Burnley: Cork 54’
Liverpool: Milner 62’, Firmino 69’, Shaqiri 90+1
- Pre-match Thought: Our Fowler in heaven, hallowed be your name. Your goals come, your defenders done, at Turf Moor as it is in Anfield. Give us this day our daily goals (please before the 96th minute), and forgive us our doubts, as we also have forgiven our doubters. And lead us not into the ale, but deliver us from Burnley. Amen.
- The first five minutes goes just about as well as you’d expect for a team that doesn’t have a lot of minutes together under their belt. Burnley, as well, are playing like a side buoyed by the fact that they don’t have to face off against Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mane, or Roberto Firmino.
- Burnley had what appeared to be about 3 consecutive uncalled offsides, but thankfully Virgil van Dijk and Big Joe Gomez are positioned well enough to kill the danger.
- Oh, no. Gomez, who has already been called into action on a couple of occasions, looks to be in real pain after a hefty challenge near the touchline with an apparent ankle injury. Trent Alexander-Arnold is coming on with less than a quarter of the match gone, and Gomez leaving the pitch on a stretcher.
- And now Moreno gets done with a late challenge. Is there a card? A foul? Ha! Seriously though, we might not have ankles left on this team after this match.
- Van Dijk gets a rare free header in the box. It’s a good one, but directed right at Joe Hart.
- Sunday night’s hero, Divock Origi, is showing why he’s been rather far down the pecking order in recent seasons. He can hardly get a foot on the ball, and when he does, he’s routinely pressured off it.
- The match has opened up as the end of the first half approaches. Daniel Sturridge and Naby Keita are looking particularly dangerous with good runs and interplay in and around the box.
- Burnley put the ball in the back of the net on a set play, but thankfully the linesman (correctly) puts his flag up, and the goal does not count.
- Halftime Thought: Another day, another disappointing scoreless opening 45. This match is shaping up like the one two years ago, when Liverpool had 80% of the possession. We’re pegged at 78% possession tonight. Thankfully we didn’t concede early like on that occasion. Liverpool have been able to get in behind the stubborn Burnley defense several times, but have failed to take advantage.
- Close! Sturridge finds an inch of space at the top of the box and forces a low save from Hart with a well-placed left-footed curler.
- And now Keita! The Guinean unleashes a wicked shot from well outside the box, bound for the top corner, but Hart once again makes the save.
- Goal. For fuck’s sake. Liverpool were the benefactors of a scrappy goal on Sunday, but it went against them tonight as Burnley get their goal on a set play. It might have been offside, but Matip losses the first header at the backpost, and Liverpool are punished.
- GOAL! James Milner chips in with a rare goal from open play. The veteran calls for it at the top of the box, and Origi cuts it back to him. He hits a low shot to the far post through traffic, and finds the target. Hart can’t keep this one out!
- On 65 minutes Kloppo makes his two last remaining changes, with Bobby and Mo coming on for Moreno and Origi. Goalscorer James Milner moves to leftback.
- I’m not sure what Burnley have to do to earn a card, but it’ll probably involve breaking bones. Anyway, free kick to Liverpool after Sturrigde his hauled down as he’s about to run through on goal.
- GOAL!! On the resulting free kick, Van Dijk’s run to the back post is picked out, and he centers the ball first time for Firmino to tap in!
- The Traveling Kop is certainly in better spirits after that second goal. They’re now singing a lovely rendition of “Merry Christmas, Everton.”
- Close! The best stuff of the from Liverpool. Hart comes up with a double save, and then Tarkowski clears a cheeky Keita back heel off the line. Unlucky not to put the final nail in the coffin there.
- BIG SAVE from Alisson! Once again Burnley create havoc on a corner but...
- GOAL!!! After the scrum, Alisson is quick to spring a quick counter. Salah picks out Shaqiri’s run, and the Swiss internationally slots it first time.
- Final Whistle Thought: Liverpool find their way past Burnley on a challenging night with heavy changes and on short rest. The final scoreline looks more comfortable than it ever felt, but we’ll take it. Three more points for the Mighty Reds.
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.