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Dublin: 6°C Thursday 26 November 2020


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Arsenal 2-1 Liverpool

Hello, and welcome to tonight’s liveblog.

Liverpool have three games left, and know they must earn victories in each to break Man City’s record tally of 100 points.

Arsenal, meanwhile, have endured a disappointing season that means they are unlikely to secure European football unless they can win the FA Cup.

Even if they win all their remaining games, they will finish on 59 points — their lowest-ever tally for a 38-match campaign.

Kick-off at the Emirates is at 8.15pm.

Confirmation of tonight’s teams…

We’re underway…

There hasn’t been too much to report on so far.

It’s been a scrappy opening, with neither side looking particularly threatening.

Big moment of relief for Martinez.

The goalkeeper tries to kick it clear, but Firmino gets the block in and it deflects onto the outside of the post before going out of play.

That would have been a crazy goal.

Firmino plays it through towards Robertson down the left. The full-back gets to the ball ahead of Luiz and his cross finds Mane, who has a simple tap in.

Liverpool have been the better side in these opening minutes, and now deservedly lead.

arsenal-v-liverpool-premier-league-emirates-stadium Arsenal's Alexandre Lacazette takes a knee and raises a fist in support of the black lives matter. Source: Glyn Kirk/NMC Pool/PA Wire

Arsenal have been really poor in these opening stages.

They’ve struggled to string even a few passes together, while allowing Liverpool to dictate the play.

Arsenal are back in this game and it’s due to a Van Dijk howler.

Under pressure from Nelson, the centre-back tries to play it back to Alisson, but Lacazette intercepts, before rounding the goalkeeper and slotting it into the empty net.

The Gunners have barely got a sniff so far, but perhaps that equaliser will galvanise then.

Mane gets on the end of a Robertson corner, pulling off Torreira.

However, the Senegal international cannot direct his header, which is a good few yards out from goal, on target.

Holding loses the ball in a dangerous area, with Fabinho getting in a tackle.

Firmino then plays it to Salah, whose goal-bound shot is blocked.

Arsenal lead and it’s another defensive howler from Liverpool’s perspective.

Alisson tries to play it out from the back but gives it to Lacazette.

The French attacker then crosses low for Nelson, who finishes clinically to give the hosts a surprise lead.

Half-time and Arsenal lead.

It’s been a strange game, as Liverpool have dominated for long periods, but they have been undone by individual errors at the back.

Arsenal, while being second best for the most part, have taken their chances well, and defended reasonably with the exception of the opening goal.

Jurgen Klopp’s side will be determined to recover. Should they fail to win, they will no longer be able to beat Man City’s record 100 points tally.

The second half has begun…

Alexander-Arnold gets booked for a nasty late challenge on Saka.

He was lucky it wasn’t a worse outcome than that, as it was a very high challenge.

Arsenal breathe a sigh of relief.

It’s like ping-pong in their box for a couple of seconds, as a number of Gunners players get blocks in to stop Liverpool shots hitting the target.

Alexander-Arnold plays a brilliant low cross.

Salah takes a touch, evading the challenge of Luiz, but it gets stuck under his feet slightly, before Martinez tips over his shot.

arsenal-v-liverpool-premier-league-emirates-stadium Arsenal's Reiss Nelson scores his side's second goal. Source: Glyn Kirk/NMC Pool/PA Wire

Arsenal make a triple change.

Torreira, Lacazette and Nelson are off. Aubameyang, Ceballos and Willock are on.

Alexander-Arnold crosses for Wijnaldum. However, the Dutch international can’t direct his header on target.

In terms of attempts on goal, Liverpool are leading 14-2, which highlights both their wastefulness and Arsenal’s proficiency in that regard.

Liverpool now make a double change.

Oxlade-Chamberlain and Firmino are replaced by Keita and Minamino.

Minamino nearly makes an instant impact.

After a pass through from Mane, he evades the challenge of Luiz and shoots just wide from a difficult angle.

arsenal-v-liverpool-premier-league-emirates-stadium Liverpool's Mohamed Salah has a shot on goal but it is tipped over by Arsenal goalkeeper Emiliano Martinez. Source: Glyn Kirk/NMC Pool/PA Wire

The ball breaks to Minamino in the area.

There are claims for a penalty, as Tierney appears to drag him back, but the referee ignores these protests.

Liverpool have had 92% possession the last 10 minutes, according to Sky.

Arsenal are certainly under the cosh.

As I type, Mane finds an unmarked Salah with a beautiful cross, but the Egyptian’s header is tame and straight at Martinez.

Robertson’s deep cross is met by Van Dijk.

However, the Liverpool defender can’t connect properly with the ball, under pressure from Xhaka.

Meanwhile, Arsenal make a change, with Maitland-Niles on in place of Cédric Soares.

Xhaka is down receiving treatment after sliding for the ball and appearing to hurt himself doing so.

That’s a slight worry ahead of the FA Cup semi-final, though it looks like he’ll be okay to continue.

Double change for Liverpool.

Wijnaldum and Salah are replaced by Origi and Shaqiri.

Now it’s Arsenal’s turn to make a change.

Kolasinac is on for Saka.

As I type, Mane sprints through on goal but can only find the side netting from a tight angle, under pressure from Maitland-Niles.

It’s like an attack-v-defence session now, such is the onslaught on the Arsenal goal.

As I type, Keita’s shot from distance deflects safely into the arms of Martinez.

Then, down the other end, Aubameyang’s cross finds Willock, who fires the bouncing ball first-time narrowly wide.

There will be five minutes of stoppage time…

Luiz heads away a hopeful Robertson ball into the box.

Arsenal have defended pretty well tonight.

Moments later, Alexander-Arnold’s shot from distance is deflected just wide.

So that’s that. 

Liverpool’s hopes of eclipsing Man City’s Premier League points record have ended.

It is, of course, only a minor blip on a sensational season for the Reds.

Jurgen Klopp’s men didn’t actually play too badly this evening.

Arsenal were clinical, taking advantage of the rare chances they got, while Liverpool were wasteful by contrast.

Individual errors from Alisson and Virgil van Dijk, gifting their opponents goals, also contributed to the visitors’ downfall.

Right, that’s all from me for now.

Thanks for reading and commenting.

You can read our report here and we’ll have more reaction to follow.

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About the author:

Paul Fennessy


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