By Rhonda Richards | In Match Reports - Away Games
Liverpool emerged victorious in this thrilling top-of-the-Premier League clash, a 3-2 win putting them in pole position as the race for the title reaches its climax, despite a valiant second half fight-back from Manuel Pellegrini’s men.
City went into the game knowing that the title was theirs if they won their remaining games, and even a draw at Anfield would have been sufficient to keep their charge on track. However, Liverpool marched into a two goal lead courtesy of Raheem Sterling and Martin Skrtel, and despite the comeback Philippe Coutinho’s snap-shot handed Brenan Rodgers’ men the three points.
The hosts raced out of the blocks, powered by a noisy home crowd, and it was Sterling who grabbed the opener. He made his way into the penalty area before turning Vincent Kompany and Joe Hart before slotting into an open net to make it 1-0.
Daniel Sturridge was then just inches away from guiding a superb cross from the goal-scorer into the back of the net, before Yaya Toure was forced off with an injury.
City were at odds in defence and Steven Gerrard saw a header from an unmarked position saved superbly at point black range by Hart, though he was helpless to stop Skrtel’s glancing header moments later as the defender made it 2-0.
Fernandinho went close with a shot before half-time, but at the interval it was Liverpool in a commanding position and feeling they could, and perhaps should, have been more than two ahead.
Whatever was said at the interval, complimented by the introduction of James Milner just after the break, saw City rejuvenated, and they pulled a goal back through David Silva. Milner it was that was the provider, picking the Spaniard out with a cross that he turned home to make it 2-1.
Edin Dzeko was a toe-width away from equalising before Silva was instrumental in the visitor’s second, shooting on sight from the left-side of Liverpool’s goal and Glen Johnson deflecting into his own goal.
Dzeko saw another effort saved well by Simon Mignolet as Liverpool began to rock, whilst Silva had a further effort that just evaded the target minutes after.
However, Rodgers’ men managed to regain their composure and once again edged in front, Coutinho capitalizing on Kompany’s sliced clearance to shoot first time beyond Hart to make it 3-2 and have the Reds’ fans dreaming once again.
As the game reached its finale Jordan Henderson was given a straight red after scything through Samir Nasri, but the home side held on to put clear distance between first and second in the table and go one game closer to the league title.
Liverpool: Mignolet, Johnson, Flanagan, Sakho, Skrtel, Gerrard, Henderson, Coutinho, Sterling, Suarez, Sturridge. Subs: Jones, Toure, Agger, Aspas, Moses, Allen, Lucas
Manchester City: Hart, Zabaleta, Kompany, Demichelis, Clichy, Toure, Fernandinho, Navas, Nasri, Silva, Dzeko. Subs: Pantilimon, Lescott, Milner, Negredo, Kolarov, Garcia, Aguero