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Looking Back at Liverpool's First Leg Match Against Arsenal

LFCTransferRoom
LFCTransferRoom
 2022-01-20

Liverpool will be facing off against Arsenal once again on Thursday to decide which side will be heading to Wembley to play against Chelsea in the final. The first leg fixture ended 0-0 at Anfield with an early red card to Granit Xhaka in the first half causing the match to turn completely.

Unfortunately, The Reds not only weren't able to score in that game but also weren't able to register a shot on target until stoppage time in the 2nd half.

Liverpools lack of progressive runs and quick passing is what hampered them in the first leg. They weren't able to get into dangerous positions and were too reliant on deep crosses to truly trouble the Arsenal parked bus.

This came in the first game played with a full strength starting XI that didn't feature Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mané, and Naby Keïta due to AFCON. Although this may appear concerning, in the following Premier League match last weekend, the African trio's departure didn't stop Liverpool from putting up three goals.

It is hard to use the 1st leg fixture as any indicator of what the 2nd leg will be like, considering Arsenal sat 10 men behind the ball for almost 70 minutes, which skews the numbers heavily.

However, a big takeaway is that when Curtis Jones was subbed in for James Milner, the attack looked much more deadly. Will Jürgen Klopp opt for the 20 year old with a little more flair and attacking presence or will he stick with the experience in a massive game?

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Diogo Jota IMAGO / PA Images

One thing is clear going into the 2nd leg and that is that Liverpool will need more out of Diogo Jota than what they got last week, as he was not able to register a single shot in that game. He is the most in form attacker available for this match and it will be imperative that he is clicking on all cylinders if The Reds want to advance to the final.

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