It was a game of close margins as two close finishes from Jota and Firmino saw Liverpool through against Arsenal. Check out the match report, opinions and tweets from last night’s game here!
A game of narrow margins and Jurgen Klopp’s Reds always know how to pull off results out of those. In the blink of an eye, two neat finishes of the highest order changed the complexion of the game in the span of eight minutes.
The first half of the game was even, as many had expected but without any goals. One could say Arsenal were even the better team till the first goal, but goals are the most vital.
3 things guaranteed in life, death, taxes and Jota scoring against Arsenal.
— Chunkz (@Chunkz) March 16, 2022
At the 54th minute mark, a pinpoint threaded pass by Thiago Alcantara found its way to Jota.
The Portuguese was running at the Arsenal defense and kept doing so, before smashing the ball into a small pocket of space left by Ramsdale near post.
📊 STAT: Diogo Jota's last three appearances at the Emirates Stadium:
— Anfield Watch (@AnfieldWatch) March 16, 2022
Diogo Jota has scored seven times against Arsenal since moving to Liverpool, with 5 of those at the Emirates. He truly loves himself a game against the Gunners, doesn’t he?
Just a little later, Firmino put in a cheeky outside boot to finish off the game. Robertson got the ball after a failed clearance by Saka, and the left-back ran with the ball till he put it on a platter for the Brazilian, who finished it with rather ease.
Firmino’s movement in such a small area to operate is why he’s elite. Small margins and more depth. LFC to win the title. Our boys did good, we getting there 💪🏾
— Ian Wright (@IanWright0) March 16, 2022
Arsenal are a good team, it’s certainly a fact that Arteta’s changed their whole outlook and aura. However, Liverpool never seemed to be moved or at unease during the whole game and they showed it in the 2nd half.
A night when you saw exactly why Jurgen Klopp loves Roberto Firmino, why everyone loves Alisson Becker, and why you should never doubt this Liverpool team.#LFC
— Neil Jones (@neiljonesgoal) March 16, 2022
Almost as if this was a game between Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool of 16/17 versus the current one. A team in the ascendancy against a team settled, sure of itself and brimming with the demeanor of champions.
Klopp, Pep sing each other’s praises ahead of English ‘El Clasico’
Just before Sunday’s all crucial fixture, Jurgen Klopp has showered his rival Pep Guardiola in high praises. The German has called his Spanish compatriot Pep Guardiola the best manager in the world.
Not sure many Reds fans would agree with that one, though. The Gaffer’s comments came after Pep Guardiola jokingly admitted to overthinking allegations in the Champions League.
Klopp defends Pep Guardiola in the press
Guardiola commented that the solution to his overthinking might be to just ‘play with 12 players.’ This comes as City have blown away their huge lead in the league over Liverpool from the start of the year.
Jurgen Klopp when asked about Guardiola’s comments, he went onto explain what Pep actually meant. Read what the German said below.
“It was ironic! I saw there was a story in Ecuador this week which claimed I didn’t understand Luis Diaz. You[journalists] have a responsibility on this planet.
If you want to talk to us then please do us a favour and help us. Pep said ironically, ‘I overthink, and I like overthinking’.”
Not only this, the German then went onto claim Guardiola is the best manager in the world.
“Pep is the best coach in the world. I think we would all agree on that and it might be a coincidence that it didn’t work out in the Champions League so far. If anybody doubts him, I have no idea how that could happen.”
The Bromance goes both ways, as well. Pep has several times termed Klopp’s Liverpool as the toughest team he’s ever encountered.
Guardiola says Klopp makes world football a ‘better place’
When asked about he thinks of Klopp’s comments, Pep denied that he thinks he’s the best. He further said he’d love to have a drink with the German if City won the game, jokingly.
“Jurgen makes world football a better place to live. His message, he is a huge competitor.”
Over the likes of SAF’s Man United, Jose’s Madrid and Inter, and even Simeone’s Atleti. Needless to say, Klopp rightly deserves that praise. Out of all those managers, Klopp has the best record against Guardiola.
Many have termed this game as the biggest in recent English history and dubbed the English ‘El Clasico’.
The duo are evenly tied at 9 wins each and 4 draws out of their 22 encounters throughout the years. The game is setting up to be a potential title decider with Liverpool in red hot form currently.
MATCHDAY: Liverpool go to the Emirates in crucial title fixture
Read up the matchday preview as Liverpool visit the Emirates in one of their most crucial games in the league. Liverpool’s trip to Emirates is set up to be increasingly important in the upcoming title race.
Matchday Preview: Liverpool travel away to the Emirates to face Arsenal
Liverpool will be going away to the Emirates to keep up their push for the Premier League this season. If they snatch a win here, they can in touching distance of the league leaders.
The Reds currently sit at second place in the league, a point less than leaders Man City. However, since Pep’s team played a goalless draw against Crystal Palace earlier this week, Reds have their best chance to close the distance.
Arsenal, on the other hand, will be looking to cement their top four spot ahead of Man United. Arteta’s men are impressing on all fronts recently, as proven by their 5 consecutive win streak in the league.
Fans are gearing up for the game to be a cracker, with immense attacking talent on display on both sides.
Venue: The Emirates
Time: 8:15 pm local time
Referee: Michael Oliver
Reds supporters will be delighted to hear that Moh Salah is back in contention for the game, possibly. All this comes after the Egyptian suffered a foot injury in Liverpool’s weekend game against Brighton.
However, It still remains to be seen whether he can make the starting XI or not. If not, Klopp will have to choose between Jota or Firmino.
📺 Jurgen Klopp on Mo Salah's injury record:
"He’s worked on his body, it’s his body but obviously you cannot, there’s no miracles. Players are more vulnerable than others and Mo has obviously the right mindset, the right attitude and the right body for it as well.” 🔴 pic.twitter.com/8MkFinxd2m
— Anfield Watch (@AnfieldWatch) March 15, 2022
Possible Starting XIs
Liverpool: Alisson; Alexander-Arnold, Matip, Van Dijk, Robertson; Henderson, Fabinho, Thiago; Salah, Mane, Diaz
Arsenal: Ramsdale; Cedric, White, Gabriel, Tierney; Odegaard, Partey, Xhaka; Saka, Lacazette, Martinelli
Result Prediction: Liverpool to edge it out at the Emirates
Arsenal 2 – 3 Liverpool
While Arsenal have been on an impressive run as of late, Liverpool are on an even better streak. With the Reds clicking at the right time of the season, we expect them to exploit Arsenal’s defensive woes.
The Gunners have been left exposed at times at the back due to their high press up the pitch. Opponents haven’t fully cashed in on that weakness, but Jurgen Klopp and his men are a different caliber altogether.
Klopp drops big hints about his future at Anfield ahead of West Ham clash
Jurgen Klopp has further elaborated and clarified his answer regarding his future at Anfield
Jurgen Klopp has added on details to his answer about his future on Friday as he sought to clarify himself.
The German whose contract at Liverpool ends in 2024. When asked if he will continue at Liverpool post 2024 ahead of the Norwich clash midweek, he had a simple answer.
He uttered merely half a sentence, a phrase if you will.
“I don’t know, I really don’t know.”
Jurgen Klopp on his future:
“The plan is still the same. Nothing has changed and if I decide to leave in 2024, it’ll be nothing to do with the quality of the squad. All we do is for the long term. This club must be even better when I am not here anymore." #awlive [lfc] pic.twitter.com/1TZaepCEGm
— Anfield Watch (@AnfieldWatch) March 4, 2022
Too simple one might say, yet it was more than enough to cast a flurry of headlines in its wake. He later admitted he realized what he had said, but could not do anything about.
To clarify what he meant, Klopp was asked once again before the clash against West Ham. He had this to say: “The plan is still the same.”
“I realised when I gave the answer, I thought, “Oh god!” but I couldn’t get it back. I was just not in the situation.
“The plan is still the same. Nothing changed really and when I decide, or if I decide to leave, maybe I get the sack in ’23, who knows?”
He further added his decision wouldn’t depend on his squad. “But if I decide in ’24 that I will stop, it has nothing to do with the quality of the squad.
“It’s not “My god, I have to manage them,” or “My god, better to stop than be managing them.” It’s not like this, nothing to do with that.
“All the things we do are for the long term. All the things we do are for the long term. This club must be even better, especially when I am not here anymore. That’s the plan.
Klopp on competing for trophies:
“We give it all we have but the only problem is so do other teams. City are here and we push each other to a high level. We don’t set ourselves a limit." #awlive [lfc]
— Anfield Watch (@AnfieldWatch) March 4, 2022
“That’s what we are working on so it’s not important how long I will stay, it’s much more important how we do until then.”
However, all this means is that he has not yet decided upon his future after his deal runs out. This was the same case when he was at German clubs Borussia Dortmund and Mainz.
Regardless, he may still prolong his stay in Liverpool as he did so in 2019. He also gave team news ahead of the game tomorrow, read all about it here.