«Мы разочарованы, нет даже повода улыбнуться. Тяжело принимать это. Тяжелая неделя, было два подряд интенсивных выездных матча, и сегодня мы были недостаточно свежими как морально, так и физически.
Было очень много эпизодов, когда мы слишком легко дарили мяч сопернику. Мы упрощали жизнь «Брайтону», но и они выглядели здорово.
«Брайтон» выиграл заслуженно, сомнений нет. Для меня важнее сейчас найти объяснение, как подобное произошло, и понять, что же случилось сегодня вечером. Мы выглядели неубедительно.
Мы были недостаточно свежими. Нужно с этим разобраться. Каждый наш футболист способен играть лучше, чем сегодня. Я их знаю, тут дело не в том, что они не хотели. Причина должна быть другой», – сказал Клопп.
Liverpool had one shot on target as Brighton bent the match to their will at Anfield and emerged with a deserved victory
Right then, I’m off. Here are tonight’s match reports. Bye!
Fantastic result, fantastic performance. It had everything. Real courage when we had the ball, when we didn’t have the ball, defended with our lives as a team and limited a good team to not too many chances. And at the same time I felt we had a few ourselves. You have to come here and be disciplined and I thought we were. The players worked so hard, ran for each other, reacted well when we made mistakes or the opponent was on top. I can’t speak highly enough of the character of the performance, it was sensational. We’re just trying our best in this league every game, every day we face a huge task. It’s one for the supporters, for everyone involved in the club, because it’s not often a club like us come here and win. We’ve been on a good run. I think that’s four clean sheets in a row. But we’ve got another game on Saturday, this league is incredibly punishing, so we have to go again.
Here’s Pete Lansley on Aston Villa 1-3 West Ham:
Jesse Lingard rewarded David Moyes’s faith in rescuing him from his Manchester United doldrums with a goalscoring contribution to the win that means West Ham have achieved their highest top-flight points tally after 22 games since 1985-86.
The former England winger, having signed on loan on Monday, provided signs of the spark that marked out his early-career promise before scoring West Ham’s second goal at the start of the second half and, after Ollie Watkins had pulled one back nine minutes from time, the clinching third.
Brighton are 15th tonight, 10 points clear of Fulham in 18th. But they’ve been desperately unlucky at times this season, could easily have another half-dozen points and be floating merrily in mid-table, and surely won’t be bothered by genuine relegation concern this season.
“Outplayed to be honest,” writes Rory Kenneally. “Disappointing. Hopefully the new signings mean our midfield can get back to being midfielders and us back to our best but it looks like retaining the title is no longer on the cards.” It does look very much like that: Liverpool are seven points behind Manchester City, who have a game in hand, and victory at Anfield on Sunday is surely essential, but this side don’t have the look of champions.
Andy Hunter has already filed his match report from Anfield:
The need to defeat Manchester City at Anfield on Sunday has become more pressing for Liverpool. Just when it seemed the Premier League champions had reinvigorated their title defence with successive away wins at Tottenham and West Ham, they succumbed to a second consecutive home defeat as Brighton executed a perfect gameplan to record their first league victory at Anfield since 1982.
Steven Alzate, with a huge slice of fortune, delivered a memorable win for Graham Potter’s side who defended superbly all night and possessed the quality to trouble Liverpool on the few occasions they broke forward. Creatively and clinically, Jürgen Klopp’s team were found wanting again and find themselves seven points behind the league leaders ahead of Sunday’s encounter.
Liverpool won seven of their first eight home games and drew the other, but in that time won only two of nine away from home. Since then they have lost two of three at home and drawn the other, but have a 100% away record. Go figure.
It is apparently the first time in the history of the Premier League that five or more games have all been won by the away team.
Also over: Aston Villa 1-3 West Ham
There were five Premier League games today, and five away wins.
90+5 mins: It’s all over! Brighton were defensive, sure, but they bossed that game and thoroughly deserved to win it.
90+3 mins: Liverpool win a corner. Kelleher doesn’t come up, disappointingly, and Sanchez comes decisively to claim Alexander-Arnold’s cross.
90+1 mins: There will be four minutes of stoppage time. Liverpool look as far away from scoring as ever. Brighton flick a long ball forward to Connolly, who has a player unmarked behind him, screaming wildly and repeatedly for the ball, but ignores him and heads to the touchline instead.
89 mins: At the other end Bissouma sends in a 30-yarder that swerves and dips, but still clears the bar by 10 yards or so.
89 mins: Liverpool find Robertson in the penalty area, and his first touch would have opened up a shooting chance had Origi, on a rare foray into the penalty area, not got in the way.
87 mins: Liverpool look a side in need of a plan B. Salah and Alexander-Arnold are still manoeuvring space on the right, Robertson is the one other player regularly contributing to attacks (indeed, he just got on the end of a Salah cross), Origi doesn’t seem any keener on penalty areas than Firmino was.
85 mins: GOAL! West Ham seal the points at Villa Park, and it’s a second for Lingard, whose low shot seems to go straight through Martinez on its way into the net!
83 mins: Connolly replaces Maupay for the last 10 minutes or so.
82 mins: GOAL! Aston Villa have pulled a goal back against West Ham, a fine first-time finish from Watkins, and another assist from Grealish. They are now 1-2 down.
81 mins: Save! Maupay holds the ball up long enough for a few teammates to join him, and Trossard dribbles into the area, heads first one way and then another, and finally blasts a shot towards goal that Kelleher blocks!
80 mins: Brighton have 10 men in their own area, and have had for much of the last few minutes. They are therefore unable to break, but Liverpool are unable to break them down.
78 mins: Firmino spears a shot wide from 23 yards, and that’s his final touch as Curtis Jones comes on to replace him.
77 mins: Salah blasts a shot into Bissouma’s shoulder, and from the rebound Milner’s shot bounces limply into Sanchez’s arms. That’s presumably the home side’s first shot on target, then.
76 mins: Another save! Maupay plays a first-time pass to Burn, but Kelleher saves his shot and Burn was anyway marginally offside.
74 mins: Save! Gross takes a corner from the left, which comes out of the other side of the area, is sent back in, and deflects to Gross, who has ghosted to the corner of the area. His low shot would have snuck in, but Kelleher palms it away.
73 mins: Liverpool are upping the tempo now. Firmino slides a pass through to Salah, but Webster executes an outstanding tackle. Then Oxlade-Chamberlain sends a 20-yarder over the bar.
72 mins: Robertson is thus not in the right position when the ball is played down Brighton’s right for Maupay, briefly threatening to cause a bit of chaos.
71 mins: Firmino, now in the left-back position and really quite determined not to attack unless it’s absolutely essential, fluffs a pass through to Robertson.
70 mins: Chance for Liverpool! A good move ends with Alexander-Arnold in space on the right, and he is able to look up and pick out Salah with his pull-back, but the Egyptian sends his shot high!
70 mins: There has still only been one shot on target in this game. “Did a quick dip into Liverpool fan TV and they are having a complete meltdown,” reports Mary Waltz. “FFS is being screamed at least every 30 seconds, the refs are the spawn of Satan and even Klopp is being slagged. Very amusing to this Everton fan.”
68 mins: The free-kick is half-cleared and sent back into the area, where Dunk does the most ridiculous mime of being shoved by Phillips. The ball bounces past them both and through to Firmino, but his shot is blocked, and anyway the officials have completely bought the Dunk mime.
68 mins: March is unable to continue, or for that matter to walk from the pitch unaided, and Lallana comes on.
66 mins: Alexander-Arnold is fouled, not far outside the penalty area, but before the free-kick is taken March goes down, the physios come on, and they spend a while flexing and poking his right leg.
65 mins: Origi goes to centre-forward, with Firmino retreating to the left. He really has offered the flimsiest of threats here.
64 mins: Liverpool take off Shaqiri and Wijnaldum, and bring on Origi and Oxlade-Chamberlain.
63 mins: Milner is fouled by Bissouma 30 yards out, and Thiago lifts the free-kick over the defence towards Firmino, but the ball bounces unkindly and Webster gets back to boot clear.
59 mins: Webster heads high from a Brighton corner, and from an acute angle. They’re dominating this game at the moment.
58 mins: The sudden goalstorm continues with Jesse Lingard scoring on his West Ham debut to put his side 0-2 up at Aston Villa!
The visitors take the lead! It’s an excellent cross from the right that finds Burn running behind an entirely oblivious Alexander-Arnold at the back stick. He heads it back across goal, where it comes off the side of Phillips’ boot, hits Alzate’s, comes off Trossard and goes in!
55 mins: GOAL! No, not in this game! West Ham have taken the lead at Aston Villa, with Tomas Soucek scoring again.
53 mins: Alexander-Arnold picks out Firmino’s run into the area, but the ball arrives at an awkward height. Firmino decides to stoop and attempt an outrageously difficult flicked header, which he completely misses.
50 mins: Bissouma’s left leg slides from under him as he stretches his right foot towards the ball, leading to him doing the splits and going down in pain. Not only does he recover, he also does his shoelaces as gets up while still wearing gloves. The coordination of these players never ceases to amaze me. I’ve never got the hang of gloved shoelace-completion.
49 mins: Bissouma lifts the ball over Liverpool’s defence towards Trossard, but Alexander-Arnold gets himself in the way and Kelleher collects.
48 mins: Nearly a chance! Dunk excellently blocks Shaqiri’s cross, then gets up to get himself in the way of Firmino’s shot.
46 mins: Liverpool get the ball rolling.
The players are back out, both sides unchanged. Can Liverpool find a breakthrough? Will Brighton steal a goal? Time to find out...
It’s not hard to notice an issue with Liverpool’s shape here - it’s just doesn’t seem designed to threaten the bit of the pitch where Brighton’s goal is.
45+2 mins: The first half is over, and though Brighton have had only 38% of possession other than that early Salah miss the visitors have looked more likely to score - Liverpool have only had one other shot on goal.
45+1 mins: From the free-kick Gross eventually crosses, and Maupay sends a free header high and wide!
45 mins: Wijnaldum takes a poor first touch, and as he reaches in an attempt to retain possession he lands a boot on Maupay’s foot. He is booked.
42 mins: There has been very little attacking action from Liverpool. Salah has been bright, but most of his contributions have been wide on the right, linking up with Alexander-Arnold, rather than coming inside and combining with Firmino or Shaqiri.
37 mins: West Ham are having slightly better of the general play at Villa Park, with much the better chance creation. They have had 75% of the 12 shots, and 100% of the four on target.
34 mins: It’s not just in defence that Brighton are committing impressive numbers. They counter, and as March gets the ball on the right of the area four blue shirts are sprinting into the box, and another one is lurking just outside it. He ignores them all, cuts onto his left foot and shoots over the bar.
31 mins: The ball deflects to Salah, central and 20 yards out, but a defender flings himself in the way of a shot. Without wanting to downplay Brighton’s efforts here this game is a little dry. So, here’s a comment on a different one. “While Everton have indeed played very well, Gylfi was gifted his first,” notes Kari Tulinius of the Leeds match. “He was allowed to stroll to the end of a cross and slot the ball in as if he was the fifty something club legend in a charity game where every goal raises twenty thousand pounds for a veterinary hospital.”
27 mins: More than a quarter of the game played, and no shots on target. As Liverpool labour to find a way through Brighton’s massed ranks, that early Salah miss becomes increasingly inconvenient.
24 mins: Chance for Brighton! Trossard passes to Maupay, who runs into the area, cuts inside Henderson, cuts inside Milner and then has a shot that deflects to Burn, who boots the loose ball over the bar from 10 yards.
23 mins: Leeds have pulled a goal back against Everton, Raphinha in the 48th minute.
20 mins: They’re also clearly well organised, and defending deep and in massive numbers - there are normally at least nine players behind the ball, and Trossard sometimes comes back to join in.
19 mins: Brighton are so far dealing with Liverpool’s hit-lofted-balls-over-the-defence strategy by being tall.
16 mins: Brighton’s best if probably their only attack of the game so far ends with Phillips booting clear a left-wing cross. Brighton recycle the ball, and their next move ends with Phillips booting clear a right-wing cross (though Gross was offside in the buildup).
13 mins: Salah’s cross from the right floats just over Milner’s head, a development that clearly astonishes Shaqiri just behind him, because the ball just hits him in the chest and bounces to a defender.
9 mins: Milner plays Firmino through, but the Brazilian has nowhere to go and nothing to do as he runs onto the ball at pace, a foot or two from the byline. Sanchez comes out, and any contact would have been welcomed by Firmino, but the keeper puts the brakes on just in time. Goal kick. “Super football match at Elland Road,” writes Gary Naylor of this evening’s third match, the 7pm kick-off between Leeds and Everton. “Plenty of space on a slick, relaid pitch and both sides are playing with great energy, heads up and taking every chance to go at their direct opponent. Everton two up, but Leeds could come back easily.” I’ve seen it described on the Twitter as Everton’s best away performance of the season.
8 mins: The theme so far is Liverpool passing the ball around the defence for a while before hitting a long pass towards Salah on the right or Robertson on the left, but since that early Henderson bullseye none have found their target.
5 mins: Milner closes down Burn, who thwacks the ball into his thigh with sufficient force to send the Liverpool man down to the turf for a while, wincing.
3 mins: Chance for Liverpool! Henderson picks out Salah’s run off the right with a fantastic pass from the halfway line, and the Egyptian’s first touch is pristine and opens up the goal only for his second to send the ball floating way over the bar!
1 min: Game on! Brighton get the game started.
The players are out, and just moments away from kicking off. As they do so, Dominic Calvert-Lewin doubles Everton’s lead at Leeds, where it is now 0-2.
Here’s a report on Manchester City’s latest victory:
Jurgen Klopp has a pre-match chat:
We have to be compact, we have to play football based on the formation, especially in this game today because Brighton is a football-playing side. We have to be really on our toes to make sure they cannot do exactly what they want. Apart from that we have to create as well, and do the right stuff. Alisson is ill, and not Covid, thank God. Not seriously, but this morning he was not well and then we could not bring him. [Davies] drove behind me on the way to Anfield. I’m not sure if he knows the way, but he followed me. He’s had two sessions but not real session because we played the other night, it was more an extended recovery.
“To reply to Peter Oh’s point about Salah’s shirt being on Gomez’s peg, the reason is that they are having to space out the shirts so the players are socially distanced,” points out Pete Tomlin. “If Salah used his normal peg, he would be sitting right next to Firmino.”
This is clearly true. This photograph also proves that Davies actually has his own alcove already, between Mane and Oxlade-Chamberlain and just four down from Kabak’s.
Manchester City have completed a humdrum 2-0 win over Burnley, and are riding a wave of 12 successive victories in all competitions all the way to Anfield, where they are scheduled to pitch up on Sunday.
“I noticed that the kit man placed Mohamed Salah’s kit in Joe Gomez’s alcove,” writes Peter Oh. “I realise Gomez is out with a long-term injury but I thought modern football is all about details and fine margins.”
So Ben, you don’t have a nametag or a comfy leather seat, you can perch on this uncomfortable wooden bench or just use the corridor, yeah?
Despite their recent reinforcements Liverpool’s defence looks more ragged than ever with Alisson out with a mystery illness. Otherwise the only change is Firmino’s return in place of Origi. Ben Davies, their new centre-back signing from Preston, is on the bench. Brighton make two enforced changes to the side that beat Spurs, bringing in Burn and Alzate, and leaving out Veltman and Mac Allister.
Liverpool: Kelleher, Alexander-Arnold, Phillips, Henderson, Robertson, Thiago, Milner, Wijnaldum, Shaqiri, Firmino, Salah. Subs: Adrian, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Jones, Tsimikas, Origi, Davies, Rhys Williams, Cain, Neco Williams.
Brighton: Sanchez, Burn, Dunk, Webster, White, Gross, Bissouma, Alzate, March, Maupay, Trossard. Subs: Karbownik, Connolly, Lallana, Moder, Tau, Zeqiri, Walton, Weir, McGill.
Referee: Kevin Friend.
After spending months insisting they didn’t want to bring in any defenders, and then 24 hours apparently attempting to bring in every defender, Liverpool host Brighton with two new centre-backs on their books and fresh hopes of perhaps maybe improving on their record of only keeping three clean sheets at home this season. Of the new arrivals only Ben Davies is able to play in this game and even he probably won’t, while Ozan Kabak’s registration was delayed by the need to get international clearance for his move from Schalke. “We play obviously different to Preston and obviously different to Schalke,” Jurgen Klopp pointed out. “They will need time but we don’t have a lot of time. So we will use the time we have in our hands and try our best. If they would have to start [this game] together, I think that would not be too cool. We will give them a few more days.” Recent performances suggest that integration of new defenders can be done merely in extreme hurry, rather than in a state of blind panic.
Brighton will overtake Newcastle if they draw, and Burnley if they win (unless Burnley beat Manchester City in their 6pm kick-off), with a tasty visit to Turf Moor coming up on Saturday. Having only lost to City, Arsenal and Leicester in their last 10 league games, and with two wins in their last three, they might even come to Anfield with just a soupçon of hope. “I don’t think you should ever face a game with fear,” says Graham Potter. “It is more respect and an understanding of what they are capable of. Clearly if they play well and they have some luck, they should beat Brighton. That is just where it is. But football isn’t necessarily like that.”Continue reading...
The need to defeat Manchester City on Sunday has become more pressing for Liverpool. There will be no title defence unless Jürgen Klopp’s team rediscover their way at Anfield, and fast.Continue reading...