By Matt Ramirez – @Matt_J_Ramirez
Liverpool have left themselves with a mountain to climb to qualify into the last 16 of the UEFA Champions League after succumbing to a 2-1 defeat to PSG at Parc Des Princes which sees them drop to third place in Group C.
A flurry of first half goals were enough to put Liverpool away, with the defeat meaning the Reds have lost every away game so far in the competition.
PSG started the stronger of the two sides and despite Alisson’s best efforts found themselves ahead after 13 minutes. Juan Bernat found himself in the Liverpool box and was able to latch onto a loose ball, directing it to the right of the wrong footed Liverpool keeper.
Despite their dominance, PSG could have arguably counted themselves lucky after Midfield-General Marco Verratti found himself in the referee’s book. The Italian clattered dangerously into Joe Gomez and could have very easily have found himself heading for an early shower, but fortunately for him he only saw yellow.
Klopp’s men slowly clawed their way back into the game but found themselves two goals down in the 37th minute thanks to Neymar following a rapid Parisian counter-attack. Kylian Mbappé blitzed past Gomez crossing the ball to Edinson Cavani who had his second point blank effort of the game saved by the diving Alisson.
Unfortunately for the Reds, the Brazilian could only parry out the ball into the direction of his onrushing compatriot who tapped the ball into an empty net.
Thomas Tuchel’s men were cruising into the break but seemingly gave Liverpool a lifeline after Angel dí Maria brought down Sadio Mané for a penalty. Mr Reliable, James Milner, stepped up to the plate and slotted ball to the left of Gianluigi Buffon who was sent the wrong way by the Englishman.
The Reds went into the break having halved the deficit and looking poised to fight back with a French Revolution of their own.
Klopp’s men came out into the second half looking invigorated and in an attacking mind set. The change in tactics saw Liverpool more open in defence however, and calling upon Alisson multiple times within the opening minutes of the half.
The Brazilian was in fine form, keeping the deficit down to one – including another point blank save, this time from Marquinhos.
Despite the added attacking intent, Liverpool were unable to challenge the French defence and Buffon remained untested. It was a far from typical Liverpool performance, however it could easily have been worse for Klopp’s men were it not for Alisson’s performance, who was by far Liverpool’s best performer on the night.
Liverpool host Napoli in two weeks time and will need to defeat the Italian outfit by two goals or more to qualify into the last 16. Reds fans will be hoping for another special European night at Anfield for the final Group C game of the competition.