Liverpool 2-2 Spurs - report from Anfield
Sun 04 February 2018, 18:32|Tottenham Hotspur
Heartbreak to salvation for Harry Kane in stoppage time, not to mention a missile from Victor Wanyama that almost broke the back of the net - a rollercoaster of an ending saw us draw 2-2 with Liverpool at Anfield on Sunday.
We were chasing the game for much of the afternoon having gifted the Reds an early head-start, but it was the closing moments that brought the most thrilling of drama.
Substitute Victor Wanyama lashed home to cancel out Mohamed Salah's third-minute opener with 11 minutes left - just reward for a dominant second-half display that often left Liverpool's defenders scrambling to keep up.
And when Kane was tripped by Loris Karius and referee Jon Moss awarded us a penalty, even after extensive consultation with his linesman, the striker looked odds-on to score his 100th Premier League goal and give us a rare win at Anfield.
Karius saved it, though, and, in the first minute of stoppage time, Salah ploughed through to make it 2-1 to the hosts, leaving Kane and co crestfallen.
But you can never write off this team! We kept pushing and after Virgil van Dijk's foul on Erik Lamela was spotted by the assistant referee, we were handed a second spot kick and this time, with 95 minutes on the watch, Kane made no mistake to bring up his century and ensure we took a deserved point. What a game!
Mauricio Pochettino kept faith with the same starting XI that guided us to the midweek home win over Manchester United. Right-back Serge Aurier and home-grown central midfielder Harry Winks both returned to the bench after injury problems.
GOAL: LIVERPOOL 1-0 SPURS - MOHAMED SALAH - 3mins
October's reverse meeting at Wembley saw us break the deadlock inside four minutes, but Liverpool were even quicker off the mark on their own patch with a goal of our own making. Retreating centre-half Davinson Sanchez couldn't quite touch the ball away from Roberto Firmino and with everything bunched up in the centre, 25 yards out, Kieran Trippier got a foot in and Eric Dier's cushioned back-pass turned out to be a perfect through ball for Salah to run onto and convert past Hugo Lloris.
CHANCES: TWO ALEXANDER-ARNOLD CROSSES CAUSE US PROBLEMS - 18-22mins
Both teams were giving the ball away in dangerous areas but after Heung-Min Son was denied by Virgil van Dijk from the right angle, two well-delivered crosses from Liverpool right-back Trent Alexander-Arnold nearly led to goals. First, James Milner latched onto his ball forward on the right side but saw his shot deflect off Sanchez and zip wide with Lloris beaten, then Firmino couldn't connect with a header when well-placed four minutes later.
Above: Christian Eriksen challenged by James Milner.
SAVES: LOW STOPS FROM BOTH GOALKEEPERS - 34-40mins
Lloris scrambled down low to save Van Dijk's downward header from James Milner's free-kick but we were stringing together some nice attacking moves and one involving Son and Christian Eriksen almost paid dividends but for the off-side flag. Karius saved from Eriksen anyway, but the Reds' stopper had to make a smart stop when Mousa Dembele drilled through a crowded box on his weaker right foot after Eriksen's deep free-kick had been repelled.
CHANCE: SON LOSES OUT TO KARIUS - 57mins
We were enjoying our best spell of the game as the hour mark approached and saw a great chance to equalise go begging on 57 minutes. Dele's flick played in Son on the left but, bearing down on goal, the attacker was denied by the advancing Karius, with Dele firing wide on the follow-up.
GOAL: LIVERPOOL 1-1 SPURS - VICTOR WANYAMA - 79mins
We were going forward with wave after wave as the second half continued. Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp made changes but still his charges could do nothing to contain us and, on 79 minutes, Wanyama equalised with a bit more on top for good measure! Ben Davies' cross was palmed out by Karius before it found Kane and after the Liverpool defence left it, Wanyama ran onto the ball and hammered into the top corner - some way to bring up his first goal of the season!
PENALTY SAVED: KANE DENIED BY KARIUS - 87mins
There was a golden chance to score what would likely have been the winner when Kane was tripped by Karius after being sprung in behind the Reds' back line. Referee Moss initially gave the decision but then spent a long while consulting with his linesman, preumably over whether Kane was off-side, before eventually sticking by his decision. As is so often the case when there is a big gap between a penalty being given and actually being taken, Kane couldn't convert more than two minutes after the initial foul, driving the ball straight down the middle with Karius unbudged.
GOAL: LIVERPOOL 2-1 SPURS - MOHAMED SALAH - 90+1mins
Anfield went crazy in the first minute of stoppage time when Liverpool appeared to have nicked a winner. There were appeals for hand-ball as Liverpool attacked but Salah ploughed on regardless, evading several defenders as he cut in from the right before clipping beyond Lloris at his near post.
GOAL: LIVERPOOL 2-2 SPURS - HARRY KANE (PENALTY) - 90+5mins
But there was yet more drama to unfold! We pressed forward and Van Dijk fouled Lamela from behind as he competed for a high ball in the Reds' area. Play initially continued but the assistant referee had spotted the infringement and Moss pulled it back, pointing to the spot. The home fans were furious but Kane was unperturbed as he hammered into the corner deep into added time, rescuing a point with a landmark goal for our home-grown striker.
MAURICIO POCHETTINO SAID
"It was an amazing game and I think we played so well. It was unbelievable in the way we showed such character because when we conceded the second goal it was tough, right at the end of the game, yet we had the belief to keep going until the end."
VICTOR WANYAMA SAID
"I've had a couple of shots when I've come on (in recent matches) and the lads haven't been happy with me and said I should stop shooting. I said 'I will continue shooting and one day, one will end up in the back of the net.' That day was today. I'm really glad."
Liverpool (4-3-3): Karius, Alexander-Arnold, Van Dijk, Lovren, Roberton, Can, Henderson (c, Wijnaldum 64), Milner (Matip 78), Mane (Oxlade-Chamberlain 64), Salah, Firmino. Substitutes (not used): Mignolet, Moreno, Ings, Solanke.
Spurs (4-2-3-1): Lloris (c), Trippier, Sanchez (Lamela 71), Vertonghen, Davies, Dier, Dembele (Wanyama 79), Eriksen, Dele, Son (Llorente 90+2), Kane. Substitutes (not used): Vorm, Aurier, Winks, Sissoko.
Goals: Liverpool - Salah 3, 90+1; Spurs - Wanyama 79, Kane 90+5 (pen).
Yellow cards: Liverpool - Alexander-Arnold 42, Milner 58, Can 90+6; Spurs - Dele 69.
Referee: Jon Moss.
We return to Wembley for back-to-back home games this week. First up is our Emirates FA Cup fourth round replay against Newport County of League Two on Wednesday night (kick-off 7.45pm) before the second north London derby of the season next Saturday lunchtime, kick-off 12.30pm.