A deflected Jordan Henderson effort and a Sadio Mane strike helped Liverpool to a dominant 2-0 victory over Villarreal within the Champions League semifinal first leg at Anfield on Wednesday.
The Spanish facet have been resolute within the first half however got here unstuck within the second as Henderson’s deflected cross soared over goalkeeper Geronimo Rulli — later dominated a Pervis Estupinan personal objective — earlier than Mane poked dwelling shortly after.
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Villarreal have loved a outstanding run within the knockout levels of this 12 months’s competitors — they surprised giants Juventus and Bayern Munich within the earlier two rounds — however Jurgen Klopp’s group have been not often troubled as they dispatched the Spanish facet to take a significant step towards the ultimate.
Liverpool, who gained the competitors, in 2019, try to achieve their third Champions League remaining in 5 years.
Mane loved the most effective probability in an uneventful first half performed principally in Villarreal’s half. The 30-year-old ahead darted into the penalty space as Mohamed Salah delivered a floated cross towards the six-yard field, however Mane couldn’t discover the appropriate contact to information a header in direction of objective.
Liverpool thought that they had damaged the impasse on 50 minutes when Fabinho put the ball at the back of the web, however defender Virgil van Dijk was dominated to be offside when he headed to arrange the midfielder.
Klopp’s facet remained in management and have been dutifully rewarded as Henderson created the breakthrough on 53 minutes. The midfielder struck what seemed to be a cross from close to the appropriate nook flag, seeing it take a lucky deflection off Estupinan earlier than looping into the again of the web.
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Mane doubled the lead simply two minutes later with a prodded end after Salah rolled the ball into his path contained in the field.
Villarreal didn’t handle a single shot on course as they struggled to make their mark.
The 2 sides will meet once more within the return leg on the Estadio de la Ceramica on Might 3.