Liverpool 0-0 Chelsea: Reds fire blanks in lacklustre stalemate

    Liverpool could only fire blanks against Chelsea to remain without a Premier League win in 2023, with the 0-0 draw marking the halfway stage of the season.

    Liverpool 0-0 Chelsea

    Premier League (19) | Anfield
    January 21, 2023


    Jurgen Klopp was expected to make changes but some may have been surprised to find it was only three, with performances in midweek at Wolves rightly rewarded.

    Alisson, Andy Robertson and Mohamed Salah the only inclusions, while 18-year-old Stefan Bajcetic earned his first Premier League start to continue his impressive rise this season.

    Hearts dropped after just three minutes, with Kai Havertz scoring after poor defending from a corner, not for the first time this season – but, thankfully, Chelsea‘s joy was short-lived.

    VAR intervened, offside the call for an early let-off, and Anfield roared its approval.

    LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Saturday, January 21, 2023: Liverpool's Mohamed Salah shoots during the FA Premier League match between Liverpool FC and Chelsea FC at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

    LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Saturday, January 21, 2023: Liverpool's Mohamed Salah shoots during the FA Premier League match between Liverpool FC and Chelsea FC at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

    But the Reds made life hard for themselves by gifting possession to Chelsea having not immediately settled into the match, with the visitors taking confidence in Liverpool’s missteps.

    Cody Gakpo‘s radar was zoned into the stands, snatching at two efforts, but as half-time loomed, Klopp’s side started to ask questions, but a meaningful shot on target continued to elude.

    Half time: Liverpool 0-0 Chelsea

    • 3 changes from Wolves; Bajcetic’s first league start
    • Klopp’s 1,000th game as a manager
    • Liverpool’s fifth league draw of the season

    Ibrahima Konate‘s cross-cum-shot almost caught Kepa out and triggered early pressure from the Reds to start the second half, intent that was lacking in the first 45.

    Shots on target remained in short supply, though, and Klopp called for a reshuffle just after the hour mark with Darwin Nunez replacing Naby Keita – who made his first league start since May.

    LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Saturday, January 21, 2023: Liverpool's Naby Keita during the FA Premier League match between Liverpool FC and Chelsea FC at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

    LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Saturday, January 21, 2023: Liverpool's Naby Keita during the FA Premier League match between Liverpool FC and Chelsea FC at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

    The substitution shifted Harvey Elliott to the right of midfield, Gakpo remained in the central role and Nunez took over on the left wing – but perhaps it ought to have been the other way around.

    Chelsea‘s new £88 million signing Mykhailo Mudryk posed a threat and saw Klopp turn to Trent Alexander-Arnold as ascendancy shifted to the visitors.

    But the match was without a cutting edge from either side, the moments of quality were few and far between, indicative of their respecting standings in the table.

    At the halfway stage of the Premier League season, Liverpool have 29 points, the lowest return since 2015/16.


    TIA Man of the Match: Thiago

    Referee: Michael Oliver

    Liverpool: Alisson; Milner (Alexander-Arnold 72′), Konate, Gomez, Robertson; Bajcetic (Fabinho 82′), Keita (Nunez 62′), Thiago; Elliott (Henderson 82′), Gakpo (Jones 82′), Salah

    Subs not used: Kelleher, Matip, Tsimikas, Oxlade-Chamberlain

    Chelsea: Kepa; Chalobah (Azpilicueta 81′), Thiago Silva, Badiashile, Cucurella; Gallagher, Jorginho; Ziyech, Mount (Chukwuemeka 82′), Hall (Mudryk 55′); Havertz (Aubameyang 82′)

    Subs not used: Bettinelli, Humphreys, Koulibaly, Loftus-Cheek, D. Fofana

    Next Match: Brighton (A) – FA Cup Fourth Round – Saturday, Jan 29, 1.30pm (GMT)

    Source

    Previous articleCarlo Ancelotti dismisses Arsenal approach for Eduardo Camavinga