Premier League: Liverpool come back from a goal down to score first home victory. Image Source: IANS News
Liverpool, Aug 19 : Luis Diaz, Mohamed Salah and Diogo Jota scored a goal apiece as Liverpool came from behind to beat AFC Bournemouth 3-1 in their first home game of the new Premier League season at Anfield here on Saturday.
This was also Liverpool’s first win in the 2023 season after they started their campaign with a 1-1 draw with Chelsea in the first round last week.
In other early matches on Saturday, Fulham were thrashed 3-0 by Brentford while Wolverhampton Wolves went down 1-4 to Brighton.
Diaz, Salah and Jota got the goals to overturn Antoine Semenyoâ€™s third-minute opener on an eventful home match in which Alexis Mac Allister received a straight red card for a foul on Ryan Christie just before the hour.
Diazâ€™s second strike in as many matches in the 2023-24 season was added to by Salah, who scored the rebound after Neto had saved his penalty, to ensure the Reds went in 2-1 up at half-time.
And soon after Mac Allisterâ€™s dismissal, following which Japanese star Wataru Endo came off the bench to make his debut for the club, Jota was on hand to give the hosts a two-goal cushion that they preserved thanks to two excellent late saves from Alisson Becker.
JÃ¼rgen Klopp opted for an unchanged starting line-up from last weekendâ€™s draw at Chelsea, with new signing Endo named among Liverpoolâ€™s substitutes alongside the returning Stefan Bajcetic.
However, it was an inauspicious start for the hosts as they missed a chance when Jaidon Anthony had a goal ruled out for offside inside the opening minute. Things turned from bad to worse as Semenyo put Bournemouth ahead soon after.
The visitors regained possession high up the pitch and, although Dominic Solanke was subsequently crowded out by Virgil van Dijk and Andy Robertson, the loose ball fell kindly for Semenyo, who drilled it home.
Roared on by the passionate home crowd, Liverpool could have levelled soon but Virgil Van Dijk’s angled header on Robertsonâ€™s corner came off the crossbar.
Dominik Szoboszlai then dragged an attempt wide before Liverpool levelled the score when Jota set up Diaz with a cut-back off a Trent Alexander-Arnold move, dispatching a volley past custodian Neto.
Eight minutes later, Klopp’s side took the lead when Salah reacted quickly after his spot kick, earned when Szoboszlai was fouled in the area by Joe Rothwell, was saved by Neto and was dispatched into the net on the second attempt.
Neto again pulled off a few saves before the Reds’ momentum was slowed by Mac Allisterâ€™s 58th-minute dismissal, but they regrouped superbly,
Jota came up with a classic poacherâ€™s finish, the forward as he followed the ball to profit when Neto couldn’t hold on to Szoboszlaiâ€™s deflected daisy-cutter from 20 yards.