LEICESTER CITY 3 - 1 LIVERPOOL
Leicester City: Maddison 78’, Vardy 81’, Barnes 85’
Liverpool: Salah 67’
Now that Liverpool is out of the title race, it’s a race for the top four and the Champions League next season. With Fabinho injured once again, young Ozan Kabak gets his first ever Liverpool start, partnering captain Hendo in the back line. He will benefit from Henderson’s presence since they will be tasked with stopping Jamie Vardy’s notorious runs. Leicester’s home form against the Reds has been poor in the past, and they are also missing key defender James Justin, so there’s hope yet. Up the Reds!
Liverpool lead an effective press and look confident for most of the first half. But their finishing has been extremely poor despite the number of chances created and despite the fact that Leicester’s low block has gaping holes for the Reds’ attackers to filter through. A number of (now trademark) beautiful long balls from Jordan Henderson are received by Salah whose first touch is poor and he fails to convert the chances. Milner is subbed off at 15’ with some discomfort, and Thiago comes on as a replacement. Leicester look more composed in the last ten minutes of this half, and Jamie Vardy has a couple of shots that hit the bar or are blocked by Alisson - one at 35’ from a Harvey Barnes cross over Trent’s frame, another at 41’ from a long ball, and a third at 44’ during a counter. Henderson has been the MOTM this half - alert, anticipating key moves, sending gorgeous crosses towards the front three. Liverpool have dominated the game but have been wasteful with finishing chances. The half ends 0-0.
Liverpool continue to press hard and create about six chances in the opening 20 minutes of this half, and finally at 66’ we have a GOAL! A lovely cross from Trent to Bobby Firmino, who turns on the sauce with a back-heeled flick to Salah, who then slots it in perfectly to the top corner of Schmeichel’s net. The positives end there. A glorious sweeping free-kick by James Maddison slices through a crowded box into the corner of Alisson’s net and they have a GOAL. Yet another massive blunder at 81’ sees Alisson come off his line as he frequently does, but this time it’s unnecessary - Kabak isn’t able to flick the ball away from Vardy’s path and we see another GOAL - embarrassing. Harvey Barnes wraps the game up at 84’ taking advantage of a clear path left open for him by Liverpool’s defense - GOAL.
Liverpool dominated sections of the game but fell apart in the second half after scoring their only goal. Leicester reacted well to conceding the goal, by going guns blazing in attack and taking advantage of the weaknesses of Liverpool’s patchwork squad. The Europa League looks closer next season than the other one.