English Premiership

Reds add to Swansea's woes

James Milner (Official Liverpool Twitter)
James Milner (Official Liverpool Twitter)

Cape Town - A commanding second half performance saw Liverpool record a 2-1 victory over struggling Swansea City at the Liberty Stadium on Saturday.

Liverpool were widely expected to dominate proceedings from the first whistle against a struggling Swansea City outfit. However, it became clear in the early minutes at the Liberty Stadium that the Swans would be no pushovers.

With a high press employed on Liverpool's defence, the Reds struggled to get out of their own half and created very few clear scoring chances. It was the industrious Wayne Routledge who created Swansea's first opportunity in the seventh minute - his cross from the right found Borja Baston in the box but he headed over when he perhaps should have scored.

Nonetheless, it wouldn't be long before the hosts would take a deserved lead. Baston was causing all kinds of problems with his running into the left and right channels and the Spanish striker earned the corner which led to the first goal.

Gylfi Sigurosson's delivery from the set-piece found Baston's head at the far post and it was from his knock down that Leroy Fer tapped in from close range in the eighth minute.

Swansea's aggresive pressing led to another turnover in the 13th minute from which Fer blazed a powerful shot over the bar from outside the box.

The Welsh team were largely in control for most of the first half and it was only in the 39th minute when the visitors nearly had an opening to score. A through ball broke to Sadio Mane inside the box but his strike was brilliantly blocked by defender, Jordi Amat.

A late Sigurosson free kick gave goalkeeper Loris Karius something to think about but he managed to gather the strike after initially showing some nervy handling. Guidolin's team went into the break with a deserved advantage, however, in the second period the Reds came to life.

After a period of sustained pressure on the Swans goal, Liverpool found an equaliser in the 53rd minute. A blocked Philippe Coutinho free kick dropped to Henderson and his cross found a free Firmino who headed home with ease past Lukasz Fabianski.

The pressure was raining down on the Swansea goal and in the 57th minute, Coutinho really should have given the away side the lead. After playing a neat one-two with Georginio Wijnaldum, the Brazilian curled his shot wide from the edge of the box with Fabianski beaten.

Waves of Liverpool attacks were coming at the Swansea defence and James Milner nearly teed up Mane in the 68th minute after good work down the left hand side. However, Kyle Naughton was brave and managed to get his body in the way of the effort.

Yet, it seemed just a matter of time before the Reds would make their dominance count. In the 82nd minute Angel Rangel clumsily brought down Firmino in the box and Milner was able to find the winning goal from the penalty spot.

Defender Mike van der Hoorn had a great chance to equalise in injury time but he scuffed his late effort wide as Liverpool took the three points back to Merseyside.

Thu 02 Jul 20 19:00 PM (SAST)
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