Liverpool banished the ghosts of last season as they recorded a (mostly) comfortable 2-1 victory over Tottenham Hotspur at Wembley Stadium. Goals from Georginio Wijnaldum and Roberto Firmino were enough to make Erik Lamela’s goal in the last few minutes meaningless in the end.
One of the main narratives in the build up to this game was for the Reds to get revenge after the dismantling we received last season at the same venue at the hands of the same opposition. The likely line up for this game would contain only a few of the players that started in the 4-1 loss last time which shows just how far this squad has come in a relatively short period of time.
Where Spurs were on top for the majority of the last game at Wembley, today was the opposite. Liverpool seemed the much more likely team to score for pretty much the entire game with chances being wasted left and right. Sadio Mane and Mohamed Salah, while both looking dangerous, seemed to both be missing their shooting boots today as they both missed good opportunities. There was even a point where Klopp started to look visibly angry on the touchline when Salah decided to go for the shot instead of seeking out Daniel Sturridge who was in a much better position.
The breakthrough finally came in the 39th minute when James Milner’s corner was misjudged by Michel Vorm (Hugo Lloris’ understudy in goal) and it fell on to the head of Wijnaldum who managed to get enough power on the header to take it over the line, despite Vorm’s best efforts. It was Gini’s first ever Premier League away goal, a curse he will be glad to have lifted.
It did not take long after half time for Liverpool to double their lead as Mane’s intuitive running down the wing allowed him to enter the box with the ball and pull it back across. With Firmino lurking Jan Vertonghen was needed to turn the ball on to the Spurs post but it wasn’t enough as it rebounded through Vorm’s arms and sat there waiting for Firmino to smash it into the open net. At 2-0 it was comfortable, if anything the scoreline probably should have been more emphatic.
Firmino got scratched in the face by Vertonghen and needed to be substituted, our tempo was never really the same after that and with the introduction of Joel Matip in place of Trent Alexander-Arnold (thereby shifting Joe Gomez out to right back) our defence started to crumble. A consolation goal in added on time for Erik Lamela wasn’t enough to help the home side fight back and Liverpool maintained their perfect start to the Premier League season making it 5 wins out of 5; the first time Liverpool have done this in the Premier League era and only the 3rd time they’ve ever managed the feat.
A two day break now before we get our Champions League campaign underway against PSG at Anfield on Tuesday. See you then reds!