Southampton 1-2 Liverpool: Mane inspires win despite Adrian howler

Southampton 1-2 Liverpool: Mane inspires win despite Adrian howler

The Reds secured their second win of the season.

leanneprescott
Leanne Prescott

Goals from Sadio Mane and Roberto Firmino were enough to see Liverpool beat Southampton 2-1, securing their 11th successive Premier League to equal their best-ever winning run in the top-flight. A late blunder from Adrian made it nervier than it otherwise needed to be, but the European Champions showed resolve to ensure the three points were maintained.

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Sloppy first-half scratched out by Mane magic

The game followed a familiar pattern to Wednesday's Super Cup victory over Chelsea; Liverpool were abject in the first-half, showing nervousness as they squandered cheap possession and handed Southampton the impetus, looking weakened by the fact they'd played 120 minutes less than three days earlier.

The home side had several chances to take the lead, including a golden opportunity for Vestergaard to head home from close range before Yoshida's free header was well saved by Adrian. Meanwhile, Klopp's side struggled to muster any kind of attacking threat. 

Then up stepped Sadio Mane.

The former-Saints player has grown to become one of Liverpool's most important players and one of the best in Europe and a scintillating curled effort from the edge of the box dug his side out of danger before half-time. A strike of the highest order, it reinforced the idea that Sadio Mane could be in for another stellar season having matched Mohamed Salah as Golden Boot winner in 2018/19. 

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Second-half improvement undone by frantic end

Liverpool would be much improved in the second-half, passing the ball at a quicker tempo while utilising the midfield triangles that made them such a threat last season. From creating little in the first-half, there was now a real punch to their play; Mohamed Salah missed a one-vs-one against Angust Gunn before Roberto Firmino sliced his side footed shot just wide of the goal.

A lovely move in midfield culminated in Sadio Mane getting space down the flank just after the hour mark, but his teasing cross couldn't be turned home. 

The wheels were starting to turn though, and the Brazilian would soon get his goal, again through Sadio Mane, to notch his first of the season. A much-needed second goal, it gave some stability to Liverpool's lead, reinforcing their dominance. 

However, a late lifeline for Southampton would make the last ten minutes incredibly nervous for Reds fans as Adrian played an awful pass straight into the path of Danny Ings. One ricochet later and the ball was in the back of the net, with Ings getting a chance to make it 2-2 just minutes later.

Liverpool did eventually get over the line, securing another huge three points to make it two wings from two at the start of the season, but Klopp will be wary of needing improvements ahead of next Saturday's clash with Arsenal. 

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