Liverpool won 1-0 at home to Bournemouth in the League Cup fourth round on Wednesday, with Nathaniel Clyne‘s goal the difference between the two sides.
Liverpool 1–0 Bournemouth
League Cup – Anfield – Wednesday 28th October 2015
Goals: Clyne (17′)
There were changes galore for Liverpool, as Jurgen Klopp made nine alterations to the side that drew 1-1 with Southampton on Sunday.
Adam Bogdan, Kolo Toure, Dejan Lovren, Joe Allen, Jordon Ibe and Roberto Firmino all came into the team, with Toure captain on the night, but it was three youngsters who dominated the pre-match talk.
Connor Randall made his debut for the Reds at right-back, while Cameron Brannagan and Joao Teixeira also came in to make their first start for the club.
Anfield was in good voice, with the home faithful hoping to witness Klopp’s first win as manager.
Firmino dragged a shot wide within seconds of kick-off, while at the other end, Bogdan brilliantly denied Junior Stanislas with the goal gaping.
After a quiet spell in the game, Firmino’s 15th-minute strike fizzed over the crossbar, and two minutes later Liverpool were ahead.
Firmino’s clever pass found Teixeira, and although the youngster’s delightful back-heeled effort was just kept out, Clyne was there to pounce from close-range. It was his first goal for the Reds.
Toure was replaced by Martin Skrtel 32 minutes into proceedings, with the Ivorian picking up what appeared to be a hamstring injury.
A delightful piece of skill and shot from the impressive Firmino almost saw Liverpool’s lead doubled before the break, but Adam Federici saved the Brazilian’s well-struck shot.
Stanislas and Bogdan were again taking part in their own private battle, with the Hungarian keeping out the midfielder’s free-kick shortly before half-time.
Teixeira shot into the side-netting in first-half stoppage time, and it was Clyne’s goal that separated the two sides at the interval.
There were no changes for either side at the break, as Liverpool looked to seal a place in the League Cup quarter-finals.
Shaun MacDonald’s header just drifted wide a couple of minutes after the restart, while Firmino dragged a shot wide of the Kop goal following an error from Marc Pugh.
Lucas Leiva came on for Brannagan midway through the second-half, bringing an end to a solid first start in a Liverpool shirt from the 19-year-old.
The game went a little flat in the latter stages, although a fierce long-range strike from Lucas stung the palms of Federici with 14 minutes remaining.
Teixeira’s free-kick was kept out by the Australian shortly after, and from the resulting corner, Randall shot comfortably wide.
Bournemouth rarely threatened to equalise in the closing stages, barring a decent Matt Ritchie shot that Bogdan kept out, and as the final whistle blew, a relieved Anfield celebrated Klopp’s maiden victory as Liverpool manager.
Chelsea await next.
Liverpool: Bogdan, Clyne, Toure (Skrtel 33′), Lovren, Randall, Allen, Brannagan (Lucas 65′), Teixeira, Ibe, Firmino (Lallana 86′), Origi.
Subs not used: Fulton, Moreno, Coutinho, Sinclair
Bournemouth: Federici, Smith, Distin, Francis, Daniels, Stanislas (Rantie 82′), Arter (King 70′), MacDonald, Ritchie, Pugh, Kermorgant (Tomlin 70′).
Subs not used: Allsop, Cargill, Cook, O’Kane
Man of the Match: Roberto Firmino
Referee: Michael Jones