Liverpool will face Tottenham in next month’s Champions League final in Madrid following two of the most dramatic matches that we will ever witness.
Spurs booked their place in the final on Wednesday night with a remarkable comeback against Ajax in Amsterdam, with Lucas Moura completing his hat-trick in the dying seconds.
Twenty-four hours earlier, at Anfield, we saw Liverpool overturn a 3-0 first-leg deficit to beat Barcelona.
On one of the most dramatic nights in the Reds’ 126-year history, Liverpool defied the odds thanks to a brace each from Divock Origi and Georginio Wijnaldum.
Lionel Messi and his teammates were left shell-shocked at the full-time whistle. There are even suggestions that Barça head coach Ernesto Valverde could lose his job.
But how were Liverpool able to beat the mighty Barça 4-0 on Tuesday night?
Well, a tactical analysis video from YouTuber Nouman does a pretty decent job of explaining how it happened.
Watch it in full here…
First of all, we see how Liverpool’s high pressing and quick counter-pressing made it a very uncomfortable night for their star-studded opponents from the very first minute.
“The combination of this high press and quick counter-press made things really difficult for Barcelona and that’s where things started to go wrong for Barcelona,” Nouman explains.
We see how Barça goalkeeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen was left with very few options, in terms of picking a pass, as a result of Liverpool’s aggressive tactics.
We also see how their experienced players, such as Gerard Pique and Jordi Alba, were forced into making uncharacteristic mistakes because of the amount of pressure they were under.
Nouman also points out that Liverpool’s high-press carried risks. Trent Alexander-Arnold, for example, was caught out of position on multiple occasions but Barça failed to capitalise – mainly because of Alisson Becker.
Liverpool’s ‘keeper made five saves on the night, denying the Catalan giants a precious away goal.
Inspired by the likes of Sadio Mane, who enjoyed an excellent game despite not getting on the scoresheet, Liverpool continued to pile men into the box, creating one-v-ones in the process.
They also looked to attack from wide areas, putting in a total of 23 crosses and scoring two goals.