Liverpool were crowned champions of Europe for a sixth time at the Estadio Wanda Metropolitano on Saturday evening as they overcame Premier League rivals Tottenham Hotspur 2-0.
The Reds was on the scoresheet almost from kickoff as Moussa Sissoko’s handball in the penalty area gave Mo Salah the opportunity to open the scoring, which he gladly accepted. The game itself following the opener was a tame affair as both sides struggled to adapt to the scorching Spanish heat. Divock Origi though struck late on after the coming off the bench to ensure Jurgen Klopp’s Reds got over last year’s defeat to Real Madrid to lift the UEFA Champions League trophy.
Stunning start for the Reds
With literally the first attack of the game, Liverpool were given their first chance at goal. Mane’s lofted cross hit the arm of Sissoko, with the referee pointing to the spot. Predictably, Salah was the man to take responsibility as he stepped up and drilled the ball down the middle to claim an early lead.
Despite the early opener, the game became more subdued as the first-half wore on with the only real chances falling to Trent Alexander-Arnold and Andrew Robertson – the latter’s effort being tipped over by Hugo Lloris.
Game of few chances
It was Spurs who resumed the better after the break as both Jan Vertonghen and Dele Alli both had powerful efforts blocked on their routes to goal. Mauricio Pochettino then attempted to shake things up as he introduced semi-final hero Lucas Moura onto the pitch.
It was an another substitute though that almost had an immediate impact. After replacing Gini Wijnaldum mid-way through the second-period , James Milner was teed up by Mane on the edge of the box but fizzed his low effort marginally wide.
Alli also had an excellent opportunity as he latched onto Kieran Trippier’s teasing cross but he could only lift his header over the crossbar.
Alisson preserves Liverpool lead
With the clock ticking down, Spurs’ desperation got more and more pronounced but with it they created a few chances. Liverpool stopper Alisson did well to at first parry a powerful effort from Heung Min-Son. The ball then fell to Lucas Moura but the Brazilian could only hit a tame shot straight at the goalkeeper. The former Roma stopper was then alive to paw away a dangerous free-kick from Christian Eriksen.
Son’s blushes were then also saved as he headed over from only a few yards out from a corner but the offside flag came to his aid.
Origi strikes again to secure Champions League crown
The game was to be decided in the final moments though but it was not quite in the nature that Tottenham intended. Spurs failed to clear a corner and Origi was played through at the back post, with the ball being slammed beyond Lloris into the far corner by the Belgian. With that goal, it put the rubber stamp on Liverpool’s sixth European trophy.
The clash in Madrid was certainly not a classic. Both teams really struggled to take the game by the scruff of the neck, with chances at a premium. The early penalty probably did not do the game any favours as it completely appeared to change the dynamic of the match. However, Liverpool had that clinical edge when it mattered, both early in the match and within the final few minutes to secure the trophy.
Tottenham Hotspur: Lloris (6); Rose (6), Vertonghen (6), Alderweireld (6), Trippier (7); Winks (6) (Moura (5), 66′), Sissoko (6) (Dier (5), 74′), Son (6), Eriksen (6), Alli (6) (Llorente (N/A), 82′); Kane (5).
Liverpool: Alisson (7); Robertson (7), van Dijk (7), Matip (6), Alexander-Arnold (7); Wijnaldum (5) (Milner (6), 62′), Fabinho (6), Henderson (7); Mane (6) (Gomez (90′), Salah (7), Firmino (4) (Origi (7), 58′).
Goals: Salah PEN (2′), Origi (87′)
Referee: Damir Skomina
Yellow Cards: N/A
Red Cards: N/A
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