This site uses cookies to improve your experience and to provide services and advertising. By continuing to browse, you agree to the use of cookies described in our Cookies Policy. You may change your settings at any time but this may impact on the functionality of the site. To learn more see our Cookies Policy.
Dublin: 10 °C Sunday 20 October, 2019


22,993 Views 31 Comments

Hello, and welcome to today’s liveblog.

As always, we’d love to hear your thoughts on the game. E-mail, tweet @the42_ie, post a message to our Facebook wall, or leave a comment below.

You may need to refresh the page for YouTube videos and other elements to display correctly.

Kick of is at 12.30pm.

Here are the teams…

Watford: Gomes; Janmaat, Kaboul, Britos, Holebas, Doucoure, Chalobah, Amrabat, Cleverley, Pereyra, Okaka.

Subs: Pantilimon, Prodl, Femenía, Watson, Capoue, Richarlison, Gray.

Liverpool: Mignolet, Alexander-Arnold, Matip, Lovren, Moreno; Can, Henderson, Wijnaldum, Salah, Firmino, Mane.

Subs: Karius, Klavan, Gomez, Milner, Grujic, Solanke, Origi.

Slight glitch in our system with today’s lineups but all is back to normal!

No Philippe Coutinho for Liverpool. The player handed in a transfer request yesterday but is out of the matchday squad with a back injury, Liverpool have said.

No Adam Lallana or Daniel Sturridge either, with both players still ruled out with thigh injuries.

For Watford, record signing Andre Gray starts on the bench, with Tom Cleverly in midfield having moved from Everton this summer following a loan spell last season.

A lot is also expected of Nathaniel Chalobah today. The 22-year-old joined Watford from Chelsea on a five year deal and starts up front.

Mohamed Salah gets his first Premier League start for Liverpool following his £39.5 million move from Roma.

He scored 15 goals and bagged 11 assists in a stunning season in Serie A last year.

His manager Jugen Klopp highlighted his speed and dribbling abilities ahead of kick off, saying he was “just a great footballer.” Indeed.


A calm evening in Vicarage Road as Simon Mignolet earns an early free kick. A great atmosphere taking hold as Liverpool assume possession inside their own half, the hosts sitting back and soaking up early pressure.


Wearing 66 Alexander-Arnold lofts a promising high ball towards Roberto Firmino peeling away from his marker behind enemy lines. Gomes is happy to stroll from his line to collect with relative ease. A nice, calm start here.


Here we are now — Watford are not willing to be backed into a corner in these early stages. A dangerous cross almost catches Dejan Lovren and Emre Can unawares, but it is far too deep at the back post. The game’s first attacking opportunity.


Okaka uses incredible strength to shrug off multiple challenges on there halfway line. He puts Pereyra through on goal and, turning Lovren inside and out, has a shot put out for a corner.


Only eight minutes on the clock! Okaka earned the corner and he peels away from Firmino with incredible ease to head a bullet of a header past Simon Mignolet.

Disastrous start for Jurgen Klopp but what a way to kick off the new campaign for Watford — they are swaggering!


Bad boy Holebas with the corner with Okaka peeling away from the presence of both Moreno and Firmino at the front post. It was such a soft goal to concede but how well the striker did to get just enough power and precision behind it to cause Mignolet all sorts of problems.


Klopp is grinding his teeth on the touchline. Not quite sure if that means anything because it almost always looks like he is grinding his teeth, but he does not look happy with a frustrated expression written across his face. Oh how he could use Philippe Coutinho now…


Liverpool looking a little bit aimless at the moment, with the Watford crowd getting on their back. Mane has dropped deep to receive the ball and is desperately trying to get something going. Watford remain strong and disciplined.


Substitution Watford: Kikio Femenía Far replaces Daryl Janmaat.


Liverpool supporters are not impressed with Firmino’s marking for Watford’s opening goal…


Meanwhile former Reds ace John Arne Riise was quick to point out the threat Okaka posed before kick off. The pair were team-mates at Roma.


Liverpool have enjoyed the lion’s share of possession but have yet to get going behind enemy lines in the opening 20 minutes. Mohamed Salah has been very, very lively but is caught offside for a late run on the right wing.


Liverpool captain Jordan Henderson looks on dejected following Okaka’s goal after just eight minutes…

Watford v Liverpool - Premier League - Vicarage Road Source: PA Wire/PA Images


Chance! It’s that man Okaka again. The striker is (eventually) called for offside and rightfully so, but did ask questions of Simon Mignolet who had to come from his line early to make a good save.


What a lovely, lovely goal! Sadio Mane with a stunning run which featured a quick one-two outside the box, before curling the ball elegantly passed Gomes to bring the scores level. That was beautiful football and Mane has the game level.


We’ve seen the best and worst of Liverpool inside the opening 30 minutes.


Disaster for Liverpool as the hosts go up the other end almost straight away and wreak complete havoc. Mignotlet makes an initial save but his defence simply cannot clear before Doucoure taps home from three yards out to make it 2-1. What a game.


Utterly shambolic defending from Liverpool to concede straight after drawing the scores level. Moreno was tussled off the ball by Amrabat to start the move. He found Tom Cleverly who crossed low before Doucoure tapped it home. A question of offside, perhaps.


Bad news for Watford as goalscorer Doucoure has gone down following a clash with Sadio Mane. The Liverpool forward is booked as he appeared to place his studs on the forward’s ankle ever so slightly.


Chance! Mohamed Salah won’t want to see that again. Brilliant link-up play with Firmino following a lightening quick counter attack sees the former Roma man one v one against Gomes.

Taking the ball onto his right boot Salah oddly toe-pokes the ball six yards from goal where it might have been better to bring a shot across his body and into the far corner which was left unguarded.

A very, very close chance to bring us level again but Salah skies it well and truly over the crossbar.


Sadio Mane reels away in celebration for his first goal of the season. But just minutes later his side would be behind again…

Watford v Liverpool - Premier League - Vicarage Road Source: PA Wire/PA Images


Abdoulaye Doucouré sticking the ball past Simon Mignonet to make it 2-1. Five minutes to go until the break here.

Watford v Liverpool - Premier League - Vicarage Road Source: PA Wire/PA Images


With Arsenal’s 4-3 win over Leicester last night and now three goals in this  opening half, is poor defending going to be a common theme of this Premier League season? If nothing else, it’s entertaining.


The hosts are again sitting back as Liverpool get the ball to both wings where Mane and Salah look energetic and motivated to run at defenders and create a chance.

But Klopp’s charges look almost lethargic on the ball and are visibly struggling to break Watford down. Very few chances at goal aside from Mane’s stunning equaliser.


Chance! Mane flicks a header on goal, trying to nudge it into the bottom corner but it bounces narrowly wide of the post as we approach the end of stoppage time.


Liverpool begin the second half playing left to right. There’s no hiding the fact that they have poor in defence, both from set pieces and open play. But they could still get something out of this game if Mane and Saleh see enough of the ball.

Salah missed one sitter and Mane almost brought the scores level with a header which just went narrowly wide. The pair could be the difference between an opening day loss and getting a result this afternoon.


John Green has given himself a pep talk ahead of the second half.


Substitution for Watford: Richarlison replaces Pereyra.


There is a lot of expectation pinned on the promising young forward Richarlison, who Watford paid a £11 million for from Fluminense. He creates an early chance and looks lively early on in his Premier League debut.


A terrible backpass from Amrabat sees Mane through on goal but he can’t do much with it as his cross towards the back post is poor and aimless.


Mohamed Salah is hauled down by Gomes and Firmino has a chance to redeem himself from the spot kick… Here we go then…


Firmino keeps his composure to slot the ball into the bottom right corner, send Gomes the wrong way and draw the scores level. A cool, calm finish and Liverpool now have a platform to take all three points if Watford cannot step the tide of their momentum.


What a remarkable turnaround, Liverpool are ahead 3-2! Roberto Firmino sees Gomes off his line and tries to lob him with an audacious chip. It lands just short but Mohamed Salah is on hand to stroke the ball home no more than two yards out from goal. Liverpool take the lead.


And indeed what a turnaround for Roberto Firmino. He looked like a scapegoat for Watford’s opening goal but has now bagged a goal and an assist in the second half to bring the Reds into the lead.

Let’s be clear, he did not mean that as an assist — he was trying to lob Gomes. But it will go down in the statisticians books as an assist and I’m not sure either the Brazilian or his manager will care as they take the lead for the very first time in this game.


Substitution for Watford: Stefano Okaka is replaced by Andre Gray.


Shot! Alberto Moreno takes the ball down expertly before releasing a stunning outside-of-the-boot volley which almost dipped into the top corner. Gomes, however, did well to claw it away for a corner.


Crossbar! Now that would have been game over. The ball hits the back of Joel Matip from the corner and crashes against the middle of the crossbar, with Liverpool really flexing their muscles at the moment. Watford look spooked.


Andre Gray almost makes an immediate impact at the other end. A quick break sees the former Burnley striker race straight down through the heart of the Liverpool defence. Lovren and Matip are no-where to be seen before Alexander-Arnold bails them both out with a timely interception.


Another save! Gomes does well to get down low to claw away another effort from Dejan Lovren. Liverpool may not defend set pieces well, but they have looked threatening from corners themselves.

That, however, might say more about Watford’s current state of panic than anything else.


Another shot sees Mohamed Salah take the ball take on his chest following a swift crossfield ball from Alberto Moreno. The winger slices it from 20 yards out and it pings over the bar. A fourth goal could be coming.


Oooh that was close! A breakdown in communication between Dejan Lovren and Simon Mignolet sees the Liverpool goalkeeper drop the ball just on the edge of his own box.

Lovren looked to be claiming the cross was his to header away, however the defender ducked at the last second where his goalkeeper came to claim the ball.

That could have been costly.


Mohamed Salah celebrates scoring his first Premier League goal for Liverpool. It’s still 3-2 with just under 15 minutes left on the clock.

Watford v Liverpool - Premier League - Vicarage Road Source: PA Wire/PA Images


A break in play as Younes Kaboul goes down injured for Watford. The club’s medical staff are examining his upper thigh, with Marco Silva having already made his three substitutions.


Substitution for Liverpool: Roberto Firmino is replaced by Divock Origi.


Salah almost grabbed a second there. An expert ball from Emre Can deep inside his own half forces Gomes to stray from his line and boot the ball into Row Z.

Salah looked like taking the ball around the goalkeeper just like he did to earn his side’s penalty, but Gomes has learned his lesson and stayed on his feet this time to clear.


A lot of long balls from Liverpool as Watford commit men forward in search on an equaliser. They could easily grab a fourth against the run of play, but the hosts are not giving up just yet. Five minutes to go.


Substitution for Liverpool: Mohamed Salah is replaced by James Milner


And just before that change Georginio Wijnaldum hit a snapshot which went a handful of yards wide of the post. Watford are enjoying their first spell of possession since going behind again, but are struggling to get Andre Gray and Richarlison on the ball in the final third.


Simon Mignolet is booked for time-wasting as the clock ticks into the 88th minute.


Roberto Firmino slots home what could prove to be a winning penalty… Two minutes and stoppage time to go.

Watford v Liverpool - Premier League - Vicarage Road Source: PA Wire/PA Images


There will be five minutes of injury time to play.


Substitution for Liverpool: Trent Alexander-Arnold is replaced by Joe Gomez


Save! Deep into stoppage time Britos slams a long range effort on goal which Mignolet has to punch clear for a corner.


Incredible! From yet another set piece Watford grab a late, late leveler. Britos is claiming it but there may be a call for offside. From the corner Richardson takes the ball towards the near post before firing a powerful effort which Mignolet cannot keep out. The ball bounces back down onto the line where Britos bundles it home. It’s 3-3!

Vicarage Road erupts and Jurgen Klopp looks sick. What a game this has been. Watford looked to have thrown it away before Liverpool rallied. But from yet another set piece they have completely and utterly collapsed. Unacceptable levels of defending again but you really do have to admire the host’s tenacity to come back from the brink.

About the author:

Aaron Gallagher