Manchester City 4 - 1 Liverpool
Manchester City: Alvarez 27’, De Bruyne 46’, Alvarez 50’, Grealish 74’
Liverpool: Salah 17’
Welcome back! Liverpool return from the international break with a visit to the Etihad to take on Manchester City. Cody Gakpo leads the line for the Reds, and Jürgen Klopp gets to field his strongest defensive line with the usual suspects on the wings and Virgil van Dijk and Ibrahima Konaté in the center.
As to be expected in their house, Manchester City start the game strong, patiently passing the ball in the midfield and looking to carve a way through.
However, it’s Liverpool that score first, thanks to some intelligent work from Trent Alexander-Arnold and Diogo Jota. Alexander-Arnold spots Jota, who times his run perfectly to beat the offside trap. The pass is lovely, and Jota does great holding up the ball and setting up Salah to charge through the middle and rifle the loose ball home.
Liverpool score first in an early start after the international break. Buy a lottery ticket or something.
It didn’t take long for Manchester City to react on the other end. The goal itself was boiler plate and should have been snuffed out by the defense. Alas, welcome to Liverpool in 2023. Alvarez scores and makes it look easy.
Cowardly refereeing spares Rodri as he commits two yellow card fouls within minutes of each other, but only gets booked for half of them. Manchester City are lucky not to be down to 10 men as the game ticks towards halftime.
Fabinho gets in a good block to deny Gündogan another chance on goal.
It took less than a minute after the restart for Manchester City to gain the lead in the game through Kevin de Bruyne and another lazy showing from the defense.
That disappointment barely had time to settle before Manchester City struck again. Gündogan tucked in Alvarez’s blocked shot right past Alisson to make it 3-1 to the home team.
Klopp seems to know this game is a wash now. He’s made a mass substitution here early in the second half.
Robertson, Jota, Salah and Harvey Elliott come off, replaced by Kostas Tsimikas, Darwin Nunez, Roberto Firmino and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain. When Salah comes off as they’re chasing a game, you know it’s over.
Just in case that wasn’t clear, Jack Grealish puts in a fourth to clear up the confusion. Manchester City are just having fun now.
It’s damage control as Gakpo comes off and James Milner replaces him.
At least we got some goals in the early post-international break game??