The New Year clash between Burnley and Liverpool saw a scrappy affair set alight in the latter stages of the second half as three goals hit the back of the net in the last 30 minutes. Sadio Mane looked to have secured all three points for Liverpool after his stunning strike broke the deadlock in the 61st minute, but Burnley were not prepared to end the game without fightback and their persistence paid off when Jóhann Berg Guðmundsson headed the Clarets level in the 88th minute. However,...
Liverpool secured a victory at the death despite a draw seeming inevitable following Burnley's late equaliser, proving the Reds are starting to develop the resilience and mental toughness which is required to compete at the top of the
Premier League table.
After relinquishing their lead Liverpool could have been forgiven for accepting a solitary point at the home of one of the Premier League's surprise packets this season. However, a roll of the dice in the last minute paved the way for Klavan to steal all three points at the death.
Liverpool secured a victory from a goal behind against
Leicester on Saturday and followed it up with a late winner less than two days later, showing signs of a team who will fight until the final whistle and are capable of beating their opponents even if they are not at their best.
Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain has been on the receiving end of some hefty criticism following his summer move from
Arsenal as he took time to adjust to the demands of Jurgen Klopp's style of play, but the England international is starting to show why he was brought to Anfield.
In a scrappy affair which had both sides struggling for rhythm, Oxlade-Chamberlain proved key for Liverpool in linking the midfield brigade with their attack. The midfielder drove forward at will and his composed nature on the ball offered the Reds a clear direction as they moved forward.
He offered his support in defence and was key in the set-up for both of the Reds' goals, but his ball into the box set up Liverpool's dramatic late winner to cap off what was a strong performance.
The result against Liverpool has left
Burnley without a win in their last five games as their lack of squad rotation looks to have depleted the energy levels of a side who have stormed up the table this season.
Having had to contend with nine games in the last 33 days the Clarets are rightly feeling the effects of the congested festive period. A thin squad has prevented Sean Dyche from injecting much needed fresh legs into his side and it showed against the Reds despite having looked to have stolen a late point from the clash.
Burnley went into the match with just one change from the side that drew with
Huddersfield two days prior whilst Liverpool made seven changes, and the fresh legs and minds of the visitors ultimately proved decisive in the dying stages.
If anyone was starting to doubt Sadio Mane's importance to Liverpool they need only to watch his sensational strike which broke the deadlock at Turf Moor as his first Premier League goal since November was a piece of magic which the game which was crying out for.
Having starred for the Reds last season the 25-year-old has struggled to replicate the form which saw him named as the club's player of the season, but on Saturday he proved he can conjure a moment of brilliance out of thin air.
The winger is crucial to any success Liverpool hope to achieve this season and the Anfield faithful will be hoping his goal sparks a resurgence in form for the weeks and months to come.