Half-time thoughts: It’s very difficult to argue with how Liverpool approached the first half. A quick direct start followed by ten to fifteen minutes pressure gave way to Liverpool largely controlling the space as Brendan Rodgers spoke about before the game. Arsenal may feel aggrieved later to find out that a legitimate goal was incorrectly chalked off, but Liverpool were much better overall. If this is a sign of things of to come, Liverpool fans may feel more optimisitc about the future.
Arsenal needed to react but were part of a quiet opening five minutes of the second half with Liverpool enjoying a bit more possession in a lull in what was an exciting game.
The home side were growing in the first third of the second half, and perhaps Arsène Wenger’s words or changes may have had an effect. Liverpool needed to be alive to any danger from a side desperate to impress after losing the previous home game to West Ham.
On 59 minutes, Alexis hit the post after good work from Olivier Giroud as Arsenal tried to push home the improvement in the second half. Jordon Ibe replaced the tiring Firmino on 63 minutes as the away side needed more energy on the break.
Arsenal were virtually camped in Liverpool’s half as any counter attacking opportunities were cut short from poor decision-making from attackers in space. On 70 minutes, a great run from the heroic Joe Gomez offered Milner a chance on the counter but the former Manchester City man shot straight at Čech.
A first Premier League appearance for Jordon Rossiter was a highlight during a difficult last twenty minutes for Liverpool with some close calls. It must be noted that Brendan Rodgers’ side offered a bit of danger on the counter attack but the use of the ball in space wasn’t as effective as in the first half. The pace of Oxlade-Chamberlain and Walcott was brought on to trouble Liverpool, but the defence remained stout.
Full-time thoughts: Liverpool may just be a different proposition this season. There’s more fight and organisation within the side. A good point and Watford next. Onwards.