CHELSEA 1-3 LIVERPOOL
KLOPP CONTINUES HIS WINNING STREAK! AGAINST CHELSEA.
This may be one of the most remembered times in his career for Klopp… he turns up in Liverpool, doesn’t lose a single game leading up to this fixture and then Liverpool travel to Stamford Bridge and beat Chelsea, which Brendan Rodgers never could achieve in over 3 seasons. It’s like a fairy tale.
Liverpool have had some major setbacks this season. Mostly due to injuries within the squad being at a high level, with many players in the process of attempting recovery to full fitness. When your squad is clearly not as strong as it could be and then you’re about to face Chelsea at their own ground, it’s worrying. You know there’s a chance you could lose the game when you’ve got key players out with injury, but we’ve worked well to rearrange the squad and made our best effort with the squad we had available. It was enough for victory.
This is what the manager had at his disposal. Klopp is still being careful not to bring back too soon the recently recovered from injury players, like Benteke. He’s played in some second halves of matches only as a precaution, but may soon become part of a starting 11 if the manager thinks he’s fit enough. Firmino arrived back from injury around the same time as Benteke and has now become a part of a starting 11.
The substitutes bench included not just Benteke but also some young players that we had seen in a league cup game against Bournemouth – Connor Randall and Joao Carlos Teixeira. Neither would feature on the pitch against Chelsea but at least they’re getting their names on squad sheets, being named by the manager for the first team squad is important whether you play or not.
The first half did not start as Reds fans would have hoped, with Chelsea managing to score in under 4 minutes.
The goal came after a run down the wing by a Chelsea attacker went successfully past James Milner (who had slid in to tackle but failed to retrieve the ball), a cross was made and Ramires was there in the center of the box to collect the cross, heading the ball past the closest defender (Alberto Moreno) and goalkeeper Simon Mignolet. Chelsea 1-0 Liverpool
We knew from this point, we’d have to work hard to get back into the game, but having at least 86 minutes to do that really was an advantage. Early goals are easier to make comebacks from than late goals. There wouldn’t be any point in constant defensive play, if we did that then we’d likely not score any goals. So attacking football was what we saw happening from the 4th minute of the game onwards.
It was end to end, with threats coming from both sides. However I would say that Liverpool looked more comfortable, we also won many balls as Chelsea attempted to make their way towards our goal but ended up getting dispossessed as we challenged and won tackles to make counter attacks and continued to press for the remainder of the first half.
Our equalizer was quite controversial… but only if you are a Chelsea fan. The Reds fans know the rather ludicrous nature of the claim against why we shouldn’t have had our 1st goal allowed.
Basically, the match officials had awarded 2 minutes of extra time to be played at the end of the first half. The referee would allow the game to be continued to play until at least 2 minutes and 35 seconds, which was when Liverpool’s goal was scored.
Here’s why it was a totally legit goal that was fairly awarded by referee (Mark Clattenburg):
First of all, LIVERPOOL WERE ATTACKING. If Chelsea were attacking and heading towards Liverpool’s goalkeeper would the referee really blow the whistle in mid-attack and not allow them to finish their attack before he called for half time? NO WAY. It’s a simply continuation that allows the attacking team to finish up their offensive play before the referee finishes up the half and that’s the referee’s decision to make and the fair thing to do. Chelsea have no right to complain that there was “excess time” given to us in which we scored a goal that should not have been allowed. It’s in the rule books that the referee can continue over the extra time that was specified to be played (in this case, 2 minutes) if he so wishes to do so. No referee wants to stop a team in mid attack because they had already played for the amount of time specified. There would be a lot of even worse debates over “WHAT IF WE WERE ABOUT TO SCORE with that attack you stopped?!” if referee’s blew up for half (or full) time in the middle of an attack. What he did was truly the “fair play” ruling of a referee in this situation.
Jose Mourinho and Chelsea fans are just bitter that we managed to equalise.
By the way, the goalscorer for us was Coutinho. Despite all the controversy over when it was scored, it was actually a really nice goal. The Chelsea defence were scrambling to tackle our attacker but he made enough space to turn away from the incoming challenges, then get a shot off, which had enough power and accuracy to go past the goalkeeper and into the top left corner of the goal. Chelsea 1-1 Liverpool.
As the teams came out again for more action in the second half, it seemed like Liverpool were still in control, though the game would stop and start a bit before we’d see another goal. There was 3 substitutions and 3 yellow cards shown before the next goal of the game. Lucas Leiva and Emre Can would both be booked for Liverpool.
I’d like to say that despite the fact that Lucas has been booked about 3 or 4 times this season, I appreciate his presence and contributions in the games he plays in. He’s sometimes an unnoticed player, until the moment in the game when he’s been shown a yellow card and even our own fans can become frustrated with him for it. They think perhaps that his “foul” and booking (which isn’t always fairly given) is his only contribution, but even though he’s not scoring goals (which gets players noticed fairly easily), he’s still playing a part which I value highly.
He did well in this game and late on in the game, was warned by the referee as he made a challenge in which he’d gotten more of the player than the ball and Jose Mourinho was very animated at this time, jumping up and down, yelling at the match official, demanding that Lucas be given a second yellow card. It didn’t happen and I’m sure Mourinho also attributes this “unfairness” to the defeat he suffered instead of Liverpool simply having played better than his side.
One of the substitutions was Christian Benteke for James Milner around the 64th minute. Benteke changed the game in a positive way. Liverpool fans know how good he is at creating large impact on games that he doesn’t have to be part of for the full 90 minutes in order to do so. He did not fail in this at Stamford Bridge.
In the 74th minute, a perfectly headed pass from Benteke went directly to Coutinho, who fired an accurately placed shot past the Chelsea goalkeeper for the second time in this game and the score became Chelsea 1-2 Liverpool.
You might have thought that was enough to win the game and could have been right, but Liverpool did not stop at leading by a single goal and went on to claim another before full time.
Christian Benteke was yet again to make his mark on the game. Not content with assisting our second goal, he wanted one of his own.
By now, Roberto Firmino had left the field and Jordon Ibe had replaced him. Ibe impressed me with contributions yet again, but he didn’t do enough to earn himself “Man Of The Match” this time. There were simply other players who had been of a slightly higher standard in this game.
The build up for the third goal was beautiful football. Around the 82nd minute, Jordon Ibe was running with the ball down on the right wing. Ibe saw at least two of our attackers in the penalty area and crossed the ball, hoping to find someone (and he would).
The first player that the ball would come to is Adam Lallana. He cleverly faked attempting to take a shot, not actually making any contact with the ball but acting like he was going to shoot… then as the Chelsea defenders (about three of them) all gave their attention to Lallana, he LEFT IT and allowed it to go right through his legs (like a nutmeg) – AKA a “dummy”. By now, Benteke was in a dangerous position and was completely unmarked thanks to Lallana’s clever football. He received the ball, took his shot from close range and put it into the net to make the score Chelsea 1-3 Liverpool. Liverpool would only have to play the remaining 7 minutes of regular time and 4 and a half minutes of extra time before we could finally celebrate the victory over Mourinho’s Chelsea. It was so special.
I am awarding “Man Of The Match” to Coutinho. His two goals were special, he worked hard even when we’d been losing and he’s brought hope and joy to the Liverpool fans with his contributions that ended up bringing us victory against Chelsea at Stamford Bridge, no simple task and quite an achievement. He is a truly determined player that never gives up until the very final whistle of the game, by which time he’s turned the score around for his club. He’s also rather humble when talking about his achievements, unlike Chelsea’s manager.
In his post match interview, Jose Mourinho was asked some simple questions about what went wrong or how Liverpool turned the game around from losing to winning and his response to multiple questions was
“I have nothing to say”.
He literally could not have the good grace to just express that his team had not been good enough to beat Liverpool, he just refused to answer questions and even when the interviewer was doing his best to get something out of him by saying “don’t you think the fans deserve to hear something from their manager about the defeat?” he just had nothing to say except “the fans are not stupid, I don’t need to tell them anything”. You’re right, Jose. The fans aren’t the stupid ones and you’re not the special one. You’re the stupid, bitter, sore loser one.
Both Steve McManaman and Harry Redknapp were talking about this and agreed that Jose really needs to learn a lesson in humility. He was beaten by a better side and couldn’t even talk graciously about his defeat. He just had “nothing to say”. Pathetic.
Liverpool’s season will continue and hopefully our winning streak will, too. We’ll play in the Europa League in our next fixture, which will see us travelling to Russia for our away leg with Rubin Kazan, who we’ve drawn with in this competition already this season. It was a close game the first time we played them and we almost came away with a win, which hopefully we can achieve this time.
I hope you’ve enjoyed watching Liverpool beat Chelsea as much as I did. Keep watching us and walking on with hope in your heart, Anfield Family. You’ll Never Walk Alone.
[written by] Stuart Drewery.
I’m an Englishman (born and raised in Liverpool in the 80s). My whole family including my parents and grandparents were Liverpool fans so I was born into being a red.
I’ve seen Liverpool win the league (about 25 years ago) and I’ve been 100% loyal and committed while supporting the Reds through all the good times AND the bad times since the 80s.