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Arsenal vs. Liverpool — Match Recap

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Well, that was something else.

A 3-3 draw, 6 different goal scorers and a blown Liverpool lead turned a match destined for 3-0 into arguably the match of the season.

Serious question: At what point did you actually know who was going to win?

Was it when Liverpool went up 1-0 off Coutinho’s header? Possibly, but then again Liverpool have struggled to protect leads as of late (Sevilla in the Champions League, Everton in the Merseyside Derby). 1-0 Reds.

Or was it Salah’s goal to double the lead for the Reds? I sure thought it was. Liverpool firing on all cylinders. Controlling possession, taking chances, good shots. 2-0 Reds.

No, no. Wrong.

In fact, some lazy Joe Gomez defense made this game impossible to call as it allowed Alexis Sanchez to provide hope with a forceful header between Mignolet’s legs. 2-1 Reds.

And then came the fireworks. Mignolet failed to keep out a rocket from Granit Xhaka no more than 2 minutes later as the Gunners came level. Why on earth Mignolet went up with only 1 hand on a shot that honestly could’ve been saved is beyond me. But…that was a hell of a shot. 2-2 all.

Sadly, Arsenal weren’t done with the dagger to Jurgen Klopp’s side, as some clever passes eventually found Alexandre Lacazette in the box. Yet Lacazette didn’t shoot, instead opting to play a back heel flick to a running Mesut Ozil who then cheekily placed his shot over Mignolet and sent the Emirates, Arlo White, Graeme Le Saux and our editor Jason Hannigan into a state of euphoria. 3-2 Gunners.

Stunned and bloodied, Liverpool clawed their way back into the game, with Roberto Firmino eventually finding some space in the box to rip a shot that Cech sent into the air only to have to drop down into the net. 3-3.

And that’s how the match ended. A few flurries late put fans on the edge of their seats. In fact, Ozil almost stole the game from a deflected cross that Mignolet palmed over with only one hand. Simon, God gave you two for a reason. 3-3 full-time.

TAKEAWAYS

  1. Mohamed Salah is the Player of the Year, and we should all accept that. 15 goals and 4 assists is one thing, but the creativity, energy, pace, attitude and consistency he has brought to Liverpool has made him one of the most sought after talents as of late.
  2. I will pay Simon Mignolet double his weekly wages if he uses his second hand the next couple games. Please, for my sake, just do it.
  3. It was also cool to see Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain get into the match against his old club. He was rather quiet, however, coming on in place of Coutinho with just 5 minutes left. What wasn’t quiet were the boos raining down from the Emirates. Loud and constant. The man played 6 years and over 130 games for you, what do you want?
  4. Emre Can played well in the midfield for Liverpool, providing some much needed physicality and mental strength after the Reds went down. A true shame for the Reds if they let him leave for Juventus in the transfer window.
  5. Mesut Ozil IS worth it. Not going to lie, I doubted him early on in the year. But with 3 goals and 3 assist in the last 7 games, I’m changing my stance. I’ll have to doubt him again when he leaves for United and Old Trafford, however.

MAN OF THE MATCH

Don’t know if there is one. Salah is a good bet. Ozil played well. Maitland-Niles looked good at times, then not so great at others. Sanchez had passion and a goal. I’ll say Salah for now. I’m biased. Sue me.

FINAL THOUGHTS

This exciting match was open and free flowing, the kind of thing a non-biased fan would have loved to see.

Liverpool and Arsenal always have pretty solid clashes that are entertaining, the 4-3 game from last season’s opener for example.

This does put a damper on any hopes these teams had of catching Manchester City (as if there was a chance. It’s wishful thinking, look it up) as a draw leaves Liverpool and Arsenal 4, 5 in the table.

All in all, a fun match. 3-3. Lots of fun. Drama. Comeback. Suspense. Terrible goalkeeping. But that’s football.

Thanks, and chat me in the comments. I want to talk football with you, the Fan.

-Cal

 

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