Bournemouth defeated Liverpool with a shock 1-0 victory at the Vitality Stadium this afternoon to climb out of the Premier League relegation zone.
This result saw Liverpool fail to put pressure on Tottenham Hotspur in the top-four race in what was a flat performance from Jurgen Klopp’s side.
Virgil van Dijk came close to giving Liverpool the lead after just six minutes but Jefferson Lerma was on hand to clear the Liverpool captain’s header off the line from Trent Alexander-Arnold’s corner.
Dango Ouattara was presented with a golden opportunity to give Bournemouth the lead a few minutes later.
The 21-year-old winger was one-on-one with Allison after being played through by Dominic Solanke but hit the side netting.
Cody Gakpo found the back of the net in the 13th minute after firing home from Darwin Nunez’ nodded ball across, goal but the linesman correctly flagged for offside.
Moments before Gakpo’s disallowed goal, Neto got down well to deny Andy Robertson after van Dijk picked out the Scottish left-back with a superb floated ball.
With 28 minutes on the clock, Philip Billing steered home Ouattara’s cut-back to give the Cherries a shock lead.
It was excellent wing play by Ouattara who got in behind Liverpool’s defence, showed great pace to get past van Dijk and then calmly picked out Billing for a relatively simple finish.
Van Dijk missed a glorious chance to equalise on 41 minutes but somehow failed to hit the target with a free header from Robertson’s free-kick.
Solanke fired just over the bar a few minutes before the half-time whistle after Marcos Senesi showed tremendous control to juggle the ball at the back post before cutting it back for Bournemouth’s number nine.
Having been subbed on at half-time, Diogo Jota immediately made his presence felt, forcing a good save by Neto to deny his curled effort towards the far post.
Liverpool were awarded a penalty following a VAR check in the 68th minute after Adam Smith blocked Jota’s header on goal with his arm.
Mohamed Salah stepped up for the resulting penalty but got it horribly wrong, powering his spot-kick way wide of the post. The penalty summed up the Egyptian’s afternoon.
Bournemouth carved out a rare second-half opportunity after 83 minutes when Jaidon Anthony went on a good run down the left before finding Ryan Christie inside. The Scotsman tried his luck but Allison made a relatively simple save to deny him.
Liverpool controlled the possession for the remainder of the game but were unable to break down Bournemouth’s resolute defence.
Gakpo was presented with Liverpool’s final opportunity deep into added time but saw his half-volley on the turn fly just over the bar.
Having claimed a fantastic win over Liverpool, Bournemouth were also boosted by the return of David Brooks to their matchday squad after he was out for over 500 days due to Hodgkin’s Lymphoma.
Bournemouth player ratings
Neto (8/10) – Made some great saves and was a calming presence for the Bournemouth backline.
Adam Smith (7/10) – Won the majority of his duels and showed his experience.
Jack Stephens (7/10) – A generally solid defensive performance.
Marcos Senesi (8/10) – A confident and assured defensive display from the Argentine. Also created a good chance for Solanke.
Lloyd Kelly (7/10) – Solid at left-back on his return from injury.
Dango Ouattara (8/10) *MOTM* – A constant threat to Liverpool all afternoon with his pace and directness. Provided a fantastic assist for the goal and tracked back well.
Joe Rothwell (7/10) – Combative and energetic. Contributed well at both ends of the pitch.
Jefferson Lerma (7/10) – Protected Bournemouth’s back four well with his positional discipline.
Jaidon Anthony (7/10) – Showed superb dribbling ability and won several free-kicks to take the pressure off his side.
Philip Billing (8/10) – Scored the decisive goal and caused Liverpool all sorts of problems with his physicality and running power.
Dominic Solanke (7/10) – Was a great outlet for the home side and worked the channels well.
Ryan Christie (7/10)
Ryan Fredericks (6/10)
Lewis Cook (6/10)
Matias Vina (N/A)
Antoine Semenyo (N/A)
Liverpool player ratings
Allison (5/10) – A quiet afternoon for Liverpool’s number one. Could not have done much to prevent the goal.
Trent Alexander-Arnold (5/10) – Shaky defensively and did not contribute much going forward.
Ibrahima Konate (6/10) – Recycled the ball well and was generally solid when called upon.
Virgil van Dijk (5/10) – Got beaten too easily in the build-up to Billing’s goal and missed a massive chance at the end of the first half.
Andy Robertson (6/10) – Got forward well at times and created a couple of chances.
Fabinho (5/10) – Sloppy in possession and generally a poor performance from the Brazilian.
Harvey Elliott (4/10) – Anonymous for the 45 minutes he was on the pitch.
Stefan Bajcetic (6/10) – Decent in possession but struggled to cope with the physicality of Bournemouth’s midfield.
Mohamed Salah (4/10) – Completely ineffective and missed a dreadful penalty.
Cody Gakpo (6/10) – Drifted in and out of the game. Was unlucky with the offside goal.
Darwin Nunez (6/10) – Looked dangerous in flashes but failed to make any real impact.
Diogo Jota (7/10) – Was Liverpool’s biggest threat when he came on.
Jordan Henderson (6/10)
James Milner (6/10)
Roberto Firmino (6/10)
Fabio Carvalho (N/A)
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