Liverpool make it to their third UEFA Champions League Final in five years


Photo: Stephen Gormley (Red Eye Photo Agency)

Liverpool produced a sensational second half performance in their UEFA Champions League Semi Final Second Leg to bounce back from two goals behind to defeat Villareal 3-2 in Spain on the night and 5-2 on aggregate.

The nature of Liverpool’s dominating performance and 2-0 advantage in the first leg last week at Anfield left many fans from both sides expecting the second leg to be a mere formality.

However, the Villareal players had other ideas and stunned everyone watching by deservedly cancelling the 2-0 advantage to the English team in a surprisingly one-sided first half.

It took less than three minutes for Boulaye Dia to take the lead for the Spanish side, banging the ball in from close range, much to the delight of the passionate Yellow Submarine fans.

Liverpool were given no time on the ball in midfield, the only chance in the first half falling to Jota on the break, which produced a good save from the keeper. Thiago and Keita had no space, and even Fabinio was finding it tough to stem the flow of Villarreal attacks. Robertson and Trent were not attacking the wings much and had to focus on defending instead.

Last year’s UEFA Europa League winners managed to capitalize further on their first-half dominance by going two up on the night and levelling 2-2 on aggregate just four minutes before half time. Robertson could not stop the cross coming in, and Coquelin rose above Alexander-Arnold to head it past a helpless Allison.

The Liverpool manager ran into the changing room at half time waiting for his players to come in, and according to Virgil Van Dijk, Klopp told the players “to stay calm and play like they have been playing all season long”.

Liverpool came out in the second half with Diaz on for Jota. The single change and the half time team-talk seemed to make the difference with better passing from Liverpool, a little bit more space and Diaz making the difference on the left.

Liverpool put their noses back in front in the tie with a low shot from Fabinho going through the keeper’s legs in the 62nd minute. Five minutes later, a ball came across from the right, and Diaz was there to head it into the net.

It was like a dagger to the heart of the Villarreal fans who knew their dream was almost over.

Liverpool sealed the thrilling second half come back with Sadio Mane running through on goal and getting to the ball before the keeper and sliding it home to make it 3-2 on the night.

The victory keeps Liverpool’s hopes of a historic quadruple on as they now dream of lifting their seventh European Cup.


Follow us on Twitter @ProstInt


About Author

Comments are closed.