HENDERSON AND VAN DYCK ANNIVERSARY
The fact that this is the most fundamental matchup in England, and everything has long been clear, but Manchester United have been underdogs in it for quite some time. Perhaps since the departure of Sir Alex Ferguson and surely since the arrival of Jurgen Klopp to the Premier League. But now Liverpool are the team with only two consecutive wins since December, and United, along with Arsenal, are displaying some of the most spectacular football in the league.
However, this game was much more important for Klopp, because the Red Devils are unlikely to get past third place, but it is vital for the Merseysiders to hold on to the fourth row in the league. When the opening whistle blew they were six points behind Tottenham, but had two games to go.
Photo source: IMAGO
In the eleven starters, taking into account the injured (and the list of both clubs is solid, but already known), there was nothing unexpected, so we can only point out that Jordan Henderson played his 400th game for Liverpool, and Virgil van Dijk – 150th in the Premier League. So are anniversaries. In addition, Roberto Firmino, who remained on the bench, recalled why he did not want to renew his contract at the end of the season. Since even the not-so-brilliant Darwin Núñez takes his position in the center of the attack.
GAKPO TEACHING NUNEZ TO HIT
Whether it was the energy at Anfield, the Reds’ Champions League motivation, the integrity of the match or all of the above, psychologically and emotionally the hosts did not betray a team that was failing the season. Large attacks scattered around the middle of the field, favorably involved the flanks, actively targeting martial arts and dribbling. In general, they did everything we love about Liverpool in the Klopp era.
By the 25th minute, the Merseysiders were leading 7-1 on shots, but gradually began to lose the threads of the game from their hands. Erik ten Hag was clearly not against the counter-attacking style, and from half-time the coach’s ideas began to work better. Hitting his head just past the far corner, Bruno Fernandes had a great moment after the right-hand drop, then Marcus Rashford nearly ran one-on-one with David de Gea as the Reds had the most memorable run de Núñez, in the line of the goalkeeper who jumped to cross Andrew Robertson. By tradition, the Uruguayan threw the ball over the crossbar.
Photo source: Reuters
It is noteworthy that the left flank of the Liverpool attack was much more productive than the right, where Luke Shaw deftly strangled Mohamed Salah. On the left, through Andrew Robertson and Cody Gakpo, it turned out much more prevalent and promising. These two made the goal under the curtain of the first half. The defender took a very wide and high position, received a pass from Alison (!), moved to the center and rolled against the Dutchman’s play. He turned the opponent into the penalty area and deftly turned the ball into the far corner. Surprisingly, the position on the right flank of the defense was not lost by Diogo Dalot, who was supposed to be there, but by the defensive midfielder Fred. The Portuguese is lost somewhere.
THEY MURDER “MU” IN SEVEN MINUTES
If United had a plan to revive, within a minute of play resuming, Liverpool and the downpour washed it away. The attack on the goal was chaotic. Several players from the guests played unsuccessfully at once: Shaw lost the ball, Wout Wegorst did not have time to catch up with him, Casemiro slipped at the wrong moment, etc. The Merseysiders, on the contrary, always found themselves in the right place, and Harvey Elliott, who competently played on the rebound, gently hung Nunez on the head.
Before the guests had time to recover, Salah led a counterattack, pushed Lisandro Martinez on the flank (he also slipped) and rolled into the Gakpo free zone, and the Dutchman deftly sliced the ball over De Gea from an acute angle. In terms of playing time, these three goals were separated by seven minutes. Anfield almost drowned in ecstasy.
Photo source: IMAGO
SALAH CATCHES FOWLER
Of particular importance to Klopp in the context of Liverpool’s status for the rest of the season, Liverpool not only controlled the game until the final whistle, but literally tore ten Hag’s team apart. What about positional attacks, what about counterattacks, what about set pieces? It’s just that they already succeeded in everything, while the opponent did nothing. Robertson and Ibrahima Konate pardoned the guests after a corner, but Salah, following Scott McTominay’s double rebound from the penalty line with a volley below the bar, brought the score to a humiliation.
For United fans, it’s appalling that even this beating of their team didn’t end there. When Núñez cut the ball with the back of his head after Jordan Henderson’s serve and the score was up 5-0, there were more than 15 minutes to go… Salah did not forgive and in minute 83 he fired a shot from control at the head This was his 129th goal for Liverpool in the Premier League. By this measure, he surpassed Reds legend Robbie Fowler, with the Egyptian taking 211 games and his opponent 51 more. Well, then Roberto Firmino, who came on as a substitute, also scored – 7:0!
Photo source: Reuters
Well, the most surprising thing is that a similar result (one of the teams scores 4-5 goals) occurs for the fourth time in the last five games between these teams. Liverpool crushed an opponent three times: today, 4-0 in April 2022 at Anfield and 5-0 in October 2021 at Old Trafford, and Manchester United managed to get revenge as part of a summer friendly in Thailand (4-0 ).
APP. 26 tours
Liverpool – Manchester United – 7:0 (1:0)
Goals: Gakpo, 43 – 1:0. Nunes, 47 – 2:0. Gakpo, 50-3:0. Salah, 66-4:0. Nunes, 75-5:0. Salah, 83-6:0. Firmino, 88-7:0.
Liverpool: Alisson, Alexander-Arnold, Conate, van Dijk, Robertson, Fabinho (Milner 79), Henderson (Baicetic 78), Elliott (Jones 85), Salah, Núñez (Jota 78), Gakpo (Firmino), 79).
Manchester United: De Gea, Dalot, Varane, Fox. Martínez (Malaysia, 77), Shaw, Casemiro (Zabitzer, 77), Fred (McTominay, 58), Anthony, B. Fernandes, Rashford (Elanga, 85), Wegorst ( Grenache, 58).
Warnings: Fabinho, 41. Anthony, 53. Fox. Martinez, 61. McTominay, 64. Salah, 84.