A goal in the 98th minute from substitute Fabio Carvalho gave Liverpool a dramatic 2-1 win against Newcastle United at Anfield on Wednesday.
Newcastle debutant Alexander Isak, playing just hours after receiving his work permit, had given his new team a first-half lead with a fine finish, only for Roberto Firmino to equalise in the second half.
It looked like more dropped points for Jurgen Klopp’s side as the game ticked into stoppage time, but a late corner caused a goalmouth scramble, which ended in Carvalho scoring for the second time in a week.
Eddie Howe will be disappointed with the result but would have been pleased with the efforts of his team, who were missing key players Bruno Guimaraes and Allan Saint-Maximin.
90+ – The day after his 20th birthday, Fábio Carvalho has become the youngest player to score a 90th-minute winning goal in the Premier League for @LFC. It’s Liverpool latest Premier League goal since April 2011 (102nd minute, Dirk Kuyt vs Arsenal). Saviour. pic.twitter.com/u3j69551nL
— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) August 31, 2022
Isak had the first shot for the visitors as he cut inside Trent Alexander-Arnold and Fabinho before lifting his effort high and wide of Alisson’s far post, with Ryan Fraser also having a shot from the edge of the box that flew in the same direction.
Liverpool saw most of the ball in the first half but had to wait until the 34th minute for their first real chance after Firmino found Luis Diaz down the middle, only for the winger to miss the target from an angle after rounding Nick Pope.
Newcastle took the lead seven minutes before half-time when a Jordan Henderson clearance could only find Sean Longstaff, whose through ball picked out Isak to finish emphatically as he buried his shot into the top-left corner.
Isak had the ball in the net again early in the second half after good work on the counter attack but was marginally offside, and Liverpool were level shortly after as Firmino ran onto a Mohamed Salah pass from the right to sweep a shot into the bottom-left corner of the net.
It looked like a resolute Newcastle defence had held firm in the closing stages to secure a point, yet Salah nodded down to Carvalho from a corner, and the 20-year-old smashed the ball in off the crossbar from close range to send the home fans wild.
What does it mean? Liverpool almost frustrated at home again
The 9-0 win against Bournemouth at the weekend felt like a catalyst for Klopp’s men, who lost one and drew two of their first three games, but this performance appeared to be much closer to their untidy 1-1 with Crystal Palace than their electric undressing of the Cherries.
They were 5-0 up at the break on Saturday but had just five shots in the first half here, with none on target as the visitors defended strongly.
Liverpool kept going, though, and peppered Pope’s goal in the second half, having 18 further shots, with the final one from Carvalho making all the difference.
Isak makes strong start to life as a Magpie
Liverpool could argue they nearly dropped points largely down to officials at the Home Office, with Isak given a work permit just hours before kick-off.
The former Real Sociedad man was impressive on his debut, scoring one, having another disallowed and generally showing hard work and a good understanding of what his new coach wanted considering he has only just arrived.
Sleepy start from Liverpool despite win
Although it was a morale-boosting turnaround, Liverpool again fell 1-0 down, the 10th time in their last 13 competitive games the Reds have conceded first.
That being said, they often have enough to still get something, winning five of those games, drawing three and losing just twice.
Key Opta Facts
– Liverpool scored their 40th winning goal in the 90th-minute in the Premier League, the most of any side.
– Liverpool have scored three 90th-minute winning goals against Newcastle in the Premier League, with this their first against the Magpies since March 1997. This is the most 90th-minute winning goals Newcastle have conceded against an opponent in the competition.
– Liverpool’s winning goal was scored in the 98th minute (97:09), their latest Premier League goal since April 2011 v Arsenal (101:48).
– Firmino has scored in back-to-back Premier League appearances for Liverpool for the first time since December 2020 and the first time at Anfield since March 2019.
– Isak became the sixth Swedish player to score on his Premier League debut and the first since Zlatan Ibrahimovic for Manchester United v Bournemouth in August 2016.
Liverpool make the short trip to Goodison Park to face Everton on Saturday, while Newcastle host Crystal Palace later that same day.
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