Liverpool booked their place in the quarter-finals of the Champions League with a consummate display against RB Leipzig, with a 2-0 win ensuring a 4-0 aggregate result.
Liverpool 2-0 RB Leipzig (4-0 agg)
Champions League Last 16 Second Leg, Puskas Arena
March 10, 2021
Salah 70′ (assist – Jota)
Mane 74′ (assist – Origi)
With key names back and Fabinho in midfield, the Reds began strong in Budapest, though Thiago wasted an early opening in favour of passing to Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane blasted an effort over on the volley.
Gulacsi was required again as Thiago‘s acrobatic pass played Salah through on the break, and with the former Liverpool goalkeeper stopping the No. 11, Mane contrived to head the rebound into the ground.
At the other end, Alisson saved well to deny Kevin Kampl, before Emil Forsberg skewed wide, with Leipzig continuing to threaten as the impressive Nat Phillips and Ozan Kabak were tested at centre-back.
Jota created a chance for himself as the break drew closer, though he was only able to fire a snapshot at Gulacsi, before squandering an open goal following another error from Dayot Upamecano.
HT: Liverpool 0-0 RB Leipzig
- Fabinho starts in midfield for first time since Merseyside derby in October
- Phillips and Kabak impress at centre-back; Thiago runs play from midfield
- Salah opens scoring before Mane puts game to bed with close-range finish
- Liverpool reach Champions League quarter-finals for third time in four years
- Quarter-final and semi-final draws to be held in Nyom on March 19
Julian Nagelsmann made an attacking change at the break as former Crystal Palace striker Alexander Sorloth came on for Kampl, signalling Leipzig’s intent as they pursued the three goals needed.
Liverpool were much more fluent with Fabinho back in midfield and, as a result, Thiago further forward, but the fatigue among Jurgen Klopp‘s squad showed at times, particularly in a number of loose passes from Andy Robertson.
Sorloth hit the bar with a looping header as Leipzig teased a game-changing away goal, only for Liverpool to effectively put the game to bed with a brilliant goal with 20 minutes left to play.
The move began with Salah on the right, and with Thiago, Mane and Jota all involved as the Reds surged forward, the No. 20 played it across to the Egyptian who was on hand to finish.
TIA Man of the Match: Fabinho
Referee: Clement Turpin (FRA)
Subs not used: Adrian, H.Davies, R.Williams, B.Davies, N.Williams, Jones, Shaqiri
RB Leipzig: Gulacsi; Mukiele, Upamecano, Klostermann; Adams, Kampl (Sorloth 46′), Sabitzer, Forsberg (Kluivert 60′); Olmo (Haidara 72′); Poulsen (Sorloth 60′), Nkunku
Subs not used: Martinez, Orban, Konate, Halstenberg, Henrichs, Samardzic
Next match: Wolves (A) – Premier League – Monday, March 15, 8pm (GMT)