Liverpool got the better of Manchester City for the third time this season after a 2-1 win at the Etihad Stadium on Tuesday booked their place in the UEFA Champions League semi-finals.
Manchester City 1 Liverpool 2
Jesus (2′) gives City best start possible
Sane (42′) sees goal ruled out for offside
Salah (56′) hits back for Reds on counter
Firmino (77′) completes comeback win
Jurgen Klopp’s side had to come from an early goal down in their quarter-final second-leg tie, however, after Gabriel Jesus fired the Premier League leaders in front just two minutes in.
But a superb second-half performance from the Reds saw Mohamed Salah equalise on 56 minutes, before Roberto Firmino completed the comeback 13 minutes from time to knock out City 5-1 on aggregate.
The hosts got off to the perfect start, although there was an element of fortune in their second-minute opener.
Virgil van Dijk gave away possession on the left touchline, but he appeared to be pushed out of play by Raheem Sterling, who was played into the space left by the Dutch defender, and he squared for Jesus to fire a first-time shot past Loris Karius from 12 yards out.
Kevin De Bruyne looked to make further inroads on eight minute with a curling effort from 25 yards out that cleared the crossbar, before the Belgian midfielder drew a routine save out of Karius with a first-time strike from 22 yards out in the 27th minute after connecting with Bernardo Silva’s cut-back.
City’s dominance continued and Fernandinho drilled a long-range shot wide of the left post on 37 minutes after Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain cleared the ball into his path, while Silva went close with an angled effort on the right that was deflected wide of the left post two minutes later.
After Oxlade-Chamberlain curled the ball straight into Ederson’s arms from distance on 41 minutes to register the Reds’ first attempt at goal, Silva saw his left-footed shot take a slight touch off Dejan Lovren’s head and hit the left post moments later.
The Citizens thought they had scored again within seconds when Karius punched the ball into James Milner and it rebounded to Sane, who stabbed home from close range, but the goal was incorrectly disallowed for offside.
Oxlade-Chamberlain threatened to equalise on the stroke of half-time after good link-up play with Salah, but after taking the ball past Ederson, the midfielder fired into the side-netting from a tight angle on the right.
The visitors started on the front foot in the second half as they interrupted City’s flowing game and it paid dividends on 56 minutes when Salah pounced following a counter.
Mane surged into the area after collecting a pass from Oxlade-Chamberlain and although Ederson saved at the feet of the Senegalese winger, Salah nipped in to chip the rebound into the right corner of the net from an angle on the left.
City looked to respond as De Bruyne hit a tame left-footed shot straight at Karius from 19 yards out just past the hour mark, before Lovren deflected Aymeric Laporte’s firm strike narrowly over the target on 70 minutes.
Sane found space on the left to dink a cross to the far post on 76 minutes, but substitute Sergio Aguero couldn’t steer his header on target under pressure from his marker.
But a mistake at the other end seconds later killed off the tie. Nicolas Otamendi dallied on the ball before slipping to let in Firmino, who advanced into the box on the left and tucked a shot beyond Ederson into the bottom-right corner of the net.