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Leicester City 0, Liverpool 4 - Match Recap: Boxing Day Masterclass

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The Reds turn a dominant performance into a flurry of second half goals, walking out easy winners on the night.

Leicester City v Liverpool FC - Premier League Photo by Alex Pantling/Getty Images

Leicester City 0 - 4 Liverpool

World Champions: Firmino 31’ 74’, Milner (pen) 72’, Alexander-Arnold 78’

Pre-Match

The Reds have a chance to go an eye-watering 13 points clear at the top of the table tonight. However, in order to do so they’ll need to overcome high-flying Leicester City, and an annoyingly on-form Jamie Vardy who has been scoring goals for fun this campaign. Moreover, Brendan Rodgers would love nothing more than to end his former club’s nearly year-long unbeaten run in the league, and throw a wrench into our title charge in the process. Jurgen Klopp is well aware of the danger posed by these Foxes, and is sending out his best XI that is currently fit and available, including Georginio Wijnaldum who is back after a brief injury spell. It should be an intense game, but a positive result in Liverpool’s favor would be a big step toward ending that 30-year title drought.

First Half

A Trent Alexander-Arnold shot from distance tests Schmeichel within the first minute, and Mane nearly gets on the end of a Salah cross a moment later. It appears these Reds came to play tonight.

Mohamed Salah rounds the keeper, but in the process forces himself wide. He once again elects to take the shot from a narrow angle, but the better option would have been to square it to Mane for a far easier finish.

Halfway through the half, Leicester have gotten nothing from Liverpool’s defense. So far zero attempts for the home side to six for the visitors.

GOAL! Liverpool get their breakthrough after an excellent opening 30 minutes. Trent Alexander-Arnold picks up the pieces on the second phase of play after a corner, and puts his cross to the backpost on a plate for Roberto Firmino who nods it home.

Mane should have doubled the lead a moment after the opener, but he couldn’t beat Schmeichel from close range.

The half closes with Liverpool maintaining their narrow advantage. That was a fantastic and mature opening half on the road for the Reds. They’ve held the hosts to zero shots. Zero. Liverpool probably regret not taking full advantage of some of their chances, but it was still a dominant half. Another 45 minutes like that, and Liverpool should be returning to Merseyside with a big advantage in the title race.

Second Half

Despite Leicester managing their first shot of the match (not on target, mind you), Liverpool have continued their domination of proceedings early in the half. But again, a second (or third) goal for our efforts would be greatly appreciated. And deserved.

Joe Gomez goes into the book for a rather soft foul, with Michael Oliver claiming that the defender impeded Vardy outside of the box. Thankfully the resulting free kick came to nothing. Leicester go on a mini-flurry of half-dangerous possession, reminding everyone just how dangerous this whole 1-0 business really is.

Jurgen Klopp responds to this renewed pressure by the home side by subbing on Divock Origi and James Milner for Salah and Naby Keita, respectively.

Penalty! Liverpool send in a cross from a corner, and Leicester defender Soyuncu stops the cross with his hand. Oliver immediately points to the spot, and wouldn’t you know it, Milner just stepped on the pitch.

GOAL!! Milner is cool as ice with his first touch of the match, hitting it right down the middle, into the space vacated by Schmeichel.

GOAL!!! We’re having fun now! Bobby wins the ball back up high, plays it to Milner, who lays it off to Alexander-Arnold on the wing. Trent sends in a blistering low cross, picking out Firmino, who takes a touch and places it in the absolute top bin. Bobby rushes over for a Klopp hug. GET IN.

GOAL!!!! Things got ugly for the Foxes, and in a hurry! Milner picks out Mane in acres of space. Mane drives forward, lays it off to Trent near the top of the box, and Trent puts his laces through it, beating the keeper to the far post with a low shot. Game. Set. Match.

A scary moment for Henderson. Liverpool’s captain gets tangled up in a challenge, and is taken off for Adam Lallana. He’s back up walking around, even wanting to get back on the pitch, but Kloppo and the medical team are taking no chances.

Final Thoughts

Liverpool take a commanding lead in the Premier League. The Reds are 13 points clear of Leicester City with a game in hand, and 14 points clear of Manchester City, having played the same number of matches. Next up, Wolves at home.