Liverpool dominated from start to finish as they ran out comfortable 3-0 winners against Manchester City at Anfield in the Premier League on Wednesday night.
- Liverpool 3 Manchester City 0
- Lallana opens scoring
- Milner adds second
- Firmino completes the rout
Liverpool looked determined to avenge their League Cup final loss to the Citizens on Sunday and found themselves a goal up through a long-range effort from Adam Lallana in the 34th minute.
Seven minutes later, they were two ahead as James Milner burst through the defense to poke the ball beyond Joe Hart.
City continued to struggle to create chances and Roberto Firmino put the result beyond doubt when he scored Liverpool's third for the evening in the 57th minute to seal an unexpectedly comfortable win.
Reds manager Jurgen Klopp had given clear instructions for his players to press high up the pitch with the likes of Firmino, Divock Origi and Lallana hassling City defenders in possession early on.
The result had its desired effect as the visitors looked uncertain moving the ball forward and struggled to hang onto possession.
Unfortunately, it meant little goal-mouth action for the spectators and it took until the 23rd minute for the first real chance to materialise as Firmino tested Joe hard from the edge of the box.
Just as it seemed as it City were grabbing a foothold in the game, Liverpool nabbed the opening goal. Lallana was given too much space to move forward in the Citizens half and he hit a powerful low drive past Joe Hart from over 20 yards out.
The English midfielder was again involved for the second as he back-heeled the ball for Firmino, who threaded it through for Milner. The 30-year-old took the ball well at pace with a neat touch past the City defenders before sliding it past Hart in the 41st minute.
The home side continued to push after the break and a good ball from Jon Flanagan in the 48th minute allowed Milner to move it on to Origi in space in the box. However, the Belgian strikers shot from a tight angle was well blocked by Hart.
City manager Manuel Pellegrini threw caution to the wind in the 55th minute when he brought Kelechi Iheanacho on for Fernandinho to effectively create a 4-2-4 attacking formation.
It did not pay off however, and the Reds used the extra space in midfield to great affect in the 57th minute. Lallana poached the ball before beating a man and feeding it into Firmino, who clinically tucked the ball into the far corner to give Liverpool an unassailable 3-0 advantage.
Milner tested Hart again in the 60th minute, but the England international stopper pulled out a good save to deny his countryman.
The match slowed down significantly after the third goal as the home side retreated and made it very difficult for City to create anything.
Jordan Henderson went close from a set piece in the 84th minute, but there was no other drama as the time wore out and Liverpool claimed a morale-boosting win to hamper City's title aspirations.