Liverpool’s dream of winning a historic treble this season is over after they were knocked out of the FA Cup by Chelsea on Tuesday night.
Jurgen Klopp made several changes for this fixture following Saturday’s shock 3-0 defeat at Watford, with Mohamed Salah and Roberto Firmino named among the substitutes.
But Willian’s first-half effort and a sublime solo goal from Ross Barkley saw Chelsea book their place in the FA Cup quarter-final draw at the Reds’ expense.
Chelsea broke the deadlock in the 13th minute thanks a howler from Adrian.
Willian’s shot from the edge of the box was misjudged by Liverpool’s back-up goalkeeper, whose attempted save was nowhere near good enough.
Fabinho was also partially to blame for the goal. It was the Brazilian midfielder’s mistake which gifted Willian possession on the edge of the box - and his compatriot took full advantage.
Liverpool were left wondering how they hadn’t equalised less than 10 minutes later.
Kepa Arrizabalaga, making his first start for the Blues since January, produced a stunning triple save to keep Chelsea’s one-goal lead intact.
The Spanish ‘keeper then made another save from Sadio Mane shortly afterwards and will surely start against Everton this weekend following this superb individual display.
But even Kepa was overshadowed in the first half by his 18-year-old teammate Billy Gilmour, who bossed the show from midfield.
BBC Sport pundit Alan Shearer described the teenager as “absolutely magnificent” at half-time and viewers were all in complete agreement. He would later pick up the Man of the Match award after impressing in the second half, too. The youngster looks a massive talent.
Chelsea went close to doubling their advantage just after the hour-mark when Mason Mount, on for the injured Mateo Kovacic, struck the crossbar with a free-kick.
But Barkley’s magnificent solo effort made it 2-0 to the home side shortly afterwards.
The midfielder ran from his own half before rifling the ball past Adrian.
Pedro should have made it 3-0 moments later as Liverpool showed signs of capitulating.
Only a save from Adrian prevented the Chelsea forward from increasing the hosts’ lead.
In an attempt to get back into the game, Klopp sent on Firmino and James Milner in place of Divock Origi and Curtis Jones.
Salah also entered the fray in place of Adam Lallana.
But Adrian was called into action again and denied Chelsea a third goal thanks to a brilliant save from Olivier Giroud.
This could - and perhaps should - have been an even bigger win for Chelsea, who will take huge confidence from this result.
As for Liverpool, they’ll be desperate to get back to winning ways against Bournemouth on Saturday ahead of their Champions League second leg against Atletico next Wednesday.
- Kepa's stunning triple save v Liverpool
- Adrian's clanger gifts Willian a goal
- Footage of Ronaldo telling fan to watch Clasico