After a humbling defeat against Southampton in the FA Cup, Liverpool FC travelled to Old Trafford to face old foes and fellow premier league title challengers Manchester United. A late goal by Zlatan Ibrahimovic meant that both the sides had to share points.
United were the superior side in the first half but it was Liverpool that drew first blood. Referee Michael Oliver pointed to the spot in the 26th minute when Paul Pogba handled the ball inside the United box on a Liverpool corner. James Milner stepped up and calmly put the resulting penalty inside the goal for Liverpool to go 1-0 up. This was the sixth goal for Milner in the premier league this season, all of them coming from penalties.
Liverpool goalkeeper Simon Mignolet came to the rescue of his side on several occasions. He nullified an unexpected Zlatan free-kick hit through the wall apart from saving a Mkhitaryan shot heading towards the goal in the first half. He foiled several other attempts of the United team in the second half until Ibrahimovic scored to level up the score at 1-1.
A series of attempts on the Liverpool goal finally yielded a goal for Manchester United. In the 84th minute, Marouane Fellaini hit the woodwork and the rebound was diverted by Martial towards Zlatan, who headed the ball over the Liverpool defenders into the goal. This goal takes Zlatan’s league tally to 14 goals for the season. He is currently the league’s joint top-scorer alongside Alexis Sanchez and Diego Costa.
Klopp said that he was happy with his team’s performance under the given circumstances. He though added that he was a bit disappointed with the result. This result means that Liverpool climb up one place to third while Manchester United stay at sixth position.
In another match of the day, another major title contenders, Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City were crushed 4-0 by Everton.
Liverpool play Swansea City while Manchester United face Stoke City next in the league on 21st January.