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Liverpool 5, Arsenal 5 (5-4 pens) - Match Recap: Gunners Out-Gunned

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Liverpool score 5 goals and convert all 5 of their pens to go through to the next round.

Liverpool FC v Arsenal FC - Carabao Cup Round of 16 Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

Liverpool 5 - 5 Arsenal

Reds: Mustafi (OG) 6’, Milner (Pen) 43’, Oxlade-Chamberlain 58’, Origi 62’ 90+4
Gunners: Torreira 19’, Martinelli 26’ 36’, Maitland-Niles 54’, Willock 70’

Pre-Match

So. The League Cup. How gloriously low-stakes. It’s a highly-changed line-up, with plenty of opportunities for youth and fringe players, so at least that’s exciting. Rhian Brewster and Harvey Elliott will look to impress once again, and they’re led out of the tunnel by captain James Milner. So, let’s do the thing against Arsenal, or not and go back to the business of winning bigger and better competitions (which at this point, is all of them). Side note: what’s a Neco Williams?

First Half

GOAL! It’s an own goal, and if anything it’s a bit rude of Mustafi to deny Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain an assist after a great run down the wing, and a very dangerous cross towards a lurking Brewster. Mustafi couldn’t sort his feet, and sent the clearance exactly the wrong way. And I already owe Williams an apology: it was his ball that played Ox through.

Goal. As good as Liverpool have looked going forward, they were just a horror show at the back. Yes, Torreira was offside (where are your VAR gods now?!) but the Reds were way too lax at the back and were accordingly punished.

Brewster goes into the book for obstructing the keeper. A little dumb, especially in the first half, but I appreciate the needle.

Goal. Ooof. Well, at least this one isn’t boring. Kelleher does well to save Arsenal’s first effort, but cannot hold onto the ball, and Martinelli picks up the scraps with an emphatic finish.

Goal. The ball is given away cheaply after trying to play it out from the back, and Arsenal made the most of it. This could get ugly if the yutes can’t turn it around.

Keita appeals for a handball and on review...he has a hell of a point. No matter, Harvey Elliott wins a pen mere seconds later.

GOAL!! James Milner steps up to the spot, and you know the rest. I hope you bet the “over” in goals scored today.

Divock Origi finishes the half by missing an absolute sitter, putting his headed effort just over the crossbar. That half certainly didn’t lack excitement. And the way things are going, it seems likely that there are more goals to come in this end-to-end affair.

Second Half

Brewster and Elliott continue to impress. They might not score today, but they appear to have bright futures ahead of them. Brewster started the half by nearly getting through on goal before losing his balance in the battle with Mustafi. Regardless, he recovered, won the ball, laid it off for a 1-2, and got a shot away. Impressive.

Goal. Just when it looked like Liverpool were going to push for that equalizer, Milner of all people gave the ball away in the box with a sloppy backpass.

And it goes from bad to potentially worse: Klopp brings Keita off for Scouse-as-fuck Curtis Jones. Keita then walks straight down the tunnel with the physios. Not. Good.

GOAL!!! Just when it looked like this tie was decided, Oxlade-Chamberlain smashes a half-volley from well outside the box into the absolute top bin. WHAT A HIT, SON!

GOAL!!!! This one is mad, y’all. Jones plays the ball into Origi’s feet at the top of the box, and the Belgian striker switches it onto his right foot, and blasts it goalward. The keeper gets a glove to it, but cannot save the well-struck shot.

Goal. Fair play. Willock carries the ball through the midfield and takes a shot from about 30 yards out, putting it in the top corner. Fair play. Also, this game is mad and I kind of love it even though we’re losing.

Pedro Chirivella coming on for Ox. Did...we actually resolve his eligibility issue? Or is this just Klopp telling the FA to do one? I’m fine either way, to be honest.

GOAL!!!!! Just when it looked as if all was lost, Origi goes and does what he does: scores a belter of a late goal, and it’s on to pens. Hahahaha. This is madness.

Penalties

  1. Bellerin O - Milner O
  2. Guendouzi O - Lallana O
  3. Martinelli O - Brewster O
  4. Ceballos X - Origi O
  5. Maitland-Niles O - Jones O

Final Thoughts

That was a mad one. Mad, sometimes bad, and in the end, we’re glad. But why are some matches mad and bad and glad? I do not know, go ask your dad. For now, we’re on to the quarterfinals of the League Cup.

Back to regularly-scheduled programming this weekend, when Liverpool go back to the business of trying to win the damned league.