Jurgen Klopp bemoaned a sluggish first-half performance from Liverpool against Wolves but praised his side’s resilience as they fought back from a goal down to win for the third time in five games in Premier League.
Wolves dominated the first half and deservedly opened the scoring when Hwang Hee-chan fired wide of the far post after excellent wing play by Pedro Neto.
The Reds went from strength to strength after the break and drew level when Cody Gakpo converted Mohamed Salah’s blazing cross-shot.
Andy Robertson then marked his 200th Premier League appearance by putting the Reds ahead for the first time on 85 minutes, before substitute Harvey Elliott deflected in from Hugo Bueno for an own goal to victory would be sealed in stoppage time.
The win moved Klopp’s side a point clear at the top of the table before 3pm on Saturday.
“It’s like we just met in the parking lot before the game with the organization in the first half,” Klopp told TNT Sports. “The good thing is that it was so bad that we couldn’t play bad in the second half.
“We changed the system and one player and we have a little more natural speed up front. We control the game better.
“We have a good team, there’s no doubt about it. We have a very strong bench now.
The stalwart Reds are back again
Liverpool offered little attacking threat in the opening 45 minutes as their midfield were often overrun, after the break at the back.
Klopp brought on Luis Diaz for the lost Alexis Mac Allister at half-time, before bringing on Elliott and Darwin Nunez 11 minutes after the restart.
The substitutes made an impact as Liverpool changed, with Diaz heading wide from Robertson’s volleyed cross 90 seconds after arriving.
The Colombian was soon involved in the equalizer as some neat interplay on the edge of the box saw the ball eventually reach Salah, whose drilled cross-shot was tapped home by Gakpo.
Nunez came close to putting Liverpool ahead but his shot was well blocked by the combination of goalkeeper Jose Sa and defender Max Kilman.
Wolves are looking at their feet and the visitors are the most likely to score.
They did so with five minutes remaining when Robertson, captaining in the absence of the suspended Virgil van Dijk, ran onto Salah’s searching pass and side-footed home from six yards.
Elliott wrapped up the win late on but had the goal disallowed when his shot was adjudged to have deflected enough off Bueno to fall into the Wolves defender’s own goal.
Net stars but the Wolves ran out of gas
Wolves manager Gary O’Neil has reasons to be optimistic despite a fourth defeat from five games this season, leaving the Black Country side near the foot of the Premier League.
“For us to compete with Liverpool we have to compete above our level. We did that for 45 minutes and then maybe threw the odd punch in the second half,” O’Neil said on BBC Match of the Day .
“It looked like a comfortable win for Liverpool but it wasn’t comfortable for most of the afternoon.”
The home side were excellent in the first half, with midfielders Joao Gomes and Mario Lemina snapping at the heels of Liverpool’s players and feeding debutant Jeanricner Bellegarde and Neto to launch quick counter-attacks. attack.
Neto in particular was excellent and set up the opener when he beat three Liverpool players and jumped into the area, before crossing low for goalscorer Hwang.
Another piece of dazzling wing play saw him nutmeg Joe Gomez and cut in an impressive cross for Matheus Cunha, who misjudged his diving goal at his mercy.
Cunha blamed that miss as Wolves faded in the second half in front of a resurgent Liverpool, who failed to have a shot on target.
Next week’s trip to fellow early struggles Luton looks to be a crucial encounter.
- 1The one
- 22Nelson SemedoBooked in 71mins
- 3Ait-NouriReplaced bywell thenon 65′MINUTE
- 8João Gomes
- 5LaminaReplaced byTraoreon 78′MINUTE
- 11Hwang Hee-chanReplaced byDohertyon 60′MINUTE
- 27BellegardeReplaced byDoyleon 77′MINUTE
- 12Matheus CunhaReplaced byFabio Silvaon 61′MINUTE
- 9Fabio Silva
- 17well then
- 78What?Replaced byKonateon 83′MINUTE
- 10Mac AllisterBooked in 4minsReplaced byDIAZon 45′MINUTE
- 17JonesBooked in 90mins
- 11WrongReplaced byGravenberchon 90+3′MINUTE
- 18steelReplaced byNúñezon 56′MINUTE
- 20whoReplaced byElliotton 56′MINUTEBooked in 90mins
The match ended, Wolverhampton Wanderers 1, Liverpool 3.
Second Half ends, Wolverhampton Wanderers 1, Liverpool 3.
Offside, Wolverhampton Wanderers. Nélson Semedo tried a through ball, but Fábio Silva was caught offside.
Test survived. Luis Díaz (Liverpool) right footed shot from a difficult angle to the left is saved in the center of the goal. Assisted by Ibrahima Konaté.
Take a long time. They are ready to move on.
Replacement, Liverpool. Ryan Gravenberch replaces Mohamed Salah.
The delay in the game is due to an injury Craig Dawson (Wolverhampton Wanderers).
Curtis Jones (Liverpool) is shown the yellow card for excessive celebration.
Harvey Elliott (Liverpool) shown the yellow card for excessive celebration.
Own Goal by Hugo Bueno, Wolverhampton Wanderers. Wolverhampton Wanderers 1, Liverpool 3.
The attempt failed. Harvey Elliott (Liverpool) left footed shot from outside the box misses to the right. Assisted by Mohamed Salah.
The attempt failed. Matt Doherty (Wolverhampton Wanderers) header from the right side of the six yard box misses to the right.
Corner, Liverpool. Considered by Maximilian Kilman.
Goal! Wolverhampton Wanderers 1, Liverpool 2. Andy Robertson (Liverpool) left footed shot from the center of the box to the bottom right corner. Assisted by Mohamed Salah.
Corner, Liverpool. Craig Dawson admits.
Attempt blocked. Luis Díaz (Liverpool) left footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Harvey Elliott.
Attempt blocked. Harvey Elliott (Liverpool) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Luis Díaz.
Take a long time. They are ready to move on.
Replacement, Liverpool. Ibrahima Konaté replaces Jarell Quansah due to injury.
The delay in the game is due to the injury of Jarell Quansah (Liverpool).