Liverpool vs Fulham 3-1: Jurgen Klopp's side race to huge win, keep EPL race alive | Football News - Hindustan Times

Liverpool vs Fulham 3-1: Jurgen Klopp's side race to huge win, keep EPL race alive

Apr 21, 2024 11:14 PM IST

Liverpool vs Fulham: A must-win match for Jurgen Klopp's side turned into a thriller as Fulham fought with some determination, but only in patches.

Liverpool vs Fulham: The match started with a bang for Liverpool and Jurgen Klopp's side should have been two goals up within the first few minutes. However, as has been their habit lately, Liverpool’s men in attack wasted easy chances and allowed Fulham to stay alive in the match. In fact, Liverpool totally dominated the match for the first 10 minutes before Fulham got their act in order and started to attack the Liverpool goal in a purposeful manner. Remember that this season, Liverpool has had a tough time in trying to beat Fulham and it became apparent why when the side started getting a string of successful passes together.

Fulham's Bobby Decordova-Reid, top, duels for the ball with Liverpool's Ryan Gravenberch.(AP)
Fulham's Bobby Decordova-Reid, top, duels for the ball with Liverpool's Ryan Gravenberch.(AP)

Liverpool on the attack

In the third minute itself, Liverpool’s Jota almost scored after a superb pass from Alexander-Arnold came his way, with the ball being blocked on the line. It was a miracle the it did not end up in the goal. It was soon followed by another big chance for Liverpool. Yet another wonderful cross by Alexander-Arnold went straight to Diaz, but his downward header went inches wide.

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Another Liverpool chance that went abegging came in the 8th minute. Diaz was denied in the box by Bassey and immediately thereafter, a great cross by Jota was dealt with by Tosin.

However, after all these attempts, Fulham did manage to battle their way back into the match, but in the 27th minute, they lost the plot again, undoing much of the good work. It all started with a foul on Jotta in a great free-kick position. And Liverpool scored! The ball was hit home by Alexander-Arnold. It went over the wall and straight into the top corner of the goal with the goalie stranded. For some reason, Fulham had a much smaller wall than was ideal for a free kick in such a critically important position.

Fulham fights back

However, Fulham showed why they have been so tough to beat this season. In extra time added onto the first half, in the 47th minute, Fulham smashed in a stunning goal. It was full-back Castagne who stabbed the ball into the goal after an erratic attack that actually saw the ball inside the Liverpool box. Klopp was furious on the sidelines.

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Liverpool grab control

The 2nd half started and no changes were made by either manager. On the bench today for Liverpool is none other than Mo Salah as well as Alexis Mac Allister, Dominik Szoboszlai and Darwin Nunez. Klopp had chosen not to start them today.

The second-half got underway with Liverpool again on the ascendancy. Looks like Fulham have a slow-starting problem. Trouble with that is that strong teams like Liverpool will punish you immediately.

And that is exactly what happened as in the 53rd minute, Liverpool were back in the front courtesy a fantastic Gravenberch goal! All he had to do was to give himself some space and let fly! Liverpool vs Fulham 2-1.

After scoring, Liverpool went in all-out to score the third goal. A string of chances were created and wasted by the forwards again, leaving them susceptible to a Fulham counter-attack. Strangely, Fulham seemed to have gone off-colour after the break and were really just chasing the ball around rather than actually looking to snatch it away from the opposition.

And that was enough for Liverpool to punish them again. In the 72nd minute, Diogo Jota did the needful after being put through by a superb pass and put the match beyond Fulham. However, it was a touch-and-go affair for a while as it went to VAR for a suspected offside. But it was not Fulham's day and the decision went against them Goal stands.

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Immediately after the goal, Klopp substituted Jota, Diaz and Gravenberch for Mac Allister, Salah and Nunez! Even Alexander-Arnold had to make way for Gomez.

Fulham suddenly came alive after they gave away the third goal and attacked much more incisively, but all their efforts were thwarted at the last moment by the Liverpool defense. Too little, too late.

The referee added 6 minutes of extra time, but even that was not enough for Fulham to claw their way back into the match.

Liverpool keeps EPL race alive

It was a must-win game for Liverpool to keep both Arsenal and Manchester City within reach. And this win will certainly do that as Liverpool are level on points with Arsenal at 74 each. Gunners are ahead because of a superior goal difference. Manchester City are third with 73 points. However, while Liverpool and Arsenal have played 33 matches, City have played only 32.

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