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Liverpool 5, Swansea City 0: First Thoughts

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Liverpool run riot in the second half and are back in the Top 4.

Liverpool v Swansea City - Premier League Photo by Jan Kruger/Getty Images

Liverpool 5: Coutinho 6’, Firmino 52’ 66’, Alexander-Arnold 65’, Oxlade-Chamberlain 82’
Swansea City 0:

  • Pre-match Thought: Hopefully Liverpool are more adept at shaking off their post-Christmas hangover than I am. That’s why they’re professionals. Simon Mignolet keeps his spot between the sticks, and Sadio Mane starts on the bench, with Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain filling in. Also, Dejan Lovern makes way for a returning Joel Matip. Liverpool start the match in 5th after the Spurs’ rollicking win over a Virgil van Dijk-less Saints. A win will see Liverpool back into the Top 4, a mere 17 points back of Manchester City, who play tomorrow night.
  • GOAL! Well, that didn’t take long. Roberto Firmino wins the ball back high up the pitch, picks out Mohamad Salah, who pings the first-time pass into the feet of Philippe Coutinho. The Little Magician cut in on his right foot, and curled it into the far corner, as he is wont to do.
  • Liverpool go close again. Some lovely interplay between Salah and Coutinho nearly creates another excellent counter-attacking goal.
  • Coutinho and Salah are developing a near-psychic connection. Too bad they’ll be playing for rival Spanish sides next year.
  • With ten minutes left in the first half, Swansea show their first real attacking intent of the night, but Liverpool’s defense deals with it (barely).
  • Liverpool ending the half with a flourish, although no goals to show for it. Salah appeals for a penalty, but it appears as if there was very little (if any) contact. Look away FA, nothing to see here.
  • Into stoppage time, and Salah plays Firmino into acres of space. The Brazilian does everything right but the finish, firing just wide of the target.
  • Halftime Thought: Much like the 1-0 halftime lead against Arsenal, Liverpool will feel they could have gotten more from a pretty dominant first half. Hopefully, as in the last time out, our missed chances won’t come back and haunt us.
  • GOAL!! Firmino doubles Liverpool’s lead! Coutinho wins a free kick in the attacking third, and delivers a peach of a ball on the restart. Coutinho floated a long pass between the defensive wall and the keeper for Firmino to run onto, and Bobby side-footed the volley into the net.
  • Salah hasn’t scored yet, but remains a major threat at any given moment. Following the restart after Firmino’s goal, Salah very nearly added a third, narrowly missing the target on a cutback from a free kick. And a moment later he’s played through with a long pass from Andy Robertson, but cannot beat the keeper.
  • GOAL!!! Trent Alexander-Arnold gets into the action! The youngster bags his first Premier League goal. Robertson tried picking out Salah with a cross. Swansea cleared it, but only as far as an on-rushing Alexander-Arnold, who banged his goal in off the underside of the crossbar.
  • GOAL! Firmino adds a fourth! Salah ran onto a poor back pass, and instead of attempting the shot, unselfishly squared it for a wide-open Bobby. 4-0 to the Scousers!
  • Jurgen Klopp decides that a 4-goal lead with 22 minutes to play is probably safe, even for this side. He takes off Firmino and Salah for Dominic Solanke and Adam Lallana.
  • Oh, Lallana turn, how I missed you. Though, seriously, sort your hair.
  • Klopp makes his final sub, taking off Robertson for James Milner.
  • GOAL! Ox makes it 5 on one of, if not the, sloppiest Liverpool goal of the season. Still counts!
  • Final Whistle Thought: Liverpool turned the screw in the second half, winning in a walk. It was comfortable throughout, although a lot of this boils down to Swansea being not very good at the footy. Still, we’ll definitely take a big win over a relegation side at home!

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.