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Liverpool Reached Ucl Final. by silasloaded (m): 10:50pm on May 7
Kanu Okoronkwo Silas
Abia State University
Political Science
200Level, Nigeria.
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Liverpool stun Barcelona to
overcome deficit and reach
UCL final
Liverpool produced one of the
greatest comebacks in Champions
League history to beat Barcelona
4-0 on Tuesday, overturning a
three-goal first-leg deficit and
advancing to their second
successive final with a 4-3
aggregate victory.
Two goals each from stand-in
forward Divock Origi and halftime
substitute Georginio Wijnaldum left
Lionel Messi and Barcelona utterly
shell-shocked by a Liverpool
performance full of passion, belief
and determination.
Juergen Klopp's side will play the
winner of Wednesday's other semi-
final between Ajax Amsterdam and
Tottenham Hotspur, with the Dutch
side leading 1-0 from the first-leg
in London.
"Unbelievable. I don't think many
people gave us a chance," said
Liverpool captain Jordan
Henderson.
"Before the game we knew that it
would be difficult but it was still
possible of course. It's amazing. We
knew that at Anfield we could do
something special."
Liverpool become only the third
team in the history of the European
Cup or Champions League to come
from three goals down after the
first leg of a semi-final and
progress after Panathinaikos in
1970-71 and Barcelona themselves
in 1985-86.
For Barca, who went out to on
away goals to AS Roma in the
quarter-finals last year after
winning the first-leg 4-1, it was a
bitter night that will raise many
questions for coach Ernesto
Valverde.
Messi, whose two goals in the first
leg had given his team a seemingly
comfortable advantage, was unable
to make his influence on the game
count with an away goal that
would have been decisive.
Liverpool, without two thirds of
their strike force with Mohamed
Salah and Roberto Firmino injured,
took a seventh-minute lead when a
poor headed clearance from Jordi
Alba fell at the feet of Jordan
Henderson, who burst goalwards.
His low shot was parried out by
Barca keeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen
but straight to Origi who slotted
home.
Barca had openings in the first half
but when Messi twice got space
around the box he fired wide of the
target and when Jordi Alba burst
goalwards just before halftime,
Liverpool keeper Alisson Becker
was out quickly to nullify the
danger.
Yet the game took a remarkable
turn following the introduction of
Liverpool midfielder Georginio
Wijnaldum for the injured left back
Andy Robertson, at the break.
The Dutchman drove home a low
cross from Trent Alexander-Arnold,
which Barca keeper Ter Stegen
should have saved, to make it 2-0
in the 54th minute.
Two minutes later Wijnaldum rose
to meet a Xherdan Shaqiri cross
with a powerful header to make it
3-3 on aggregate.
Liverpool then grabbed an
extraordinary fourth goal with a
quickly-taken corner from
Alexander-Arnold, catching the
Barca defence asleep with a low
ball that was turned in at the near
post by Origi.
That sent Anfield wild but then
Klopp's side suddenly found
themselves needing to switch
mindset and defend a lead as Barca
slipped, belatedly, into their
trademark possession game.
Yet with Virgil Van Dijk and Joel
Matip outstanding in the centre of
defence and Brazilian Fabinho
making some crucial interventions
in midfield, Liverpool held on for
one of their most famous wins.
Klopp's side, who lost to Real
Madrid in last year's final in Kiev,
remain in with a chance of a double
triumph as they head into Sunday's
final round of Premier League
games trailing leaders Manchester
City by just a point.

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