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Liverpool 0 Manchester United 1: First Thoughts

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Anfield phooey as Liverpool are never quite able to put it together against Louis van Gaal's Manchester United.

Alex Livesey/Getty Images

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Liverpool 0
Manchester United 1 Rooney 78'

  • Pregame Thoughts: Liverpool-Manchester United, eh? Magic has certainly been in the air over the last 24 hours, with both the Premiership and NFL serving up plenty of quality and drama. Papa Lucas' introduction to this game feels important, along with a second game in a row for Robert Firmino: Central Forward. Also we're getting doughnuts delivered to us. That's right, like a king.

  • Nice and tight to start things off, Firmino gets a couple touches, and Moreno gets a flying sidekick in for a clearance. What do we reckon Kolo's secret is? Magnesium sulfate? Yoga? The Sorcerer's Stone?

  • Schnellaini sitting deep enables the agricultural Herrera to be play primary support for Rooney. Helluva player the Spaniard.

  • Lucas slammed his temple into Fellaini's brow with such ferocity that it started snowing in North Carolina.

  • Lallana gets put through with a looping ball dropped between Smalling & Blind. Tough to get any power on that header, making De Gea's job easier. A subsequent low drive from Firmino swerves wide left. Game on, kiddos.

  • Kerfuffle Alert! Fellaini slams Milner to the ground, Lucas stops by for a bit of cheese, crackers, and discussion over global socio-economic disparity. This is definitely a derby.

  • Firmino doing a great job owning areas between and around United's centerhalves -- watch that space.

  • Can gets his pocket picked by Lingaard in his own half. Lucas was there to clean it up, but that's a bit of a bad habit of Emre's, innit.  

  • A Hendo shot goes close, then one goes not so close. These are some of the things that have happened.

  • Daley Blind looking more like Every So Often Blind with that corner. 

  • Emre on the charge, holds on to possession too long and almost gets it pipped from behind (again), but it finds its way to Firmino who goes down too easily searching for a penalty. Game on.

  • Oh no, Ashley Young goes down injured. But who will save United now.

  • Borthwick-Jackson: footballer or classic car auction? 

  • Halftime: Things got heated, then they cooled off. Liverpool probably having the best chances, but nothing absolutely gilt-edged. Klopp will take more of the same, van Gaal will take chilled baby lamb's blood custard with a toddler's tears spritzer to wash it down. We just want one more half a cheesecake doughnut for our halftime team talk. Go on, then, a full one. 

  • No changes to start the second, which is good cos Lucas was motioning to the trainer at the half like he needed a Backiotomy.

  • Emre Can with a bit of cherry on top, there, as he bursts into the box for a left footer that goes wide of the far post.

  • Kololol looks to have lighter feet than Firmino, today. That is probably not the best sign for Liverpool's chances at an opener here.

  • One of the most annoying plays in football is the cross into the box when there's clearly no one there. Adam. Looking at you.

  • Martial? How about no.

  • We mean it. Stahp it.

  • Reds are struggling to support attacks, at the moment. Good defending at the back, but the game has swung in United's favor.

  • Martial has these moments in possession where he makes defenders look like they're on ice skates by comparison.

  • Hendo straight at De Gea with a drive. Too many pop shots going on, get closer to goal, fellas.

  • Juan Kills comes on for the anonymous Lingaard, but what will Jürgy's move be here? We vote for Ebay's speed and directness.

  • Hot damn that was a well smoked ham hock from Emre, there. Good save as it swerved to the left, but Firmino's half-assed follow up was never going to be a thing.

  • Moreno stops a break one v one against Rooney - Liverpool's transition defense has been on point all day.

  • No real pop to proceedings. Feels like the name of the game for both teams is don't fuggup.

  • Fellaini gets his stupid ugly face on a corner and Shrek gets the follow up, real dumb like. Whole day's been rooned.

  • Christian Bentakin his warmups off to come into the game. You know he's means business when he slams a full go-gurt to the dome like that.

  • Ibe came in at some point, but things done been bland in attack for the Reds.

  • Klopp looks cold. Like our dead heart if this scoreline holds.

  • Da fuq just happened. Emre again bursting into the box with the ball eventually finding its way to Firmino from 4 yards out, but the Brazilian assumes he's offside and doesn't even attempt to score. You know what they say about assumptions. 

  • Late set piece for Liverpool, but its a lame duck finish for the good guys. At least it's still snowing in Charlotte.

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We'll be back shortly to take an in-depth look at everything that happened in today's game with the full recap. Until then, let us know your take on the ups and downs of the match in the comments, and if you haven't already, join the community on the Liverpool Offside, where we'll have full coverage and lively in-game discussion for every match this season.