Harvey Elliott

Photo by PAUL ELLIS/AFP via Getty Images

Liverpool wins 10-goal League Cup instant classic v. Arsenal

3 Comments

Two second-choice sides provided first-choice thrills as Arsenal and Liverpool accounted for 10 goals on Wednesday at Anfield before penalties helped the Reds advance to the quarterfinal draw.

[ MORE: Watch full PL match replays ]

Caoimhín Kelleher stopped Dani Ceballos after both sides made their first three shootout attempts.

Gabriel Martinelli scored twice and Mesut Ozil also starred for the Gunners, as Ainsley Maitland-Niles, Lucas Torreira, and Joe Willock also scored to seal a place in the quarterfinals.

Divock Origi scored twice, while Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and James Milner joined an Arsenal own goal on the board for the hosts.


Three things we learned

1. Klopp, Emery not bothered with the League Cup: Whichever manager lost this match was going to have to answer questions after playing extremely weakened sides for a quarterfinal against a Top Four rival. With all due respect to an insanely entertaining match and all the kids who got a chance to wear the Liverpool and Arsenal shirts at Anfield, Jurgen Klopp wasn’t bothered to give his team a fighting shot and Unai Emery cared just a little bit more. Both managers are right to make that call and hope their depth comes through, of course, but it seems like this was the round to start thinking about hardware: three wins from a final and 90 minutes from a draw that will include a third-tier and a fourth-tier side.

2. But the thrills! The old cliche is that high-scoring games make everyone happy but the coaches, and we’ll certainly be including the goalkeepers in this, too. Caoimhín Kelleher and Emiliano Martinez were hung out to dry on several occasions, including a rare mistake from James Milner that allowed Ainsley Maitland-Niles to make it 4-2. Oxlade-Chamberlain’s feats of strength from distance continued with Liverpool’s third, which gave us seven combined goals with a half-hour remaining on the clock. Origi’s equalizer came moments later and was gorgeous, only to be topped by Willock’s wonderful moment.

3. Martinelli keeps making his case: Kids hungry for a chance to shine led to risky challenges and some pretty nice feats, and 18-year-old Arsenal striker Gabriel Martinelli falls in the latter category. Having now scored seven times in seven senior matches including two braces in this competition, Martinelli is ready to contribute now despite being stuck behind Bukayo Saka, Alexandre Lacazette, Nicolas Pepe, and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang. Quite a good problem for Arsenal as it navigates several different competitions.

 

Man of the Match: Origi — The man just keeps showing up at big moments in big games, whether in the right spot for Jordan Pickford‘s Merseyside Derby error, the UCL Final, or with two big goals late in this one. Monster day.


[ MORE: Premier League stats ] 

Where to start? Maybe we just give the quickest of explanations for the goals.

6th minute: Arsenal’s Shkrodan Mustafi stabs at a cross with one leg, sees his other leg score an own goal.

19th minute: Lucas Torreira deposits a rebound to tie the match after Mesut Ozil sets up Bukayo Saka for a fine shot.

26th minute: Martinelli gets his first by roofing a shot from extremely close range to give Arsenal its first lead.

36th minute: Saka causes a turnover and gets it to Ozil again, who sets up Martinelli for his second.

43rd minute: Having made the giveaway on Martinelli’s second, Harvey Elliott hits the deck after a challenge from Martinelli and James Milner scored from the spot.

54th minute: An uncharacteristic bad pass from Milner puts Kelleher in no man’s land and Maitland-Niles makes it work for a 4-2 lead.

58th minute: “The Ox” has been money from distance, and strokes home for 4-3.

62nd minute: Origi’s goal could’ve easily been the goal of the night (see below), a tidy turn and finish from the top of the box, but…

70th minute: Joe Willock, take a bow.

90’+4: Youngsters Rhian Brewster and Neco Williams do plenty of work to set up Origi, who has more to do when he blasts home to force penalties.

Liverpool youngster Harvey Elliot suspended for Kane post

Getty Images
1 Comment

16-year-old Liverpool winger Harvey Elliott has been suspended for two weeks after posting a derogatory message about Harry Kane on social media.

The youngster only just moved to Liverpool this summer from Fulham after becoming the youngest-ever player to appear in a Premier League match.

The FA ruling sees Elliott banned for 14 days, fined $450, and forced to take a face-to-face educational course on the subject. Liverpool released a statement supporting the decision.

“Harvey’s apology was sincere, immediate and unequivocal,” a Liverpool spokesperson said. “He has acknowledged privately and publicly his actions were wrong. Given his age when this indiscretion was committed — in a private setting and prior to signing for us — we will continue to work with Harvey on an educational basis as relates to his conduct. He has already demonstrated to us a willingness to learn and live up to the values and conduct expected of a Liverpool player.”

Elliott issued an apology after the incident, and Liverpool confirmed that captain Jordan Henderson spoke to the player about his conduct. The FA said it took into consideration Elliott’s age in its decision, but claimed that the player “needs to take responsibility for the fact that there was a risk that it would be [offensive] and that in any event his conduct was unacceptable.”

Elliott has made one appearance for the Liverpool senior squad this season, playing the full 90 minutes of a 2-0 victory over MK Dons in League Cup action. He has been a regular for Liverpool’s U-23 squad, picking up two assists in six matches.

Liverpool’s Klopp thrilled with ‘on fire’ Milner, ‘brilliant boy’ Elliott

BEN STANSALL/AFP/Getty Images
Leave a comment

Like most of his Top Four peers, Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp gave his youngsters the stage on Wednesday in the League Cup.

The kids seized the chance, but it was veteran James Milner who had a goal and an assist in the 2-0 defeat of MK Dons at the Stadium MK.

[ MORE: League Cup full of Wednesday ‘cupsets’ ]

Milner assisted youngster Ki-Jana Hoever‘s 69th minute goal that insured the result, making his 185th appearance for Liverpool a fine one.

Klopp had high praise for his veteran, who is 18 appearances away from matching the number he made for Man City.

The Starting XI included Hoever, Rhian Brewster, Curtis Jones, Caoimhin Kelleher and Harvey Elliott, the latter who holds status as the youngest player to make a Premier League appearance from his 2018/19 season at Fulham.

Klopp used his subs on youngsters Sepp van de Berg (17) and Herbie Kane (20) — we swear that’s his name — and little used Pedro Chirivella. And four other youngsters were unused subs.

Many online joked that Klopp would’ve been happy to lose the match and bow out of the competition. The manager is pretty pleased with the improvement, and hinted that his lineup would look similar in the next round versus Arsenal. From The Liverpool Echo:

“At 16 years old still and he is this kind of footballer. That is really good for us. He is a brilliant boy, he takes the situation really well and wants to learn. He will always be a special player for moments, but you see overall with his defending and movements, it is not easy so that is really good. …  He was a bit unlucky otherwise he would have scored. They are all good, they are all really skilled but that’s why it is important to give them games like this. We will try to continue like this, so we will see.”

Liverpool sign youngest-ever PL debutant from Fulham

Photo by Catherine Ivill/Getty Images
1 Comment

Fulham will spend the 2019-20 season in the EFL Championship after suffering relegation from the Premier League last season, but 16-year-old Harvey Elliott — the youngest-ever debutant in a PL fixture as of last May — won’t be joining them.

[ MORE: Report: Bale to stay at Real Madrid after move to China canceled ]

Elliott signed with Liverpool on Sunday, making the move from London to Merseyside for an undisclosed transfer fee. Barcelona, Real Madrid and RB Leipzig had previously been linked with moves for the teenager earlier this summer.

“To have joined the club that I supported as a boy is a dream come true for me and all of my family and it’s an incredible feeling to now officially be able to call myself a Red,” Elliott wrote in an Instagram post.

[ MORE: Saturday’s transfer rumor roundup | Friday | Thursday ]

Elliott won’t be eligible to sign his first professional contract until his 17th birthday, which isn’t for another 251 days days, on April 4 near the tailend of the upcoming season.