Liverpool holds two-goal advantage over Villarreal

Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool did enough to take a solid lead for the second leg next week and would be confident of getting the job done.
Liverpool holds two-goal advantage over Villarreal
Liverpool players celebrate after scoring the opening goal against Villarreal

Liverpool: An own goal and a Sadio Mane strike earned Liverpool a 2-0 victory over Villarreal in the Champions League semi-final first leg at Anfield on Wednesday.

Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool did enough to take a solid lead for the second leg next week and would be confident of getting the job done. Villarreal defended in numbers in the first half, with midfielder Thiago Alcantara going closest to breaking the deadlock via a thunderous shot from distance that struck the post.

There were several half-chances for the host as Jordan Henderson drilled the ball into the side netting and Mohamed Salah floated an effort wide while Mane saw a deflected cross zip past the post. For most part of the opening 45 minutes, Unai Emery’s defence coped well, thanks to Pau Torres’ commanding presence.

But, Liverpool turned the heat on after the half-time interval. Moments after Fabinho saw his strike ruled out for offside, Henderson’s cross was deflected into his own net by Villarreal left-back Pervis Estupinan (53’). Two minutes later, Salah threaded a sublime pass for Mane, who put the match beyond the visitor.

Andy Robertson had a fine effort ruled out for offside after connecting a sweeping cross from Trent Alexander-Arnold while Virgil van Dijk tried his luck with a long-range thunderbolt which nearly knocked Villarreal goalkeeper Geronimo Rulli off his feet.

RESULT: Semi-finals: First leg: Liverpool 2 (P Estupinan 53(OG), S Mane 55) bt Villarreal 0

Related Stories

No stories found.