Alexander-Arnold equaliser sees Liverpool draw at Manchester City

Match reportAlexander-Arnold equaliser sees Liverpool draw at Manchester City

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By Chris Shaw at Etihad Stadium

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Trent Alexander-Arnold’s clinical finish secured Liverpool a point from a 1-1 draw with Manchester City in the Premier League.

The Reds fell behind to Erling Haaland’s low strike midway through an evenly-matched opening 45 minutes at Etihad Stadium on Saturday.

But Alexander-Arnold found the bottom corner superbly with 10 left to play to force a share of the spoils between the sides that started the day first and second in the table.

Team news

Jürgen Klopp made two changes to his XI in Manchester as Curtis Jones and Alexis Mac Allister returned in the middle of the park.

Liverpool: Alisson, Alexander-Arnold, Matip, Van Dijk, Tsimikas, Mac Allister (Endo, 84), Szoboszlai (Gakpo, 73), Jones (Gravenberch, 54), Jota (Diaz, 54), Salah, Nunez (Elliott, 84).

Unused subs: Kelleher, Gomez, Konate, Quansah.

First half

Both sides settled into their rhythm from the off, and it was an individual error that led to the match’s first opening.

Alisson Becker misjudged a pass out from the back and sent the ball to Phil Foden at the edge of the area. The City man moved forward and tried a low strike that was scooped in comfortably by Alisson to make amends.

As the game began to stretch, two quickfire chances fell Darwin Nunez’s way.

First, a snaking run from the back by Joel Matip saw him send a pass out to Mohamed Salah on the flank. His delivery from the right was glanced on by Nunez in the box but gloved away by Ederson.

A minute later, Dominik Szoboszlai capitalised on a pocket of space to thread in Nunez, who was crowded out as he lined up a shot, with Ruben Dias getting a foot in to take the ball away.

Back came City, though, and after a period of pressure the home side broke through on 27 minutes.

Alisson’s kick out in an attempt to launch Salah on the counter-attack was short and cut out by Nathan Ake, whose forward pass freed Haaland to plant a finish across the goalkeeper into the bottom right corner.

Nunez hooked wide from a narrowing angle after Szoboszlai intercepted high up the pitch and fed the No.9, and subsequent attacks at both ends broke down – Foden closest with a low drive that Alisson tipped around the post – to leave it 1-0 at the interval.

Second half

The even nature of the encounter continued beyond the restart, and it was City who carved out the first chance of the second half.

From a breakaway, Jeremy Doku escaped into space through the left channel and pulled the ball back for the arriving Julian Alvarez, who clipped his shot too high.

Klopp sent on Luis Diaz and Ryan Gravenberch in the immediate aftermath, with Diogo Jota one of those replaced having pulled up and received treatment.

Liverpool were now enjoying ascendancy and one tricky Szoboszlai whip into the box had to be deftly touched away by Dias to prevent Nunez from striking.

City then saw handball appeals from a Rodri blast dismissed, before Dias had the ball in the net but was denied by a decision – following a VAR review – that Manuel Akanji had fouled Alisson to force his spill.

Ederson punched out Nunez’s near-post hit from Salah’s lay-up and Haaland was then thwarted at close range at the other end from Doku’s set-up.

When the second goal of the afternoon finally arrived, it was a beauty from Alexander-Arnold.

Patient work from the Reds moved play from left to right and Salah weighted a pass into the No.66 that he controlled with one touch and arrowed into the far corner with another to ensure a compelling clash ended all square, with Haaland flicking a 97th-minute header narrowly wide.

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