LIVERPOOL 0-0 Man United
Liverpool just claimed a point and Reds fans saw the best draw we’ve had this season since we drew 1-1 with Tottenham.
Klopp had chosen the strongest possible squad he could have, no complaints about his team selection. There was one major player out injured (Wijnaldum), but he was easily replaced with Emre Can. Sturridge would also start, which hasn’t been happening an awful lot this season but we know he’s a proven striker who can get goals.
By full time, there wouldn’t be any goals to talk about but it wasn’t a boring game by any means. These fixtures never are, they’ve been some of the most exciting fixtures on the list for many years. Attacking and counter attacking was seen from both sides as each tried to both hold their defence tight and also grab themselves a goal. Both goalkeepers were needed to make critical saves.
United’s players seemed to be playing a fairly rough game, they challenged us hard for the ball and Liverpool players were often seen tumbling to the ground after tackles which saw us pushed over or tripped up. I was very surprised that the referee only pulled out a yellow card by the end of the first half – many other United players could and should have been booked before then but the match official seemed to be holding back from issuing any kind of warnings to the players. There was even incidents inside of the penalty area which could have easily been called as a foul and a penalty kick awarded. Coutinho was certainly one player who could tell you that, as he was sent crashing to the pitch by a United defender in the box. Had Liverpool been awarded their penalty, I’m confident Milner would have scored it, but he was not given the opportunity to show his cool, calm composure from 12 yards.
The game was end to end, but really it was the defence who kept clean sheets for both sides that mattered most. With impressive attacking players on both teams, the need to not concede goals was high and the players at the back all did their job well.
United’s £89 Million “star player” Paul Pogba was shut down every time he tried to attack. He was often met by Emre Can or Jordan Henderson before he even got as far as our defenders, but Matip and Lovren also had their chances to stop him from scoring too. Wayne Rooney wasn’t a part of United’s starting 11 but when the Scouser finally made an appearance, he was met by the same tough defence that did not allow him to best his hometown rivals, Liverpool. No goals for him.
Liverpool did well to control and keep the ball, with our possession being as high as 65% by the end of the game. Not allowing them to run around Anfield with the ball much of the time kept the home side with a higher chance to draw or win this game.
The deadlock would go on and on, attacking plays were often made but all came to nothing unfortunately. I was most happy with Firmino and Coutinho, both of our Brazilians seemed to be working well together and were seen at the far end of the pitch numerous times. One particular shot from Coutinho saw a curled shot requiring a spectacular save from David De Gea.
This was a key moment, most likely the best chance of scoring Liverpool had in the whole game. The shot seemed to be going into the top corner of the net, but quick reactions from De Gea saw United saved from conceding by their goalkeeper. Credit to De Gea, not many players could have done what he did. Only Karius from the Liverpool squad was showing the same physical prowess in defence.
Well, at least we claimed a single point. Not all teams face Manchester United and come away with points. Something is better than nothing and well done to the players, even if we couldn’t quite get the win our fans want every time we play our rivals from Manchester. Not being beaten by United is still something to be proud of.
Man Of The Match
Often, goalscorers are chosen as Man Of The Match. No goals were scored in this fixture but one player was seen more than all others attempting to score – Coutinho. The magic Brazilian pushed himself as far down the pitch as he could go on many occasions and worked hard against the United defence. A shot of his was surely Liverpool’s best effort to get a goal and it was only the amazing leap through the air and miraculous hand to the ball by David De Gea which stopped him from turning his spectacular curled shot into a spectacular curled GOAL.
Liverpool’s fixture list will continue and we’ll see more Premier League action from our team at Anfield again within the next 5 days. Until then, walk on 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 (more than 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.