Liverpool 0 - 0 Manchester United
Liverpool vs Manchester United at Anfield. Two teams that couldn’t have more different vibes. Liverpool are in the thick of a title race in December and United are, well, not. But that stuff can go out the window when the whistle blows and ball gets rolling.
Jurgen Klopp only makes one change from last week’s lineup that faced off against Crystal Palace. It’s Ibrahima Konaté in for Jarell Quansah.
The match started at an absolute frantic pace, with Liverpool winning a corner inside 16 seconds. The Reds were all over Manchester United from the start but they weren’t able to capitalize as the half wore on. Things sort of petered out around the half hour mark and Klopp’s men were unable to find something before the break.
United’s game plan was to slow the game down and get men behind the ball. In the first half it worked as Liverpool racked up the xG on corners, but didn’t have any big chances.
The second started as a mirror image of the first. Liverpool were all over United for much of the half, but were finding it hard work in the attacking third. Klopp sought to change the match by bringing on Joe Gomez and Cody Gakpo for Dominik Szoboszlai and Ryan Gravenberch. This moved Trent Alexander-Arnold into the middle of the field to pull the strings. These changes also brought a shift in formation with Gakpo effectively playing as a fourth forward.
Further changes were made in the 78th minute as Liverpool continued to search for a goal. The Reds continued to poke and prod at a very stout United defense. In the 85th minute roars around Anfield went out as the ball bounced off Luke Shaw’s arm, but the referee and his assistants didn’t award a penalty. As harsh as it would’ve been, it was the type of game that needed something like that.
Diogo Dalot was sent off deep into stoppage time for something incredibly bizarre. He received two yellow cards in the span of 10 seconds for dissent.
This is the kind of performance that can really take the wind out of your sails. Liverpool were obviously the better side, but just not clinical enough when they had the chances. They had the opportunity to make a statement with a win today, but that’s not what we got today.
Next week Arsenal come to Anfield. We’ll see what happens.