28.
“Until it’s not reachable anymore, why should we stop believing? That’s what we do,” said Klopp at his pre-match press conference ahead of Tuesday’s trip to Aston Villa.
“It is clear that it is not over, whatever happened, because we both have three games to play. And my concern is actually: how can we win our games?
“In an ideal world you win all the games and you are always in a great mood. A lot of times we have to respond on setbacks and that’s what we have to do.”
City boss Pep Guardiola claimed he felt the whole of England is behind Liverpool’s title bid.
Speaking shortly after the win over Newcastle, Guardiola said: “Everyone in this country supports Liverpool, the media and everyone.”
However, Klopp said he does not get that feeling with the hostile environment his side face on the road.
“I have no idea if the whole country is supporting us,” added Klopp. “It is not the feeling I get when we go to other places and play there, it is actually the opposite, but maybe he knows more about that than me.”
Liverpool are sure to have a fan in the manager of their next opposition.
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Liverpool’s Premier League title hopes suffered a huge blow even though they went top of the table as Tottenham clung on for a 1-1 draw at Anfield on Saturday.
The Reds edged ahead of Manchester City on goal difference, but the English champions can now afford to draw one of their remaining four games and still retain their title.
Pep Guardiola’s men can retake top spot and open up a three-point lead when they host Newcastle on Sunday.
A share of the spoils took Tottenham to within a point of fourth-placed Arsenal, but their chance of a top-four finish now also rely on the Gunners dropping points in two of their final four games.
Son Heung-min rounded off a brilliant team move to put Spurs in front on 56 minutes.
Luis Diaz’s deflected shot levelled 16 minutes from time, but Jurgen Klopp’s men failed to find a winner.
Twenty-one points separate the sides, but Spurs have made a habit of saving their best for the big occasion.
Antonio Conte’s men are unbeaten in all four meetings with City and Liverpool this season.
Liverpool did not start like a side fatigued by reaching the Champions League final in their 57th game of the season against Villarreal in midweek, as the intense press from the home side penned Tottenham in.
However, the visitors were first to seriously threaten when Alisson Becker had to be sharp off his line to prevent Harry Kane’s cross reaching Son and Rodrigo Bentancur fired the follow-up far too close to the Brazilian stopper.
Liverpool’s best efforts before the break came from set-pieces as Virgil van Dijk hit the crossbar, while Diaz also tested Hugo Lloris after being teed up by Sadio Mane.
Spurs also hit the woodwork in the first-half when Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg took aim from long range.
The second-half followed the same pattern, with Liverpool camped in the Tottenham half, but this time Spurs did pick them off on the counter-attack.
Kane was given time to assess his options and picked out Ryan Sessegnon who slid the ball across the box for Son to tap in his 20th Premier League goal of the season to move within two of Mohamed Salah.
It was the first time Liverpool have trailed at Anfield in a league match since February and Spurs could have doubled their lead had Son controlled another Sessegnon cross moments later.
Salah did his best to extend his advantage in the race for the Golden Boot and rescue the Reds’ title challenge only to be denied by a brilliant block from Ben Davies.
Diaz swung the match and the tie in midweek as Klopp’s men came from 2-0 down on the night to win 3-2 against Villarreal and reach a third Champions League final in five seasons.
The Colombian has been a sensational signing since arriving in January and made another contribution with a slice of fortune.
Diaz’s shot from outside the box took a huge deflection off Bentancur to wrong-foot Lloris.
But Liverpool will have to settle for a shot at cup glory unless City stumble as Tottenham held firm in the closing stages.
Klopp’s men, who have already lifted the League Cup, face Chelsea in the FA Cup final next weekend and then Real Madrid for the European Cup in Paris on May 28.
Jurgen Klopp has warned Liverpool that Tottenham forwards Harry Kane and Son Heung-min will pose a “massive” challenge for his quadruple-chasing team.
Klopp’s side, one point behind Premier League leaders Manchester City with four games left, can go top of the table if they beat Tottenham at Anfield on Saturday, with City facing Newcastle 24 hours later.
But fifth-placed Spurs are battling to finish in the top four and Reds boss Klopp is concerned about the potential damage that Kane and Son — with 43 goals between them in all competitions this season — could do.
“Tottenham have massive quality,” he said Friday. “Especially away from home, they are not too bothered about having the ball all the time, stuff like this. They defend compact and then obviously they have some of the best counter-attacking players in the world.
“Up front they have speed like crazy — Harry Kane, what a player, and obviously fits in that idea extremely well. There’s a blind understanding between them (Kane and Son) so I’d say it’s probably the biggest challenge for protection we face for a long time.”
Liverpool are on a high after sealing their place in the Champions League final against Real Madrid by beating Villarreal this week.
In contrast, City were left reeling by Real’s astonishing escape act in the other semi-final, eventually losing 6-5 on aggregate.
But Klopp is wary about writing off City too soon, expecting them to respond this weekend.
“City are good,” he said. “It was a massive blow for them, that was really harsh. I’ve had nights like that. It’s not cool, the next morning, not cool, but then there’s a moment you have to focus. They will be ready for Newcastle on Sunday.”
With the League Cup already in the trophy cabinet and an FA Cup final to come against Chelsea next weekend, Liverpool are in contention to become the first club to win all four major trophies in a single season.
Yet Klopp does not believe Liverpool will be favourites when they face 13-time European champions Real on May 28 in a repeat of the 2018 final won by the Spaniards.
“They are now the massive favourites with all the experience they have and all these kind of things,” said Klopp. “We are more experienced than we were, probably, but it’s obviously not to compare.
“They got through against PSG (Paris Saint-Germain), Chelsea and City. If you knock out these three guys, then you definitely deserve to be in the final.”
Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has confessed that his side’s defeat to Real Madrid in the Champions League semi-final has brought back memories of Barcelona’s loss to Chelsea at that stage in 2012.
City were on top for the vast majority of the two-legged tie and were just seconds away from a 5-3 aggregate victory, only for two late goals from Rodrygo to send the tie to extra-time, where Karim Benzema struck from the penalty spot to secure a final berth for Los Blancos.
It was a similar story back in 2012 when Guardiola’s Barcelona were clearly the stronger side but came undone against Chelsea, who snatched a 1-0 win in the first leg before a 2-2 draw at Camp Nou sent Roberto Di Matteo’s men through to the final.
“I’ve always had defeats in the Champions League, I’ve had defeats so tough,” Guardiola said post-match in Madrid. “Barcelona against Chelsea, when both games were exceptional and we could not reach the final.
“It’s tough for us, we cannot deny. We were so close to arrive at a Champions League final.”
Guardiola insisted that his side buckled under the pressure of the occasion and admitted things did not go to plan for City.
“We didn’t play good in the first half, we didn’t find out game, but that’s normal. In this competition, it’s normal,” he continued.
“The second half was much better…much, much better. After the goal, we controlled the game. Jack [Grealish] helped us to control the game, but unfortunately we could not finish when we were close.”
Sadio Mane’s representatives have been told by Liverpool that they will have to wait until the summer for a new contract offer, 90min understands.
30-year-old Mane is out of contract in 2023, though as yet he has not received an offer of a renewal by the Champions League finalists. An offer is set to arrive, however, in the coming months, once Liverpool’s season ends. The club are chasing an unprecedented quadruple.
Mane is in a similar boat to fellow Reds forward Mohamed Salah on the contract front, with the Egyptian also out of contract in 2023, though their demands differ. Salah is looking to be made the highest paid player at the club and his situation is far more uncertain as it stands.
Mane’s demands are not as drastic as those coming from Salah’s camp, though he is looking for a raise on his current terms.
Noble Reporters Media have been told that last year Mane’s representatives were asking for a deal that would take him ahead of Virgil van Dijk, who is currently the highest paid player at the club. The Dutchman is currently earning around £220,000 a week, though with yearly increments that figure will soon increase to close to £250,000.
It is believed Mane would like around £250,000 to £300,000 – which would make him the highest paid player out of the current squad.
Club owners Fenway Sports Group have so far been unwilling to meet Salah’s demands, and it remains to be seen to what extent they will be willing to negotiate with Mane.
FSG sanctioned the purchase of Luis Diaz in January from Porto and the Colombian has made an instant impact. The ownership now believe that Jurgen Klopp can transition the squad into the future following his confirmed contract extension to 2026 last week, though it could mean the team moves forward without either Mane or Salah – or even both.
Klopp insists he wants both Salah and Mane to stay long term, but he is leaving talks to FSG and those above him.
Sources insist to Noble Reporters Media that Mane does not want to leave Liverpool, but with little over 12 months left on his deal, other options may need to be considered ahead of time. Other options may be further explored if the offer from Liverpool is not what he wants
Real Madrid and Liverpool have both spoken with Monaco to register their interest in signing Aurelien Tchouameni, Noble Reporters Media understands.
The 22-year-old has been in fine form this season in Ligue 1 and is widely recognised as one of European football’s top midfield prospects.
Chelsea have long held an interest in signing Tchouameni, who joined Monaco from Bordeaux in January 2020, and were in talks last summer over a possible transfer – though they ultimately opted against making a move despite discussing a buy to loan deal.
Noble Reporters Media understands that Chelsea remain keen to agree a deal for Tchouameni, but not only will a deal be difficult to complete because of the club’s ongoing ownership issues, they now face competition from heavyweight duo Real Madrid and Liverpool.
The pair are both keen to bolster their midfield options – with one eye firmly on the future – and Noble Reporters Media can confirm they have made their interest in Tchouameni known to Monaco. But, at the time of writing, no bids have been lodged with the Principality outfit.
Real would ideally like to pay little more than the €40m they forked out for Eduardo Camavinga last summer, and Tchouameni is understood to be ‘intrigued’ by the prospect of playing in Madrid.
However, Noble Reporters Media has learned that Monaco intend to stand by their valuation of €60m and are likely to hold out for that price given the substantial interest in him.
Manchester United and Manchester City are also believed to be keeping tabs on Tchouameni’s situation – he has two years remaining on his Monaco contract – although they have other targets ahead of him on their summer shopping lists, while Bayern Munich and Atletico Madrid are also admirers
Liverpool held off a stirring comeback from Villarreal to reach the Champions League final on Tuesday as second-half goals from Fabinho, Luis Diaz and Sadio Mane secured a 5-2 aggregate victory.
Trailing 2-0 from the first leg, Villarreal sparked hopes of a remarkable turnaround in the return at the Estadio de la Ceramica after Boulaye Dia finished in the third minute and Francis Coquelin headed in another to level the tie at 2-2.
But Jurgen Klopp threw on Diaz for Diogo Jota at the interval to shake Liverpool into life and it worked, the visitors scoring three times in 12 minutes to kill off Villarreal’s revival and advance to their third Champions League final in five years.
Liverpool will await the winner of Real Madrid and Manchester City, who play their second leg at the Santiago Bernabeu on Wednesday, with City leading 4-3 from the opener last week.
Either City or Madrid will offer a sterner test than Villarreal, but after a chastening experience at Anfield last week, Unai Emery’s side delivered a spirited performance that rattled Liverpool and showed why they knocked out both Juventus and Bayern Munich to reach the semi-finals.
Liverpool were careless, perhaps complacent even, in the first half but sensational in the second, finding an intensity and pace Villarreal were simply unable to match.
Diaz, who started on the bench but was integral to the fightback, was excellent again and may soon be an automatic starter for Klopp.
A banner draped behind the Villarreal goal at one end read “90 minutes from our dream” while before kick-off the stadium announcer shouted “it’s possible, the comeback is possible!”
And if anyone inside the ground was still sceptical they were given an early injection of belief in the third minute as Pervis Estupinan swung in a cross from the left to Etienne Capoue at the back post.
Under pressure from Andy Robertson, Capoue skewed his finish horizontally, landing perfectly for the arriving Dia to sidefoot in.
Liverpool occasionally threatened on the break, with Mohamed Salah rolling Estupinan down the left and feeding Jota in the middle but Geronimo Rulli was quick to rush out and claw the ball away.
But Liverpool lacked their usual control and precision, with Alisson Becker booting the ball into touch before Naby Keita’s misplaced pass back to his own defence almost resulted in Giovani Lo Celso earning a penalty.
The second goal came four minutes before half-time as Pau Torres launched a long ball from deep for Capoue to run onto.
Capoue’s first touch cannoned away from him but he recovered, controlling and twisting away from Robertson before hanging up a superb cross with his left foot to the back post, where Coquelin climbed above Trent Alexander-Arnold and headed in.
Smarting The half-time whistle prompted huge cheers from the home fans, whose team were level in the tie, and a change from Klopp as Diaz replaced Jota.
Liverpool looked like a team smarting from a scolding after the break. They were rushing now to take throw-ins, eager to find the intensity they had previously lacked.
Alexander-Arnold’s deflected shot from distance looped onto the crossbar. Diaz volleyed over at the back post. And then Fabinho fired in, latching onto a Salah pass and shooting early through the legs of Rulli, who seemed to have expected the cross.
This was a more familiar Liverpool, hitting a level Villarreal could not match, and five minutes later they scored a second, restoring their two-goal advantage on aggregate.
Alexander-Arnold was given too much space on the right and floated a cross into the area where Diaz, off-balance, aimed an excellent header down and in.
Seven minutes later, Liverpool delivered the final blow, as Rulli rushed out to close down a launched ball forward but failed to get there first.
Mane sprinted clear and rolled into an open net before Capoue was sent off, earning a second yellow card with six minutes left