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Thursday, April 18, 2024

In a nail-biting battle for the League Cup, Manchester City emerged victorious against Liverpool

On Thursday, the defending champions of the League Cup, Liverpool, were defeated by the current champions of the League Cup, Manchester City, by a score of 3-2. Manchester City took the lead three times before hanging on to go to the quarterfinals.

After Mohamed Salah had tied the game only one minute after Riyad Mahrez had restored City’s lead early in the second half, City’s defender Nathan Ake scored what turned out to be the game-winning goal with a header in the 58th minute.

Erling Haaland put City ahead in the 10th minute at the Etihad Stadium with his 24th goal of the season in all competitions, but Liverpool equalised two minutes later on a goal by Fabio Carvalho off a James Milner assist.

It was another quick and intense encounter between the two rivals that brought the battle for the Premier League championship to a dramatic climax last season, and City, like they did before, came out on top.

At the quarterfinals, they will play their away game in Southampton.

The coach of Liverpool, Juergen Klopp, believed that Haaland’s goal should not have counted and expressed his disappointment that VAR technology is not used until the semi-final stage of the League Cup.

“Referees are used to using VAR, and we have it. Why not take use of this available technology? “the German coach said.

“We worked hard, we accomplished wonderful things. It was not good enough for today, but playing City at their home stadium is always going to be a really challenging matchup.”

Pep Guardiola, the head coach of City, expressed his satisfaction with his team’s performance as they defeated Liverpool for the first time in six meetings across all competitions.

He said that it was impossible to argue that the game was not entertaining. It is tough to maintain possession of the ball while playing against Liverpool because they have a defensive system that is the most challenging I have ever seen in my professional career.

Haaland seemed to have recovered well from the lengthy sabbatical he had to take since Norway did not qualify for the World Cup. He made significant contributions to his team’s build-up play and created a fantastic opportunity for Cole Palmer, but the younger player missed the target with his shot.

When Haaland was given his first clean opportunity, he made quick work of it by extending his left leg and putting Kevin De Bruyne’s cross into the back of the goal. He had no trouble doing so.

The City defence gave up and Liverpool were able to pass their way around their area and score via Carvalho. This brought Liverpool level with City.

Mahrez took possession of a through pass from Rodri with one foot and slammed it low into the net with the other, extending his team’s lead just after the halftime break. The goal was scored by Guardiola’s side, who had seemed more likely to score again.

However, Liverpool responded immediately, as Darwin Nunez made a lung-bursting run down the left flank to grab on to a ball and send it across the face of the goal for Mohamed Salah to tap in. This has been a common occurrence in previous years in the matchup between the two teams.

However, City would not allow themselves to be outdone, and they eventually claimed the lead for good when Ake sprang to great heights to head home an enticing cross from De Bruyne.

Dan O'Brien
Dan O'Brien
I am a journalist for The National Era with an emphasis in sports.
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