Manchester City 4-0 Liverpool: Jurgen Klopp’s champions embarrassed at Etihad Stadium

  • Rob Swan

Liverpool were thrashed 4-0 by Manchester City in their first game as Premier League champions on Thursday night.

The Reds found themselves three goals down at half-time after Kevin De Bruyne, Raheem Sterling and Phil Foden all scored past Alisson.

It was a similar story in the second half. City were utterly dominant, with De Bruyne pulling all the strings in midfield. An Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain own goal made it 4-0 to the hosts with just over 20 minutes remaining.

Of course, it would almost certainly have been a very different performance from Liverpool if they were still fighting for the title.

Having wrapped up their first league title for 30 years seven days earlier, Liverpool allowed complacency to seep in and City duly capitalised with an impressive team display.

Pep Guardiola and City’s players paid tribute to the newly-crowned champions with a traditional guard of honour prior to kick-off.

Fireworks could then be heard outside the Etihad Stadium for several minutes, prompting City to post this tongue-in-cheek tweet…

The game’s first big chance fell to Mohamed Salah, who came close to putting Liverpool 1-0 up in the 20th minute.

The Egyptian, who will still be determined to finish the campaign with yet another Premier League Golden Boot, saw his left-footed strike come back off the post.

Minutes later, at the opposite end of the pitch, the hosts were awarded a penalty when Gomez fouled Sterling inside the box.


The two opponents clashed in the reverse fixture back in November and continued their spat while on international duty with England a day later.

Sterling was axed for England’s Euro 2020 qualifier against Montenegro after attempting to grab Gomez by the neck before the two of them made the peace.

But Sterling was clearly fired up against his former employers on Thursday night and won the penalty which led to De Bruyne putting City ahead in the 25th minute.

The Belgian, who is in fabulous form, left Alisson with no chance by confidently dispatching the ball into the bottom corner.

Sterling then got the better of Gomez again 10 minutes later and, on his ninth appearance versus the Reds, finally scored his first Premier League goal against them.

Phil Foden, who provided the assist for Sterling’s goal, then added another City goal on the stroke of half-time to leave the visitors shell-shocked.

Gary Neville, on co-commentary for Sky Sports, said Andy Robertson was "playing tonight like he has had a week on the lash".

That’s now four goals in three appearances for the hugely-talented 20-year-old.

Klopp reacted at half-time by withdrawing Gomez and sending on Oxlade-Chamberlain, with Fabinho dropping to centre-back.

But City continued to dominate and could have scored two more goals shortly after the restart.

Foden was denied a second goal when Virgil van Dijk cleared his shot off the line in the 50th minute.

But last season’s Premier League champions registered their fourth goal of the night in the 66th minute when Sterling’s attempted shot was turned into his own net by Oxlade-Chamberlain.

Many football fans were wondering if Liverpool's players were still drunk after their title celebrations..

For Liverpool's well-beaten players, the full-time whistle couldn't come soon enough.

This defeat won't take the shine off what has been a truly remarkable season, but it will still hurt Klopp and his players.

Pride was up for grabs tonight, and City made sure they gave their fans something to smile about.

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