Southampton 0-0 LIVERPOOL
Liverpool fall to second place in the Premier League table after their second goalless draw of the season gained them a point in Southampton.
A number of Liverpool players had been selected to play for their country during the international break and a couple had even picked up short-term injuries, though Coutinho had been declared fit enough to play for Liverpool upon his return to club football while Adam Lallana was not fit enough to play in this fixture. Much of the team remained from our last victory, though.
Liverpool haven’t really faced a team in such severe weather conditions since we were defeated 2-0 by Burnley in the rain (http://www.anfieldfamily.com/burnley-2-0-liverpool/ for info on that) and Southampton was just as horrible to be out in for the players. I suppose we’re lucky we didn’t get beaten in the rain this time around.
It wasn’t for lack of trying that saw Liverpool suffer this goalless draw. We had Wijnaldum, Mané, Coutinho and Firmino all rushing forwards towards the opponent’s goal whenever the ball was in our possession. Before half time, Mané had almost scored twice but was denied once by Virgil van Dijk and once by Fraser Forster saving them from conceding.
After the break, Coutinho and Firmino were seen consistently teaming up together, assisting each other and ending up in dangerous positions that really should have produced a goal but did not. Southampton were playing on the same wet pitch as Liverpool but the goals were not coming when we needed them to.
The referee did not help matters. He’s supposed to be neutral of course, but Liverpool were not playing at Anfield and we could have been awarded a few decisions that could have made difference to the final result. Potential penalty decisions were made and denied for us. In harsh weather it’s not always the most obvious to tell if the player has slipped over in the wet conditions or if the defender actually did bring the attacker down to the ground by fouling them. Liverpool did not get awarded any penalties though.
Liverpool haven’t had a goalless draw since we played Manchester United and it was only the third fixture of the season where we have failed to score at all (Burnley and Man United being the two other teams where it happened). Despite this, other teams haven’t had as much consistency with some of the other important Premier League fixtures ending in draws that saw Manchester United and Arsenal only claim 1 point against each other. Arsenal had been sitting right underneath us previously. Man City now pose the biggest threat to our league position being lowered as they won, gaining two points more than both Liverpool or Arsenal did today. Goal difference is still playing a big part in the race for the title this season, especially when teams are equal on points.
Man of the Match?
Sadio Mané returned to his former club who had gained £34 Million upon selling him to Liverpool and seemed to be the most confident of all the former Southampton players we have. A key part of all our attacks, Mané tried hard to help us secure a point and could have potentially got us more. His accurate shots were very close to being goals and he was only denied by excellent defending from Southampton.
Liverpool come back to Anfield to face Sunderland in more exciting Premier League action soon.
Until then, walk on with hope in your hearts 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.