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Header by Alisson keeps Liverpool in UCL hunt

Liverpool revived their hopes of finishing in the top four on Sunday by clinching a thrilling 2-1 victory over West Bromwich Albion in the away fixture.

Courtesy a last-minute header by Liverpool keeper Alisson Becker, the Reds bagged three vital points at the Hawthorns.

Albion did well to survive Liverpool in the opening minutes of the game.

Jurgen Klopp’s men did everything they could to penetrate the Baggies’ defence. They were dictating the field, passing accurately and crossing timely but couldn’t hurt the Albion due to poor finishing touches.

The opening goal belonged to the hosts as Hal Robson-Kanu curled the ball past the Liverpool keeper in the 15th minute of the game.

This was Kanu’s first goal in a Premier League start since 2017.

Liverpool’s attack spearhead Mohammad Salah was quick to score the equalizer.

This was the Egyptian star’s 22nd goal of the season, levelling with Tottenham Hotspur captain Harry Kane for the 2021 Golden Boot award.

Sadio Mane could have registered his name on the scorecard instead, but he failed to find the back of the net from close range in less than 10 minutes after Kanu’s goal.

The Liverpool forward had his chance once again in the second half, but the referee ruled his strike off-side.

Trent Alexander-Arnold and Roberto Firmino tried to seal the win from short-range efforts, but either their strikes hit the crossbar or blazed over the goalpost.

Salah had another chance just before the hour mark to get his second goal, but Albion keeper Sam Johnstone got the better of him.

The Baggies fans were elated for a moment when Kyle Bartley went off to celebrate his goal only to find out that the VAR had turned it down because Matt Phillips was caught in front of the Reds’ keeper.

When Liverpool were given a corner as the last action of the nail-biting game, Alisson Becker delivered an inch-perfect header to score Liverpool’s second goal of the night.

He’s the first-ever goalkeeper in Liverpool’s history of 127 years to score a competitive goal.

Moreover, this was the first time in 29 years that a keeper scored the winning goal in a Premier League fixture.

What’s next for Liverpool and Albion?

Albion had nothing to lose in the match.

They languish at the 19th spot in the points table and are well aware of their absence in the next PL season.

The Baggies have bagged only 27 points so far, which has guaranteed their relegation even if they win the remaining two games.

Brighton are at the 17th spot with 38 points under their belt, living dangerously, but just enough to make it to the next season.

Brighton’s tally has made it impossible for Albion to make an 11-point leap in space of two games.

On the other hand, Liverpool are eyeing a spot in the next year’s Champions League by finishing the season on a good note.

They crashed out of the UCL and FA Cup in 2021 and a decent PL finish is now the only way to redemption.

The Reds have jumped to the fifth spot with 63 points in the bag, a point short of fourth-placed Chelsea.

They will next face Burnley on Thursday (20th May) and Crystal Palace on Sunday (23rd May).

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