Liverpool beat Barcelona last night to progress to the Champions League final.
One of the greatest comebacks in football history happened last night when Liverpool beat Barcelona 4-0 at Anfield, making it 4-3 on aggregate after last weeks 3-0 loss to the Catalan giants.
Half-time substitute Georginio Wijnaldum was the hero, scoring two goals in a two minute period in the second half, after Divock Origi’s seventh-minute goal. The forward who was only playing because of injuries to Mo Salah and Roberto Firmino, then scored the fourth in the 79th minute when Trent Alexander Arnold played a cheeky corner which caught out the sleeping Barcelona defence.
The final 10 minutes were a frenzy of possession and attacking football by Barcelona, with groans from the crowd on both sides, who could barely believe, let alone watch what was happening on the pitch. But, ultimately Barcelona drew a blank, unable to play past the brilliance and sheer determination of these Liverpool players.
And, in the end Liverpool took the sting out of the final five minutes of injury time, holding on to the ball and attacking through Fabinho who, even in the 93rd minute, had the energy and will to dispossess a Barcelona player before trying to run through the remaining Barcelona defenders, winning a free-kick and putting the nightmare of a last-minute winner for Barcelona to bed.
When the final whistle went, Barcelona looked dejected, Lionel Messi left shaking his head, while Luis Suarez made a quick exit after the ex-Liverpool hero was hissed at by the Kop all evening.
The Kop went crazy. The bench came running on to the pitch, followed by the manager who took Sadio Mane in his arms and swung him around. Players huddled together, singing ‘You’ll never walk alone,’ in front of the home fans looking as if they were living in a dream.
The incredible win was an incredible effort of will from a team on the cusp of something special both in Europe and the Premier League. Who else could dream of beating Barcelona 4-0 or matching Man City all the way in the Premier League?
They will face either Tottenham or Ajax in the Champions League final on the 1st June. Both mouth-watering propositions, with the first all English final since the 2007-08 season potentially the easier game rather than having to tackle the fearless youth of a breakthrough Ajax side.
Come the end of the season, Liverpool could win both the Premier League and Champions League, a Double of such magnitude that the world would have to sit up and take notice of the giant club finally revived nearly 30 years since their last league triumph.
Who could discount the idea they will dominate European football for the next decade with Jurgen Klopp at the helm? This could be the start of something very special.
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