Liverpool 4-0 Barcelona (agg 4-3): 5 talking points as Reds seal historic Champions League win

Despite losing the first leg 3-0, Liverpool produced a remarkable performance to stun Barcelona and book their place in the final

Despite losing the first leg 3-0, Liverpool produced a remarkable performance to stun Barcelona and book their place in the final

Liverpool mounted one of the great Champions League comebacks on Tuesday night to stun Barcelona in the second leg and remarkably book their place in the final.

The Reds, having lost last week’s first leg 3-0, made the perfect start at Anfield and reduced the deficit after just seven minutes with Divock Origi on hand to tap in after Marc-Andre ter Stegen had saved Jordan Henderson’s shot.

Liverpool then stunned Barcelona with two goals in as many minutes as half-time substitute Georginio Wijnaldum struck twice to level the tie on aggregate.

The midfielder’s low shot squirmed under Marc-Andre ter Stegen before he nodded in from eight yards to give Liverpool fans hope of another appearance in the final.

And Jurgen Klopp’s men turned the tie completely on its head to take a 4-3 aggregate lead as Origi turned in a quick Trent Alexander-Arnold corner after Barcelona had switched off.

Here are five talking points from another memorable Champions League night at Anfield… 

Liverpool’s Divock Origi celebrates his second goal of the night 

  

Wijnaldum proves his importance

Wijnaldum endured a quiet first-leg last week, playing in an unfamiliar role further up field and he didn’t quiet have the desired impact at the Nou Campaign

So the Dutchman was dropped, perhaps harshly, for this crucial second leg, with Jordan Henderson and James Milner starting in midfield alongside Fabinho.

However Wijnaldum made an early arrival when he was a half-time replacement for the injured Andrew Robertson, and he couldn’t have made a better impact.

The former Newcastle star was on hand to notch Liverpool’s second and then a matter of minutes later scored an emphatic header to turn the tie on its head. 

Georginio Wijnaldum wheels away to celebrate his second goal for Liverpool 
Wijnaldum of Liverpool the third goal 

 

Origi delivers for Klopp 

Origi has made a habit of popping up with vital goals recently, his late winner against Newcastle on Saturday evening the latest example.

And, having been handed a rare start on Tuesday, he delivered another important performance for Jurgen Klopp’s men.

Liverpool knew they needed an early goal if they were to make a game of this, and Origi was the man to deliver. 

The Belgian was in the right place at the right time to get on the end of Henderson’s saved effort, and then continued to work his socks off up front.

And he wasn’t done just yet. He then showed great awareness to get on the end of Alexander-Arnold’s quickly-taken corner and secured a remarkable victory for Liverpool.

Origi tapped home the opening goal for Liverpool

  

Ex-Red proves the villain… again

After scoring the opener in last week’s 3-0 first-leg victory, Suarez somewhat angered Liverpool fans with his over-the-top celebration.

And the former Liverpool hero proved a nuisance in the first half at Anfield too, appealing for any decision no matter how ridiculous it was.

He also went down at every opportunity, even appearing to feign injury with the slightest of touches, in order to gain an advantage for his team.

Then late in the first half, he appeared to deliberate kick Andy Robertson and though the Scot initially appeared to run off the injury, he was replaced at half time.

Luis Suarez appeared to kick out at Andrew Robertson 
Robertson was unable to overcome the injury

 

Coutinho returns to Liverpool

Philippe Coutinho also earned hero status at Anfield, and rightly so, and he returned to play at the famous stadium for the first time following his departure last season.

He’s not quite hit the heights expected of him at Barcelona , but was given an opportunity to prove his prowess on Tuesday night. 

But the Brazilian failed to take it again, enduring a quiet night in which Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez did all the attacking hard work.

Tuesday’s version of Coutinho was a shadow of the player we saw during his Premier League spell, and he’s no doubt lacking the confidence to take control of games.

He was hooked off on the hour mark, having had an underwhelming match, and was even booed off the pitch by sections of the Liverpool support.

Philippe Coutinho returned to Liverpool on Tuesday night 
Coutinho was subbed before the hour mark

  

An unrivalled Anfield atmosphere

Is there a better atmosphere in football that at Anfield in the Champions League?

It’s certainly up there, and the Liverpool fans were intent of ensuring a rapturous atmosphere prior to kick off.

And that noise went up a few decibels when Origi tapped home the opener with less than 10 minutes played.

The Reds fans kept up the hostile atmosphere throughout, and it no doubt proved a headache for Barca as they made a string of uncharacteristic mistakes in both halves.

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