Liverpool wins 2019 UEFA Champions League Final

A soccer ball
Image from Pixabay.

Liverpool avenged their UEFA Champions League Final loss last year to Real Madrid with a 2-0 shutout victory over Tottenham Hotspur at the Estadio Wando Metropolitano in Madrid, Spain.  Liverpool has won their fifth European title with their last Champions League win being in 2005.

Right from the Gate

Being fueled by last season’s loss, Liverpool started this match quickly.  Right after the opening whistle, Liverpool made a few passes that had Tottenham’s defense reeling in the opening minute.  A crossing pass was made in the penalty area that Tottenham midfielder Moussa Sissoko was attempting to block.  Unfortunately, he stopped the ball’s progression with an outstretched arm to give Liverpool a penalty.

Mo Salah strikes again

Tottenham fans were livid in the stands.  However, a penalty is a penalty no matter when the penalty occurs in the match.  The penalty was blatant because Sissoko’s arm was stretched outward away from his body and the arm stopped a pass which more than likely would have given Liverpool a goal anyway.  Liverpool striker Mohamed Salah was able to kick the ball with power past Hotspur goalkeeper Hugo Lloris in the right side of the net to give Liverpool the 1-0 lead.  The goal gave Salah some redemption as he was knocked out of the final last season with an injury during the match.

It’s a bird!  It’s a plane!  It’s a streaker!

With the goal lead, Liverpool decided to play more defensively as Tottenham kept possession more in the first half.  Tottenham would move the ball down the pitch, but they were not able to create passes that would have led to scoring opportunites.  After that goal in the opening minutes, the only exciting moment was when a woman ran out on to the field.  She was captured by security.

Liverpool super sub sinks Tottenham

In the second half, Tottenham tried to create more scoring opportunities by bringing in more offensive-minded players, including hero Lucas Moura, who scored 3 goals against Ajax to put them into the final.  However, Moura nor any of the other Tottenham players were able to find the net against Liverpool.

In contrast, the substitutions made by Liverpool coach Jurgen Klopp worked in this match.  He substituted in forward Divock Origi for Roberto Firmino in the 58th minute.  Origi scored the winning goal against Barcelona to put Liverpool in the final.  Later, in the 87th minute, Origi received a pass from defender Joel Matip after a deflected corner kick.  Origi then kicked the ball at a tight angle from left to right that put the game out of reach at 2-0.

Tottenham played with a 4-2-3-1 formation with four strikers while Liverpool employed a 4-3-3 formation.  Here are the starting lineups from the match.

Tottenham Hotspur – Goalkeeper:  Lloris.  Defenders:  Vertonghen, Alderweireld, Trippier, Rose.  Midfielders:  Sissoko, Winks.  Strikers:  Alli, Eriksen, Son, Kane.

Liverpool – Goalkeeper:  Alisson.  Defenders:  Robertson, Alexander-Arnold, Van Dijk, Matip.  Midfielders:  Fabinho, Henderson, Wijnaldum.  Strikers:  Salah, Mane, Firmino.