LIVERPOOL 1-3 CRYSTAL PALACE
Our second last match of the immensely successful last season was against Crystal Palace and co-incidentally, we had the same opposition yesterday. Well Crystal Palace scored 3 goals on both occasions, but sadly while last time it ended a draw, this time we could only manage a single goal against them. Yes, on the day when Liverpool fans around the world thought that it would a victorious end to Gerrard’s Anfield career, it ended in a defeat. Well, even after the game Liverpool fans bid an emotional farewell to the legendary number 8, it proved to be a sort of a bitter sweet symphony.
Liverpool made a slight change to the lineup with Alberto Moreno making his way back to the first team while Jordon Ibe started as well. The rest of the squad was pretty much unchanged as Raheem Sterling took the role of the sole striker, with Adam Lallana and Philipe Coutinho behind him. Meanwhile, Lambert and Lucas started on the bench, while Balotelli was out of the squad.
Liverpool didn’t look in the best of shape from the very start. Yet, it was Liverpool that took the lead in the 26th minute as Adam Lallana combine well with Coutinho to give the home team the lead.
Yet, after that goal Liverpool hardly threatened the opposition, while Crystal Palace kept on pressing the Reds with constant burst of attacks. Finally, the pressure paid off for Crystal Palace as they got a freekick just outside the penalty box. Palace have been one of the most successful teams with set pieces this season and Jason Puncheon demonstrated that strength yet again. A brilliant freekick totally beat Mignolet as the away team equalized two minutes before halftime and it remained that way by the end of the first half.
However, Liverpool’s were dealt another blow by Alan Pardew’s side within 15 minutes of the start of the second half as Wilfried Zaha, who came in from the bench scored a goal with his first touch and it was 1-2. While it seemed like he was slightly offside from the replays, yet the Reds’ defense too made their error in giving so much room to the opposing strike force.
Finally, in the stoppage time Crystal Palace were awarded a penalty which Glenn Murray missed initially but he scored the rebound to complete the scoreline. Sadly, this was the 11th loss of the season for Liverpool, who definitely seem to have lost their way after a resurgent run until February.
Liverpool’s final game of the season will be away at the Britannia against Stoke City FC. It will be the final game for Steven Gerrard at Liverpool after which he will be going to the USA to play from LA Galaxy. It is a sort of a must win game for Liverpool as failure to win might even put them at seventh place, as Southampton and Tottenham are closely behind. Southampton have a really good goal difference which will be hard to beat for Liverpool while Tottenham are only a point behind. Let’s hope that we can at least seal our Europa League position next week.