Liverpool held Arsenal at bay to progress to the fourth round of the FA Cup with a 2-0 win at the Emirates Stadium.
The hosts were again left to rue their profligacy as they fell short in a clash of two Premier League title rivals, squandering a series of chances across the 90 minutes.
Jurgen Klopp’s side struggled to contend with Arsenal’s pressing and vibrancy in forward areas in the first half, but a couple of tactical and position tweaks at half-time paid dividends for the Liverpool boss, with Darwin Nunez and Luis Diaz given greater freedom to run in behind the Arsenal defence.
The visitors twice struck the crossbar before an inswinging Trent Alexander-Arnold free kick was diverted home inadvertently by Arsenal defender Jakub Kiwior ten minutes from time to give Liverpool a late lead.
And with Mikel Arteta sending on forwards and Arsenal throwing bodies forward in pursuit of an equaliser, there was plenty of stoppage-time space for Luis Diaz to seal victory with a fine finsh past Aaron Ramsdale and ensure Liverpool will be in the hat for Monday night’s draw.
ARSENAL VS LIVERPOOL LIVE: LATEST FA CUP UPDATES
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Liverpool cruise through as Arsenal’s season threatens to derail
At a time when Arsenal just can’t seem to score, it is of course one of their own players that inadvertently sends Liverpool through to the fourth round of the FA Cup. Luis Diaz then showed them how to do it with a thumping finish and that without Mohamed Salah.
When it’s going against you, it’s going against you. That might not bother Mikel Arteta too much with this specific 2-0 third-round defeat given this is the one trophy he has already won at the club, but there are now growing greater concerns over whether their season might be derailing. This was a third successive defeat in all competitions.
Their attackers are certainly sending the ball anywhere but the back of the net, on the basis of this. There’s also the issue of whether this will further propel a burgeoning Liverpool side, who could well supersede Arsenal to again become Manchester City’s closest challengers.
FT: Arsenal 0-2 Liverpool
Arsenal will surely feel that is a game they should have won. To create the number of big chances they did and still come away scoreless again evidences their problems in front of goal – there were opportunities of all different kinds during the 90 minutes but Alisson’s goal remained unbreached. Is a high-price centre forward the answer?