Liverpool suffered a blow in their race for the Premier League top four with a 2-1 home defeat against Crystal Palace on Sunday afternoon.
Philippe Coutinho’s 10th league goal of the season – a stunning free-kick curler midway through the first half – put the Reds ahead, only for Christian Benteke to restore parity on his return to Anfield.
Jürgen Klopp’s side created several chances after the interval but were undone by Benteke again on 74 minutes, the Belgian heading home a low corner across the box to win it for the visitors.
The key points…
- Sublime Coutinho free-kick put Liverpool in front
- Benteke equalised at Kop end late in first half
- Former Reds striker headed home winner for Palace
- Klopp’s team’s seven-match unbeaten run halted
The team news…
Pre-match, Klopp was boosted by the availability of both Lucas Leiva and Joel Matip, meaning the manager could name an unchanged line-up.
There was a notable new name on the bench, though, as Academy striker Rhian Brewster joined the substitutes after a season of outstanding progress with the U18s and U23s.
The first half…
There was a bright, open start under a bright, warm sun at Anfield, though the breakthrough final touch proved elusive at either end in the opening exchanges.
Palace arrived on Merseyside with five wins from their previous seven games – including victories over Chelsea and Arsenal – and with pressure added to their attempt to avoid relegation by Saturday’s results.
And former Reds forward Benteke was worryingly close to putting the Eagles in front with 21 minutes on the clock.
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