UCL: PIOTR ZIELÍÑSKI BRACE HELPS NAPOLI DEFEAT CLUELESS LIVERPOOL SIDE BY A 4-1 VICTORY
Liverpool were beaten 4-1 by Napoli on a night to forget for Joe Gomez, Virgil van Dijk and Co., their Champions League campaign beginning in the worst possible fashion, as they were embarrassed in their opening Group A match – their worst European defeat since 1966.
Jurgen Klopp’s side were blown away by a first-half blitz from the Italians, who scored three times in the opening 45 minutes through Piotr Zielinski, Andre-Frank Zambo Anguissa and Giovanni Simeone, and still found time to miss a penalty through Victor Osimhen.
The Reds were shell-shocked, and things didn’t get any better after half-time as within two minutes of the restart Zielinski made it 4-0, following up after Alisson had saved his initial effort.
Luis Diaz pulled a goal back almost immediately with a fine 20-yard strike, but it was the only positive on a night which laid bare all of the problems which have been gathering at Klopp’s door in the early stages of the season.
No wonder the Napoli boss was all smiles as he greeted Jurgen Klopp ahead of kick-off. Maybe he knew what was about to come?
Klopp was effusive in his praise for Spalletti at the pre-match press conference on Tuesday, and clearly respects the Italian’s coaching skills. He’ll respect them even more after Napoli put Liverpool to the sword in a way few sides have in recent years.
The Serie A side were brilliant, sharp and clever with their movement, exposing Liverpool’s terrifyingly-high defensive line repeatedly, and playing their way through midfield with composure, belief and bags of quality.
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Whether it was Victor Osimhen, who was excellent outside of his penalty miss, or the brilliant trio of Piotr Zielinski, Khvicha Kvaratskhelia and Andre-Frank Zambo Anguissa, Napoli had all the game’s outstanding performers.
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