Liverpool 1-1 Chelsea: Willian’s Late Magic Earns Chelsea Vital Point in Anfield Thriller

Liverpool and Chelsea shared the spoils, playing out a 1-1 draw in what was a lively match at Anfield.

The Reds welcomed Adam Lallana back to their squad, with Jurgen Klopp starting him on the bench, alongside Sadio Mane and Roberto Firmino.

A freshly shaven Antonio Conte, meanwhile, started Danny Drinkwater in place of Cesc Fabregas, rather shockingly, but also had the luxury of naming Victor Moses on the bench following several weeks without him due to an injured hamstring.

Both teams raced out of the blocks at kick-off, showing their attacking intent early on. 

Mohamed Salah, a former Blue, kept his old team busy on the right flank, showing his pace and flair on every possession. Eden Hazard was just as electric for Chelsea, and would force Simon Mignolet into a good save with a shot from outside of the box midway through the first half.

Liverpool v Chelsea - Premier League

Liverpool were made to weather another scare after a Chelsea corner, with the ball bouncing through to several blue shirts before being cleared.

Then a moment seemed to open up for Salah in the 27th minute when he found a shot in the box after a clever turn. Andreas Christensen, though, was on hand to poke it away.

The Egyptian beat Thibaut Courtois with a stinging shot from the edge of the box nearing the halftime mark, but he beat the right post as well. And the teams would head into the half with a 0-0 scoreline, despite entertaining the masses.

Sevilla FC v Liverpool FC - UEFA Champions League

The second half came about, and began in the very fashion the preceding period had. Hazard kept up his livewire act in the opening minutes, while Salah appeared a bit more subdued.

Ironically, however, the former Chelsea man would be the one to break the deadlock, slotting quite calmly past Courtois in the 64th minute after Tiemoue Bakayoko failed to get a proper foot on Philippe Coutinho’s pass that found him in the box.

Conte sent Fabregas on in the 73rd minute in attempts to help his team claw their way back into the match, with Drinkwater making way despite a very decent performance. Bakayoko was then taken off three minutes later for Spanish forward Pedro.

The Chelsea boss threw on his last piece with eight minutes to go, taking off Davide Zappacosta for Willian. And the Brazilian’s impact was immediate, as he put the Blues level with something quite magical, albeit possibly unplanned, just two minutes later, chipping Mignolet from the most unlikely spot in the box.

Klopp made a notable substitution of his own, handing Lallana his very first appearance of the season with two minutes left in regulation. 

Salah got himself a shot from the edge of the box in the 90th minute, but Courtois was equal to it this time around, keeping it out for the Blues, who went through three minutes of added time before they heard the final whistle, having earned what now looks to be a crucial point.

Lineups

Liverpool: Mignolet, Gomez, Matip, Klavan, Moreno, Henderson, Milner, Coutinho, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Salah, Sturridge

Subs: Karius, Wijnaldum, Firmino, Mane, Lallana, Robertson, Alexander-Arnold

Chelsea: Courtois; Azpilicueta, Christensen, Cahill (c); Zappacosta, Drinkwater, Kante, Bakayoko, Alonso; Hazard, Morata

Subs: Caballero, Luiz, Rudiger, Moses, Fabregas, Willian, Pedro

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