Chelsea 1-2 Liverpool
Two brilliant first half goals gave Liverpool enough breathing space to beat Frank Lampard’s Chelsea and maintain the Reds’ 100 per cent league record intact.
The Reds came into the game on a 14 match winning run in the Premier League and now they’ve added six to the nine they won at the end of the amazing 2018/19 season. But after a dominant first half Jurgen Klopp’s Reds had to battle hard as Chelsea roared back with a cracking goal of their own. The win keeps Liverpool top by five points.
Having lost to Norwich City last week, champions Manchester City walloped Watford 8-0 yesterday which set down a marker for the Reds, and they responded. The Premier League 2019 betting odds still favour a Sky Blue league triumph, but if Liverpool keeps winning then that will change.
Chelsea might feel they did enough to get a point, but defeat leaves the Blues in mid table.
Highlights of the game
After an evenly contested opening to the game, it didn’t take Liverpool long to get their noses in front. Andreas Christensen tripped Sadio Mane on the edge of the box and the Liverpool sharp shooters circled the free-kick opportunity. And it was a brilliant execution as Mo Salah simply back-heeled the ball to give Trent Alexander-Arnold the angle to smash it into the top right corner to make it 0-1. Certainly one for the Premier League 2019 highlights package, for Liverpool fans in any case!
Tammy Abraham had a superb chance to draw Chelsea level when he was put clean through on goal by Cesar Azpilicueta, but Adrian stood his ground and blocked. And then, on 27 minutes the Chelsea skipper thought he had equalised, bundling the ball home after a scramble in the box. But the Blues’ celebrations were cut short when VAR found that Mason Mount’s foot was inches offside in the build up.
Chelsea’s frustration was compounded two minutes later when Andy Robertson swung in a trademark cross onto the head of Roberto Firmino and the net bulged. The VAR tension had clearly affected the flow of the game and while Chelsea rued their luck the Reds took advantage with the ruthlessness of champions.
Liverpool almost went three up early in the second half when Alexander-Arnold whipped in a dangerous ball which Azpilicueta could only divert towards his own goal, but Kepa scooped it off the line.
But then, in a moment of pure quality N’Golo Kante dragged Chelsea back into the game with 20 minutes remaining. The midfield ace picked up the ball over 30 yards out and jinked one way and then the other, evading three tackles before firing a beauty into the top right corner.
Stamford Bridge awoke to cheer on its team. Mason Mount worked tirelessly and Michy Batshuayi watched a header fly wide. And then Marcos Alonso fired in a cross which Mount met at the near post but fired his shot over. And that was that.
These two clubs have had some spectacular battles over the years and the team here at SBOBET expected another, and while it looked like Liverpool might run away with the game after a dominant first half Kante’s strike made it an exciting last 20 minutes.
Chelsea had more possession and more shots, 13 to six, but only managed two on target to Liverpool’s three and that was telling. And the way the VAR drama swung the game in the first half was harsh on the hosts.
It’s only the second time in 13 away games against the big six sides that Liverpool has come away with three points, the last against Spurs, so this was a big result for Jurgen Klopp’s title chasers.
Liverpool returns to league action, still top of the Premier League, when Klopp takes his team to new boys Sheffield United, and that will be another tough challenge. But before that they are on the road again with a Carabao Cup tie away to MK Dons. The Reds have recovered well from a Champions League defeat to Napoli, but Klopp will be keen to maintain momentum this week.
The Blues are at home to Grimsby in the Carabao Cup and then welcome Brighton to Stamford Bridge, two games which they should win and which should breathe more confidence into Lampard’s young team.
They might be down in 11th place, but these are early days and Chelsea is only three points behind Leicester City in third.
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