What a night of football, a game that showed a very contrasting level of play between two very familiar foes.
Liverpool- S Mané (28′), A Robertson (34), D Jota (88′) 3-1 Arsenal -A Lacazette (25′)
The reds might be champions but they are not showing any signs of slowing down anytime soon, at least not at this moment. Jurgen Klopp’s men still maintain their perfect start to the season. This match really exposed the midfield naivety of the Gunners as the Reds matched on to Victory in a very comfortable fashion.
The game started brightly with Liverpool taking supreme control of the game from the very first minute of the game, dictating tempo as they pinned Arsenal back in their own half. Arsenal was lucky not to concede an early goal when Trent Alexander-Arnold’s shot was deflected onto the crossbar after a corner kick was headed down to his path. But it was the Gunners who drew the first blood in the 25th minute of the game, totally against the run of play with Andrew Robertson sending a wrong pass into the path of Alexander Lacazette, who finished off with a bouncing shot over the onrushing Allison to put the Gunners in front. But the lead only lasted for 3 minutes as Liverpool found the net in the 28th minute through Sadio Mane, who just loves scoring against the Gunners, tapping the ball into an empty net after a brilliant run down the right flank from Salah, who beat Kieran Tierney with ease and fired a fierce shot at Leno, who punched the ball into the path of Mane to draw the scoreline level. Moments later in the 34th minute, Liverpool were ahead in the tie, this time it was the right full-back Alexander- Arnold who crossed the ball for his fellow fullback Robertson, who took a touch before calmly slotting into the net of Leno to give Liverpool their much-deserved lead heading into the break.
on what he learned from tonight's defeat...
“We are in a different journey to Liverpool. They’ve been together for five years and they weren’t able to do what they’ve done tonight two or three years ago, that’s for sure. They have a lot of good work, a lot of belief in the way they play, great recruitment and they’ve improved the players that they have. This is what we have to try to do. They set the bar and they’re probably the best standard that the Premier League has seen in many years. This is where we have to get and obviously we’re still a long way from getting there.”~ Mikel Arteta
After the restart, it was a monumental shift of play by the Arsenal midfield, who looked very lackluster in the first half. Mikel Arteta taking off Granit Xhaka and bringing on Dani Ceballos, who brought creativity to the Arsenal midfield. Moments later, Ceballos played through Lacazette, who found himself in a one-on-one situation but was too clumsy as he tried to lob the ball over Allison but failed. Alexander Lacazette will later find himself again in a similar position again as he was played through one-on-one again, and this time he tried to round the keeper but failed again. Arsenal will later be punished for not taking their chances in the 88th minute when Diogo Jota, signed from Wolves and brought on as a substitute for Roberto Firmino, found the net to put the final scoreline at 3-1 to ensure that the Champions continue their perfect record to the season.
Mikel Arteta has got some work to do on that mediocre Arsenal midfield that was dragged apart by a resurgent Liverpool, but he barely has time to do that because next up for the Gunners is another revisit to the Anfield stadium for another clash in the 4th round Carabao cup just in the next couple of days.
Match Review by Patrick Alexander