Klopp named his normal back four and keeper in the starting XI. He included a midfield three of Jordan Henderson, Gini Wijnaldum and Naby Keita. Roberto Firmino and Mo Salah retained their spots, with Alex Oxlade Chamberlain coming in for the recovering Sadio Mane. The Reds came into tonight’s contest facing a tricky test.
Not only is Norwich an exciting team that has pulled some impressive results at home, but the weather was quite poor. In the wake of a brutal storm, and many thoughts that the game may be postponed, Liverpool and Norwich kicked off.
Norwich were in on goal with a beautiful chip ball over the top. The ball beat Liverpool’s entire defense, and Alisson Becker was left to make an absolutely world class save denying Teemu Pukki a chance to give the Canaries the lead.
That was about the only notable piece of play from the first half other than some nasty Roberto Firmino flicks, touches and no look passes.
The weather played a major factor in the first half, as the gusting winds affected set pieces, long balls and rhythm.
The halftime whistle blew and the two sides remained deadlocked at 0-0.
Both teams came out for the second half unchanged.
Naby Keita found some space outside the top of the Norwich Box, worked an angle a fired a fizzier that was turned away by Norwich keeper Tim Krul.
Following a failed clearance in the Norwich Box, Salah took the ball down well, controlled it onto his left and shot at goal. His effort was saved by Krul and Keita failed to convert a tap in off a rebound. Easily should’ve been 1-0 to the Reds, but Krul did well to react and keep it scoreless.
Klopp made his first subs of the evening in the 60’, a double switch. He brought on Sadio Mane for Oxlade Chamberlain and Fabinho for Wijnaldum.
Norwich defender Aarons nearly put an Andy Robertson into the back of his own net following a deflection from a cross. Liverpool won a corner but nothing came of it.
Mane played Salah in down the left beautifully, Salah squared it but Norwich did well to meet the ball first and clear.
Tettey went close for Norwich, as he somewhat caught Alisson napping and almost beat him at his near post, but his effort deflected out off the post.
The atmosphere at Carrow Road began to pick up as Norwich won successive corners. The Canaries nearly scored on one of them.
Goal! Henderson clipped a ball over the top, Manè controlled it with his left foot, turned and fired into the bottom corner of the near post into the back of the net. Following a VAR check for a foul, the goal was given. 1-0 Liverpool after 78’.
Norwich manager Daniel Farke made his first subs of the evening. A double switch. Buendia and Drmic on for Rupp and Tettey in the 84’.
Klopp made his final sub of the evening in the 84’, bringing on James Milner for Naby Keita.
Trent was played into some space down the right, took a touch and fired a fizzling ball across the six yard box where it met Roberto Firmino who surely should’ve tapped it home to make it 2-0 and wrap up the three points for LFC, but the Brazilian uncharacteristically skied his chance well wide. Stil 1-0.
Teemu Pukki was played in, one on one with Virgil Van Dijk. The Dutchman did well to somewhat put him off and force him to take his chance early, and he fired his shot straight at Alisson.
The referee added 3 minutes of stoppage time.
The final whistle blew, Liverpool 1 – Norwich City 0.
Sadio Mane fired Klopp’s men 25 points clear at the top of the Premier League. Scrappy contest, but Klopp’s mentality monsters have done it again. Liverpool equal a club record with 17 successive league wins. Liverpool are now just five wins away from Premier League glory.
Next up: First Leg Champions League Round of 16 tie @ Atletico Madrid.