Liverpool found themselves down 1-0 at halftime to LASK, but just like the last match vs. Wolves, they scored 3 goals in a much brighter second half to beat the home-standing Austrian side 3-1 to open Europa League Group E play.
Liverpool earned a corner in the fifth minute, but the chance was cleared. Ben Doak earned another corner in the 10th minute and LASK returned the favour on the counterattack. Florian Flecker sent home that corner kick to put LASK up 1-0 in the 14th minute.
Kostas Tsimikas put a shot wide in the 22nd minute. Liverpool enjoyed plenty of possession in the final third, but they were still yet to find the equalizer by the half-hour mark. Another Reds' corner in the 34th minute was nearly put home by Darwin Núñez, but the LASK keeper made a nice save, essentially off the line. The final 15 minutes of the half turned physical as four yellow cards were issued during that span, two per side. Liverpool could not find the equalizer and trailed 1-0 at the break.
Liverpool spent most of the first five minutes of the second half in the LASK box, but they could not get a shot off thanks to sharp defending. That pressure paid off in the 55th minute as Luis Diaz was fouled in the box. Núñez buried the resulting penalty to net the equalizer and tie the match at 1-1.
Liverpool made a triple change at the hour mark, but it was LASK who earned a corner. An offside call started a Liverpool counterattack. That attack ended in a Diaz goal after a Ryan Gravenberch cross. As a result, Liverpool led 2-1 in the 65th minute.
Armed with the lead, the Liverpool pressure kept coming. Daiz put a shot high moments later and Núñez had a cross cleared by the LASK defender. Mohamed Salah came on as a sub in the 75th minute. The Egyptian King made an immediate impact with a solid cross and he had a shot blocked. Harvey Elliott put a shot on frame in the 83rd minute, but a save was made.
Salah put the game away in the 88th minute as he took in a pass from Núñez, split two defenders and fired a cross-shot in the opposite corner of the net to seal the 3-1 Liverpool victory.
Klopp Earns 50th Victory in Europe
Jürgen Klopp becomes the first Liverpool manager to reach 50 wins in European competition, passing Rafael Benitez on the list. That record speaks to the consistency of the club since Klopp's arrival in 2015. Not only have Liverpool qualified for Europe under Klopp, but they have also had success in those competitions. Here's hoping Klopp can add to his tally with Liverpool making a long stay in the Europa League.
Elsewhere In Group E
Super Sub Salah
He only saw 15 minutes plus stoppage time on the pitch, but it was clear that Salah was the best player on the field during that time. He has now either scored or assisted in 17 straight matches. It's Salah's third goal of the season across all competitions to go with 5 assists. Salah now has 190 goals in 317 matches played for the Reds.
LFC Globe Verdict
It wasn't easy as the Reds got a proper challenge, but Liverpool followed a familiar formula to victory vs. LASK. Liverpool fell behind early but switched on after halftime to win going away. It would be nice not to have to play from behind for once, but a win is a win and I will take it.
Man Of The Match
While Salah was the best player on the pitch in the final 15 minutes, Darwin Núñez had the most complete game. He narrowly missed a pair of chances in the first half, buried the equalizer from the penalty spot and garnered the assist on Salah's goal that put the game away.
- Florian Flecker 14'
- Darwin Núñez (PK) 56'
- Luis Diaz 63'
- Mohamed Salah 88'
- Ibrahim Mustapha for Elias Havel 68'
- Moussa Kone for Marin Lujubocic 69'
- Ebrima Darboe for Felix Luckeneder 80'
- George Bello for Rene Renner 88'
- Sanoussy Ba for Flouian Flecker 89'