UCL: Liverpool beat Atletico Madrid 2-0, secure top spot with statement win
Liverpool on Wednesday booked their place in the last-16 of the Champions League with two games to spare after a dominant victory over LaLiga champions Atletico Madrid.
Goals from Diogo Jota and Sadio Mane handed Jurgen Klopp’s side the victory that will guarantee them top spot in Group B with two games still remaining.
Mirror.co.uk reports that Atleti had plenty of the ball in the opening exchanges, but it was the hosts that opened the scoring after just 13 minutes.
Jota was the man to get his name on the scoresheet, but it was all about Trent Alexander-Arnold’s wicked ball. The England international fizzed a cross into the box, leaving Jota with the simple task of nodding his side in front.
Less than ten minutes later Liverpool had doubled their lead when Alexander-Arnold’s ball was turned home by Sadio Mane to send the sell-out crowd into raptures.
It went from bad to worse for the Spanish champions, when shortly before half-time referee Danny Makkelie made the bizarre decision to send off Felipe for violent conduct.
Felipe had tripped Mane, but after ignoring Makkelie’s calls, the Dutchman decided to hand the defender a red card.
Jota and Suarez both had goals disallowed after the break but in truth, the game was over a contest as soon as Atletico were reduced to ten men.
Liverpool spurned chances as the second half went on, but it counted for nought as the Reds earned all three points to ensure they will top the group.
When the draw was made earlier this year, Group B appeared closest to being the dreaded ‘group of death’.
Atletico Madrid are always formidable opponents, whilst AC Milan and RB Leipzig are both serious threats on their day.
So to have wrapped up top spot with two games still to spare is a tremendous achievement.