Goalkeeper Simon Mignolet was not surprised by Philippe Coutinho’s “very special” goal in the second leg of Liverpool’s Europa League tie against Manchester United – because he has been on the receiving end of similar efforts in training.
With the first half drawing to a close and his side trailing 1-0 at Old Trafford, Coutinho produced a moment of individual brilliance to bring the visitors level on the night.
The Brazil international managed to trick his way past Manchester United full-back Guillermo Varela before delicately lifting the ball over goalkeeper David de Gea from a tight angle.
Mignolet says his team-mate’s strike came at the perfect time, as Liverpool had seen their 2-0 first-leg lead cut in half by Anthony Martial’s 32nd-minute penalty.
“From where I was it was difficult to see how tight the angle was,” the goalkeeper told the Liverpool Echo.
“But I’ve seen it back and it was a very special goal. He got past the defender and the finish from that angle was just incredible. Philippe made it look so easy.
“I wasn’t surprised because I see him do that every day in training. He scores goals like that past me. I know what he’s capable of.
“He’s such a good player for us and he helped us get the job done against United.
“Phil scored at exactly the right time, just before half-time. It changed the game.”
Having knocked out United 3-1 on aggregate, Liverpool will next face manager Jurgen Klopp’s former side Borussia Dortmund in the last eight of the tournament.
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