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Norwich City 4, Liverpool 5: What Just Happened

Reds cap incredible comeback with stoppage time winner.

This is a great photo
This is a great photo
Stephen Pond/Getty Images

Norwich City 4 Mbokani 29', Naismith 41', Hoolahan 54' (pk), Bassong 92'
Liverpool 5 Firmino 18', Henderson 55', Firmino 63', Milner 75', Lallana 95'

Norwich City led Liverpool 3-1 after 54 minutes at Carrow Road, and on the run of play the Reds looked dead in the water. With little to play for in the league it would have been easy for the team to quit, but a quick scoring response from Jordan Henderson sparked a memorable turnaround, which climaxed in an Adam Lallana winning goal deep into stoppage time. Go figure.

Liverpool planned to build through a strong midfield base of Lucas, Henderson, and Emre Can, but in a wholly bizarre match that idea soon went out the window. Despite experience playing together and substantial individual talent, little unity existed between Liverpool's midfielders, allowing Norwich to control space and possession in the opening exchanges.

Remember though that this game didn't make any sense, so logically Liverpool were the team to open the scoring. Milner linked up with Roberto Firmino, whose ensuing left-footed effort snuck past Norwich goalkeeper Declan Rudd, ticked off the post, and went in.

Norwich City scored three unanswered goals thereafter, all of which featured comedic defensive play from Liverpool. The first, which brought the scoreline level in the 29th minute, came from a corner that the Reds failed to clear. Former Everton mediocre attacker turned current Norwich City mediocre attacker Steven Naismith made it 2-1 to the Canaries after he ghosted past Emre Can and the left side of Liverpool's defense and sliding a shot from a difficult angle past a late to react Simon Mignolet. On the flip side of half time Wes Hoolahan (can we acknowledge what a great name that guy has?) beat Mignolet from the spot, capitalizing on a bone-headed challenge from Alberto Moreno moments earlier that led Lee Mason to grant the hosts a penalty.

Out of sheer passion for performance art, Norwich City's defense collapsed in impressive fashion and allowed Liverpool to respond with three consecutive goals of their own. Henderson initiated the comeback by turning in a Nathaniel Clyne cross, which was helped on its way by Firmino. Adam Lallana came on and immediately played Firmino in on goal with a fantastic aerial ball that the in-form forward latched onto before finishing past Rudd to level the score 3-3. Milner made it 4-3 when he intercepted a back pass and shot around Rudd with ease.

But wait, there's more! In stoppage time Liverpool failed to close down Sebastien Bassong just outside the area, and his long range strike beat Mignolet to complete the goalkeeper's poor showing. Then, Lallana volleyed a last-ditch effort into the ground only to see the ball bounce up into the top right corner to secure a 5-4 win, causing him to rip off his shirt in celebration and charge a jubilant Jürgen Klopp on the sideline where he was joined by his delirious teammates.

Over the course of the long, arduous season there are matches to analyze in detail and others where you have to just sit back and smile. This one fits the latter category, as Liverpool somehow managed to make an early away match against Norwich City watchable in this disappointing season. Fun stuff.

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