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Liverpool 3-0 Manchester City:Jurgen Klopp's side take control of Champions League quarter-final with emphatic win

Mohamed Salah fired Liverpool ahead from close range in the 12th minute after a mistake from Manchester City's Kyle Walker
LIVERPOOL ripped apart Manchester City, scoring three goals inside the opening 31 minutes, as they won their Champions League quarter-final, first leg tie at Anfield.

  • Liverpool scored three first-half goals to power past Manchester City in quarter-final first-leg at Anfield 
  • Mohamed Salah fired Liverpool in front with a close range finish after Roberto Firmino's shot was blocked
  • Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain doubled the hosts' advantage with a stunning long-range strike after 20 minutes
  • Sadio Mane made it three inside the opening half-an-hour, heading home a pinpoint cross from Salah

Jurgen Klopp's side grabbed the lead in the 12th minute when Mohamed Salah played the ball inside to Roberto Firmino whose shot was blocked by City keeper Ederson. Firmino pounced on the loose ball and slipped it to Salah who fired home.
Salah slides to his knees as Roberto Firmino and Andy Robertson join him in celebrating his opening strike in the tie

Liverpool were rampant and harrying City off the ball in midfield when James Milner won back possession and moved it straight to Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, who unleashed an unstoppable drive from 25 metres to make it 2-0 in the 20th minute.

City were reeling and looked nothing like the team that has marched so convincingly to a 16-point lead in the Premier League and it was not long before the five times European champions made it 3-0.

Salah floated a teasing cross from the right towards Sadio Mane, who rose above the City defence to power a header past Ederson and send the Anfield crowd into delirium.
Fernandinho, Vincent Kompany and David Silva troop back to the halfway line after Manchester City fell 3-0 behind
City regained their composure after the break, helped by Salah going off injured in the 52nd minute, but they now have a mammoth task to the turn the tie round in next Tuesday's second leg at the Etihad.

We expected goals, and got them, but we expected them shared between two teams standing toe to toe, and instead all went one way. Liverpool were magnificent, delivering arguably the performance of the season, by any English club.

Clinical on occasions, but mighty in their defensive resilience, too. Loris Karius did not have a shot to save against a group of players that have been relentless in their attacking ambition this season.

Liverpool’s midfield were the stars. James Milner, Jordan Henderson, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain — as names on a team-sheet they appeared dwarfed by City’s stellar equivalent, yet this was their night. They protected the defensive line, they hassled City’s creators to the point of madness. Guardiola’s side looked lost in a way they have not all season — even here in January, losing 4-3.

This was, as the scoreline suggests, an improvement. A complete, emphatic triumph of will and spirit, backed by ferocious noise that only Anfield on European nights conjures. This was a marker thrown down for this season, and the next, too – a result that says Liverpool are the real deal.

They have the beating of the best team in the land, so next year might be interesting, and if they can do this to City now, might they also be able to do it to Barcelona, Bayern Munich or Real Madrid, this season too?

Liverpool might not be the champions of Spain, as Barcelona surely will be, or of Germany like Bayern Munich, or champions of Europe like Madrid; but they have heart and an appetite for European occasions that is close to unmatched in English football.

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