A somewhat controversial James Milner penalty helped to continue Swansea’s awful run with only one solitary league win in 10 premier league matches. They even took only one point from a possible twelve.
It is also marked as Klopp’s first home league win as a Liverpool manager. Jurgen Klopp made two forceful changes to his team from last week’s win as Jordan Ibe and Christian Benteke deputized for injured Phillipe Coutinho and suspended Lucas. Liverpool came into the match with an outstanding win against Manchester City, last week and securing the knock-out phase of Europa League midweek.
The home team tried to maintain that momentum with pressing high since the whistle blew. They nearly got the reward as Bartley guided the ball to his own post when he tried to take the ball away from goal bound Jordan Ibe. Liverpool continued to press so high that Swansea players could not breathe even in their own half. Still Liverpool could not manage to find any shot on target in that period. Swansea had hardly any ball to create anything and the first half finished goalless. Benteke is a very good goal scorer and target-man but Liverpool missed the free-flowing mobility of the last match due to absence of Coutinho.
‘The Reds’ started second half brightly once again as Ibe forced a brilliant save from Fabianski. However, Liverpool struggled to break the dead-lock from a well packed defense and it seemed that the game was on it way to be another of those frustrated nights until Ibe’s cross hit the extended hand of Neil Taylor and the referee pointed directly to the spot. His arms were high enough, though he did not the face the ball. The resulting penalty was converted by James Milner who also scored from spot midweek. Then Liverpool fans were happy seeing the long anticipated return of Captain Jordan Henderson and Daniel Sturridge. Swansea tried hard to find an equalizer but custodian Simon Mignolet was never literally tested.
A not very convincing display from Klopp’s men but a very welcome three points took them to the 6th position of the table, 4 points shy from the top 4 and 6 behind leaders Manchester City. Klopp has to work hard to open this kind of defense at home, but he will be delighted to get both Sturridge and Henderson back to the squad. Now he will face a tough test to choose his first team but he can create a lot of dimensions in attack with the duo. Swansea remained at the 15th position, only 4 over the relegation places. They have to play much better to get back to winning way.
Liverpool: Mignolet, Clyne, Skrtel, Lovren, Moreno, Can, Milner, Ibe(Toure 90’), Firmino (Henderson 64’), Lallana, Benteke (Sturridge 71’)
Swansea: Fabianski, Naughton, Bartley, Williams, Taylor, Ki, Britton (Cork 65’), Ayew, Sigurdsson, Routledge(Montero 72’), Eder (Gomis 69’)
|Shots (On target)||10 (8)||2 (0)|
|Passes (passing accuracy)||436 (82%)||370 (83%)|
|Fouls (Bookings)||12 (3)||6 (1)|
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Photo by darren-brown