It was a high tempo start from both sides, but with Chelsea making several uncharacteristic errors in touches and runs. The defense held up well enough for a while however.
All that decent work was undone with one bad loose touch from Willian, which cut out both midfielders and let Naby Keïta in space to shoot. With no one closing him down, he put his foot through the ball and hammered it off the underside of the bar and into the back of the net.
There was again little Kepa could do about the next goal as well, as Trent Alexander-Arnold produced a perfect free kick after a questionable foul called on a Kovačić slide tackle on Mané. Liverpool then made it three after Chelsea’s latest corner defending foibles — Wijnaldum snapping a rebound home — before Giroud reacted quickly to a rebound at the other end to make it 3-1 just before the half-time whistle.
Chelsea started with great intent in the second half, but it was Liverpool who’d score first: another perfect Alexander-Arnold cross, finding Firmino between two defenders to score his first Premier League goal at Anfield this season.
Lampard rang the changes, switching out all three attackers, and the move paid immediate dividends as Pulisic set up Abraham two minutes later to make it 4-2. Pulisic then took matters into his own hands to make it 4-3 with still a quarter hour to play.
Unfortunately, Chelsea were unable to find a fourth goal, and Liverpool countered a free kick most excellently to make it 5-3 instead.
And that was that.
Our top four fate now comes down to the final day, Sunday.
- Same lineup except in goal as on Sunday, but nowhere near as effective, which is a trend we’ve seen multiple times with the 3-4-3 this season.
- Triple change just before the hour-mark a literal game-changer. The hole dug was too deep.
- Next up: last match of the league season, Wolves at home.
- Chelsea drop to fourth after United’s draw against West Ham earlier today.
- Chelsea need at least a draw on Sunday to guarantee top-four. If we lose to Wolves, we’ll need Leicester City to lose to Manchester United as well.