Liverpool 1-2 Crystal Palace: Benteke the difference with a goal in each half


Crystal Palace arrived at Anfield with their £30M purchase from Liverpool, Christian Benteke in fine form - whilst an injury ravaged reds side had two 17 year old strikers on the bench

Liverpool selected an unchanged side from the one that won last weekend at West Brom but 17 year old Rhian Brewster was named on his first LFC bench after Daniel Sturridge had to cry off with yet another injury concern - officially recorded as a 'hip problem'.

With Sadio Mane, Adam Lallana and Jordan Henderson remaining out of action for the reds there was a lot placed on the first eleven to do the job themselves and for large parts of the first half the reds looked comfortable.

Palace have mounted an impressive turn around in recent months and are now one of the in form teams of the Premier League with a host of impressive results in recent months.  Liverpool too have enjoyed an improved period of form of late as they look to try and finish in one of the top four league positions.

The magic of Philippe Coutinho unlocked the potential points for the reds midway through the first half.

After being felled for a free-kick he curled it up and over the heads of Benteke and co in the wall and into the far left corner. 1-0.

The reds however pushed the self destruct button just before half time, when Lovren let Cabaye skip past him and cross over for Benteke to smash in an equaliser.

The second half saw Benteke put Palace ahead.  As Liverpool had probed the impressive Palace defence, the counter-attacking side from London soaked up the pressure before Benteke scored his second.

After that, there was little else for a fading reds side to do.  Alexander Arnold came on, Moreno came on and even the lesser spotted Marko Grujic came on.  Sadly, not the kind of matchwinners a top four challenging team should be looking towards.

The result was not a huge surprise and it doesn't necessarily serve a body blow for Liverpool's Champions League hopes, but the reds will have much building to do this summer.  Last summer saw a massive outflux of players from the reds and a mini injury crisis has sent the reds reeling at a pivotal part of the season.

Sam Allardyce celebrates his first win at Anfield too as manager.

The reds next play on May Day at 8pm - when they may well find themselves sitting outside the top four prior to kick off.

Work to do in the final four games.

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