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Liverpool v Chelsea Live Commentary, 4/14/19

2 - 0
S. Mané (51)
Mohamed Salah (53)


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Liverpool's next league match is a trip to Cardiff City next Sunday, but before then they have to see through the second leg of their Champions League quarter-final against Porto. Chelsea are also in European action in midweek, welcoming Slavia Prague to Stamford Bridge for the second leg of their Europa League quarter-final, before then taking on Burnley eight days from now on their return to Premier League action.
Liverpool reclaim top spot in the Premier League, albeit having played a game more than Man City, thanks to their first win over Chelsea at Anfield since 2012. Salah, Mane and Hazard had opportunities to score in a goalless first half, and the match was ultimately decided in a two-minute spell early in the second period. Mane converted a Henderson cross to open the scoring for Klopp's men and Salah added a world-class second as the home supporters were still celebrating the first. Hazard could not make the most of two good chances soon after, hitting the post from one and testing Alisson with the other, leaving his side's top-four hopes in the balance.
90' + 2' Hazard works the ball on to his right foot and sends in a hopeful cross. Kante gets his head to it but the attempt lacks power and direction, allowing Alisson to claim it once it drops out of the sky.
90' + 1' Three minutes have been added on at Anfield. Liverpool are very nearly over the line!
X. Shaqiri
Mohamed Salah
90' Shaqiri comes on for the final stages of the match, giving Salah - the scorer of another world-class goal today - a breather.
89' KEPA MAKES THE SAVE! Mane drives past two players and gets a shot away at the end of the move, which Kepa parries into the air at his near post. Liverpool are good value for a third goal.
88' Van Dijk launches the ball into the air and Kepa is caught in no man's land. The Chelsea keeper is unable to handle the ball outside his box and Mane knocks it past him, but it rolls out of play before he can think about converting into an empty net.
87' Liverpool's game management has been very good. Chelsea should have scored in the five minutes after falling two goals behind, but since then their goalscoring opportunities have been few and far between. The hosts have around five or six more minutes to see through.
85' Robertson slips when under no real pressure just inside his own half and Chelsea pounce. Unlike that famous fixture from five years ago, though, the Blues do not make it count as Hazard overhits a pass straight to Alisson.
83' Mane's cross from the left is well defended by Azpilicueta, though it is at the expense of a corner. Liverpool will take that, giving them a chance to eat up some more seconds as we enter the closing stages.
81' Hazard, unsurprisingly, is proving to be Chelsea's most likely route through on goal. The forward looks far more comfortable out wide, being given space to run into. His cross towards Higuain is cut out by Alexander-Arnold.
80' SAVE! The latest Liverpool corner is headed away by Barkley at the front post. It comes back into the mix and, after turning Jorginho, Firmino's powerful shot needs dealing with by Kepa.
78' Azpilicueta is furious with a decision made by the referee. He is already on a yellow so he has to be careful. Liverpool are pushing on for a third goal, meanwhile, winning another corner which is worked short and glanced behind by David Luiz when it arrives in the six-yard box.
J. Milner
J. Henderson
77' Henderson is unable to shake off the injury sustained a couple of minutes ago. Milner comes on and goes to the left of Liverpool's midfield three.
R. Barkley
R. Loftus-Cheek
75' Henderson is caught by Kante and is in need of some treatment. Chelsea use the stoppage in play to make a change, bringing on ex-Everton midfielder Barkley for Loftus-Cheek.
75' Bar a five-minute spell after Salah's strike, Chelsea have offered little in this second half. Liverpool are looking the more threatening team, with Salah slipping in Henderson, who delays the cross for too long when he has bodies to his left.
73' GREAT PLAY! Alexander-Arnold turns Higuain on the left of the box and all of a sudden he has space in front of him. The full-back goes for goal rather than looking for a team-mate, and Kepa has another routine save to make.
71' The deep free-kick from Alexander-Arnold is a little flat. Fabinho watches it all the way but the final touch comes off a Chelsea player as Liverpool win another corner.
70' Salah's strike was his first goal from outside the box in the Premier League since January 2018 (v Man City). He has the most goals in all comps of any PL player since start of last season (66), one more than Tottenham's Harry Kane.
68' Klopp is barking out instructions down on the sideline. Liverpool have done well to take the string out of the match over the last few minutes, This match is far from over, however - one goal for Chelsea changes the mood completely.
G. Wijnaldum
N. Keïta
66' Keita makes way for Wijnaldum for the final 25 minutes. Klopp clearly wants some more control of the ball in central midfield.
65' NEARLY A THIRD! Salah carries the ball into the box and tries to beat Kepa at his near post. The Chelsea keeper is aware that the shot is coming, though, and he makes a fairly comfortable save in the end.
64' Liverpool, on the ropes after those two chances for Hazard, go into attack mode as they try to kill off the match with a third goal. The game has become incredibly open - perfect for the neutrals among us! There is no way this one is finishing 2-0!
62' Willian slots the ball through for Azpilicueta, who is unable to pick out a team-mate when looking up. Chelsea are seriously knocking on the door for a goal, which would change the complexion of the game completely.
61' ALISSON DENIES HAZARD! If Hazard hitting the post was not a wake-up call enough for Liverpool, this certainly will be. The forward's first-time shot from 10 yards is kept out by Alisson down low, but he should have been burying it after doing the hard work by finding some space.
59' OFF THE POST! It should be game on at Anfield! David Luiz plays a ball over the top that Hazard, kept onside by Keita, brings under control with a brilliant first touch. The forward has just Alisson to beat but he picks out the upright with his effort.
57' Liverpool are swarming all over Chelsea now, looking good value for a third goal. The Reds came out for the second half fired up and they have surely sealed the win within eight minutes of the restart. Firmino's side-footed shot from outside the box dips wide of the target.
G. Higuaín
C. Hudson-Odoi
56' Higuain comes on for Hudson-Odoi, who has had a quiet game. Hazard will now shift into his favoured left-sided position.
54' Salah is now the joint-leading scorer in the Premier League this season, alongside Sergio Aguero. Mane's goal was well worked; Salah's strike was just out of this world.
V. van Dijk
53' Van Dijk is credited with the assist as it was his pass that gave Salah the chance to cut inside and score a goal of the season contender. What a strike that was!
Mohamed Salah
53' GOOOOOAAALLL!!! LIVERPOOL 2-0 CHELSEA! Two goals in two minutes for Liverpool!! This is an unbelievable strike from Salah, trapping the ball with a good first touch towards the right-hand flank, cutting into the middle and then arrowing it into the top corner of the net from 25 yards. Kepa barely had time to react!
J. Henderson
51' Henderson is a player reborn in this more advanced position. He makes the most of some hesitancy from Emerson and picked out Mane at the back post.
S. Mané
51' GOOOOOAAALLL!!! LIVERPOOL 1-0 CHELSEA! Liverpool have started the second half with far more urgency to their game and they have been rewarded through Mane's close-range header! Henderson clips the ball towards the back post and Mane is not going to miss from a few yards out, giving the home fans the goal they craved.
50' The throw-in is not dealt with by Chelsea and Keita, on the scoresheet in Liverpool's last two matches, gets plenty of power behind his shot. He got under it, too, sending the ball into the stands.
49' The ball falls nicely for Alexander-Arnold to strike 25 yards out. Willian closes it down and makes a good block, with the ball spinning out for a throw rather than a corner.
48' The shot is not an option for Salah when carrying the ball in from the right. The ball is worked to the opposite flank and the cross is cut out when it arrives in the middle. Liverpool are having to remain patient in their build-up play.
46' RESTART! Chelsea, who will surely consider this a positive point as things stand, get us back up and running at Anfield!
Sarri was forced into a change before the interval, bringing on Christensen for the injured Rudiger, so he will have to use his remaining two substitutions widely. Giroud and Higuain are options if the Chelsea head coach wants to change things around, while Liverpool have Shaqiri, Sturridge and Origi among their attacking back-ups.
There is nothing to separate the sides after 45 minutes as they go into half-time all square at 0-0. Salah wasted what would prove to be the best opportunity of the half early on when volleying Mane's cross into the ground and straight at Kepa, and roles were reversed half an hour later as Mane guided a first-time shot wide when picked out by his team-mate. Chelsea have relied mainly on counter-attacks for their opportunities, coming closest to a breakthrough goal when Hazard turned Matip inside out but failed to beat Alisson at his near post.
45' + 1' Alexander-Arnold sends in a superb swinging cross that Firmino gets a touch to five yards from goal. Kepa makes a fine reaction save down low, but the offside flag would have ruled out the goal even if he did not make the stop.
Yellow Card
44' Azpilicueta, who has enjoyed a good first half, puts his arm across Mane to halt his opponent's run and earns the first yellow card of the half.
43' Alisson plays his side into trouble with a poor pass straight to Loftus-Cheek. Willian eventually gets a shot away but it is blocked inside the box. There is then a nervy moment for Christensen as he is forced to put his foot through the ball.
42' Chelsea play some quick passes in Liverpool's half of the field. The Reds have pretty much everyone back, though, forcing their opponents to go all the way back to Kepa.
A. Christensen
A. Rüdiger
40' This is a big blow for Chelsea before half-time as Rudiger hobbles off the field, unable to shake off the knee injury sustained earlier in the half. Christensen is the player to take over.
40' Rudiger goes down for the second time this half and, unlike 20 minute ago, the centre-back is not going to be able to continue. Sarri is readying Christensen to come on.
39' CLOSE! Loftus-Cheek is dispossessed in the opposition half. The boot is on the other foot as Liverpool hit their opponents on the counter. Salah squares it for Mane and he tries to whip it into the top corner with a first-time shot from 10 yards, missing the target by inches. 
37' Chelsea are not making the most of their counter-attacking opportunities. Hazard runs towards the box but there is no way through and he has no other options.
36' There has only really been one clear-cut chance so far at Anfield - Salah's shot six minutes in that Kepa was equal to. We are without a goal but this game has been very gripping.
35' Yet another dangerous moment for Liverpool to see out. Kante flicks the ball into the feet of Hazard, who spreads it out to Willian on the left. The ball eventually falls for Loftus-Cheek 25 yards from goal, but he is crowded out by a sea of Liverpool players.
33' Liverpool have had 66 per cent of the ball - 82 per cent in terms of the last five minutes - but Chelsea are looking just as threatening when they get on the ball. This match is nicely poised with a little over half an hour played, as Salah's cross is headed away by David Luiz.
31' Chelsea's defenders are standing firm to everything that has been thrown at them so far. They get their chance to counter as David Luiz picks out Willian with one simple pass, but the forward blasts wide of the target when being forced into a central position.
30' Chelsea have lost their last five Premier League away games against fellow big six opponents, including all three this season by an aggregate score of 11-1. However, the Blues have won three of their last four away league games against sides starting the day top, including a 2-0 victory at Anfield in April 2014.
28' Sarri's side defend back-to-back corners as Liverpool start to take back control of the match. Hudson-Odoi, Willian and Hazard are all well positioned for the counter as and when the visiting side turn over possession, which has not been all that often so far.
27' Salah does superbly to head Fabinho's pass down for Henderson to strike. The powerful shot is going wide but it is blocked by David Luiz and goes behind for a corner.
26' Liverpool's tempo has dropped over the last five or 10 minutes, not helped by the stoppages in play. Chelsea are seeing more of the ball, but they are at their liveliest when hitting the home side on the counter.
24' Robertson plays a good one-two and gets the ball into the box. It is rather fizzed at Firmino, however, and the Brazil forward is unable to keep it under control. Rudiger is back on the field.
22' There is another stoppage in play now as Rudiger has hurt his knee in a challenge with Mane. The players accidentally clashed knees and the Chelsea defender has come out second best.
21' FIRST CHELSEA SHOT! Hazard times his run well to get on the end of Willian's pass in behind. He turns Matip inside out but the angle is against him and Alisson keeps out the shot at his front post.
20' WEAK EFFORT! Rudiger cuts out Keita's pass before Mane can get on the end of it. Liverpool's pressure continues and Keita has a weak angled shot kept out by Kepa, who is by far the busier of the two goalkeepers.
18' Liverpool have dominated the game but Chelsea have had the odd promising moment on the counter. Willian covers a lot of ground towards the left but the move breaks down when Hazard is flagged for offside on the edge of the box.
16' Liverpool's players did not really appeal the penalty decision a minute or so ago, but replays show that David Luiz did make contact with Salah. Still, it would have been very harsh had a spot-kick been awarded.
15' PENALTY APPEAL! Salah carries the ball past Willian and tries to do the same when one-on-one with David Luiz near the byline. The Chelsea defender takes a risk by trying and failing to win the ball, but there is not enough contact on Salah to warrant a penalty.
13' Mane makes a good run in behind which Salah spots. Azpilicueta is well positioned to block Mane's run, though, and Kepa gathers the ball.
12' Hazard limps off the pitch but soon makes his way back on. He looks as though he will be OK to run off the injury.
11' Hazard tries to break clear after possession is turned over. Fabinho takes out his opponent but, crucially, he appears to get some of the ball before the man. Hazard stays down and the Chelsea physios are on - this is not a good sign for Sarri!
10' Liverpool have enjoyed a two-minute spell of knocking the ball around, further settling themselves into the match. The hosts are constantly trying to play the ball between the lines, with in-form midfielder Keita key to that strategy.
8' Chelsea have been caught on the ball a couple of times in the early stages. The home team have control of the game and have already created a good opportunity, which Salah failed to make the most of.
6' FIRST CHANCE! Hudson-Odoi gets back to help out defensively, blocking Mane's path down Liverpool's left. Mane is played into some space down moments later, though, and his cross is a good one, met by the left boot of Salah. The Egypt forward has a free shot at goal but he hits it into the ground and Kepa makes a routine save.
4' Hazard, playing through the middle in the absence of Giroud and Higuain, tries to get in behind but the flag goes up for offside.
3' Robertson floats a cross into the area from the left. It is held up in the air by the wind and Kepa is able to gather it inside his six-yard box. Robertson has been heavily involved early on, as he so often is.
2' Keita and Robertson link up high up the pitch but Azpilicueta ensures that there is no room for the former to break into.
1' KICK-OFF! Following an impeccably observed minute's silence to mark the 30th anniversary of the Hillsborough disaster, Liverpool get the game underway. What a huge match this is!
The two teams are now out on the field at Anfield and we are moments away from kick-off.
Chelsea have only lost twice in their last 16 meetings with Liverpool in all competitions, and both of those defeats came at Stamford Bridge. The Blues' last defeat at Anfield was in May 2012, winning three and drawing five here since then.
The big team news as far as Chelsea are concerned is that Higuain and Giroud are both among the subs, so Hazard will play through the middle of the front three, flanked by Willian and Hudson-Odoi, who is making his third league start in a row. The visitors make six changes from their trip to Prague on Thursday, though in terms of alterations from their 2-0 win over West Ham six days ago there is just one new face - Willian coming in for Higuain. 
Liverpool make two alterations to the side that beat Porto 2-0 in their Champions League quarter-final first leg here on Tuesday. Both those changes come at the back, as Robertson returns from suspension to replace Milner and Matip is preferred to Lovren. Those changes were expected, and Klopp has otherwise decided to stick with the same midfield and attack, meaning there is only a place on the bench for Wijnaldum. Sturridge, who scored a late equaliser in the reverse league fixture in September, is also included among the subs.
Chelsea subs: Ross Barkley, Gonzalo Higuain, Andreas Christensen, Mateo Kovacic, Willy Caballero, Pedro, Olivier Giroud.
CHELSEA (4-3-3): Kepa Arrizabalaga; Cesar Azpilicueta (c), Antonio Rudiger, David Luiz, Emerson Palmieri; N'Golo Kante, Jorginho, Ruben Loftus-Cheek; Willian, Eden Hazard, Callum Hudson-Odoi.
Liverpool subs: Xherdan Shaqiri, Daniel Sturridge, Simon Mignolet, Dejan Lovren, Divock Origi, James Milner, Georginio Wijnaldum.
LIVERPOOL (4-3-3): Alisson; Trent Alexander-Arnold, Joel Matip, Virgil van Dijk, Andy Robertson; Jordan Henderson (c), Fabinho, Naby Keita; Mohamed Salah, Roberto Firmino, Sadio Mane.
This is not a fixture Liverpool tend to do well in, though, failing to win any of their last six Premier League matches against Chelsea at Anfield - they have never endured a longer winless home run against an opponent in the competition. Maurizio Sarri's men also came away with a 2-1 win here in the third round of the EFL Cup in September, though the stakes are obviously a lot higher in this latest tussle. The Blues, like Liverpool, head into the game with some momentum on their side as they have won three in a row in the top flight and four in a row overall, accounting for their midweek triumph away to Slavia Prague in the Europa League.
Liverpool face the toughest of their remaining title tests as they play host to top-four hopefuls Chelsea. Jurgen Klopp's side have recovered from their recent mini wobble by winning four league matches in a row, but they head into this match occupying second place as Manchester City defeated Crystal Palace a short while ago. One point adrift of City with just five matches to go, the Reds will be desperate for all three points today to keep the pressure on the reigning champions, who still have Tottenham and Manchester United to face.
Hello and welcome to our live coverage of the Premier League meeting between Liverpool and Chelsea at Anfield.