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    Norwich City 4-5 Liverpool: Exactly Why We Love The Premier League!

    The early Saturday kick-off took place at Carrow Road with Norwich City seeking their first win against Liverpool since 1994, when The Kop End viewed it's last match as a terrace stand. Klopp's Kop faithful were hoping their early start to make the 250 mile trip would be rewarded with an extension to their 11 match undefeated streak against Norwich, as they went searching for their first victory of 2016.

    The big team news from Carrow Road was that both Ivo Pinto and Steven Naismith made their debuts for the hosts, as Alex Neil fielded an attacking line-up with Nathan Redmond and Wes Hoolahan also selected, as Alex Tettey missed out through illness. Ryan Bennett was dropped despite making the most clearances per game of any Premier League player so far this season, as Russell Martin reverted to centre-back. Jurgen Klopp continued with Roberto Firminho up front instead of Christian Benteke, despite the fact Norwich have conceded more goals from crosses than any other side, whilst Jordan Ibe replaced the unfit Adam Lallana.

    Steven Naismith made an instant impact with a crunching challenge on the Premier League's top tackler so far this season, Lucas, as Norwich set out their intentions to get closer to their opponents than they have in recent matches. The Canaries also enjoyed more possession in the opening stages, but it was Liverpool who created the first chance of the game and made the most of that opportunity, despite having the worst shot to goal ratio in the league. Jordan Ibe kept the ball in play before passing to James Milner who slipped in Roberto Firminho, as Robbie Brady kept him onside, before clipping the ball past Declan Rudd off the inside of the post and into the net, justifying his manager's faith in him. The visitors put together 33 passes in the build up to am excellent opening goal. 

    It took until the 28th minute for Norwich to create their first chance of the game and, just as Liverpool did, they made the most of their opportunity. A scrappy piece of play, with several headers from players of both sides after a Robbie Brady corner, finally landed at the feet of Dieumerci Mbokani who skillfuly backheeled the ball past Simon Mignolet to draw the hosts level. The goal helped the Canaries to settle back into the game and only 12 minutes later Norwich hit the third goal of the match from as many shots on target. Wes Hoolahan neatly passed a ball through Jordan Henderson's legs to debutant Steven Naismith, who glided into the area before firing the ball across Mignolet and into the back of the net. The Scotsman's first goal for Everton was against Liverpool and he would have enjoyed achieving the same feat just 40 minutes into his Norwich career. Alex Neil's new look Norwich could not have asked for a better start as they went into the break with a 2-1 lead, as all three shots on target were converted into excellent goals.

    The situation did not get any better for the visitors at the start of the second half as Alberto Moreno lost his discipline and barged the lively Naismith over to gift Norwich a penalty. Wes Hoolahan stepped up and confidently dinked the ball over Mignolet, as the hosts netted another cheeky goal to extend their advantage to two goals on 54 minutes. Liverpool had to respond quickly and they did just that as Roberto Firminho flicked the ball to the unmarked Jordan Henderson, who half volleyed his effort past Rudd to get the visitors back into the game just two minutes after conceding.

    Adam Lallana replaced the ineffective Jordan Ibe as Liverpool went searching for an equaliser in the final 30 minutes. The former Southampton man made an instant impact as his cross found Firminho, who had an acre of space again just as Henderson did, before the Brazilian fired the visitors level just nine minutes after being two goals behind. Alex Neil looked to freshen up and revitalise his team with Martin Olsson and Matt Jarvis replacing Wes Hoolahan and Nathan Redmond. Yet it could not prevent Norwich keeping their finger on the self-destruct button as captain Russell Martin played a terrible back pass straight to James Milner who had all the time in the World to complete the Liverpool comeback. Big strikers Cameron Jerome and Christian Benteke came on for their respective sides in their last ten minutes, as Declan Rudd finally made the first save of the match from Roberto Firminho. 

    Norwich seemed to have no comeback until the 93rd minute, when the hosts lumped a ball forward that fell to Sebastian Bassong who lashed the ball home from the edge of the box, seemingly to earn a remarkable draw for the hosts. Yet the drama was not over there as Liverpool went down the other end and Adam Lallana fired a volley home from a poor Norwich clearance to steal an incredible 5-4 victory for the visitors. The 250 mile journey will seem a lot quicker for the visiting fans, as an astonishing game finished with nine goals from just ten shots on target.

    Both teams have difficult midweek fixtures, with Norwich hosting Tottenham Hotspur and Liverpool travelling to Leicester City on Tuesday night. Alex Neil and Jurgen Klopp won't have long to rectify their terrible defences against the threats of Harry Kane and Jamie Vardy respectively. Norwich in particular will be concerned that they let a healthy lead slip and have conceded at least three goals in all of their last four matches, but the manner in which they lost this game will provide a huge blow to the morale of the Canaries' dressing room.

    Chris Lincoln's Man of the Match: Roberto Firminho
    There has been a lot of talk over who should be starting up front for Liverpool, but Jurgen Klopp certainly made the right decision as the Brazilian scored two goals from just three shots on target.
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    Item Reviewed: Norwich City 4-5 Liverpool: Exactly Why We Love The Premier League! Rating: 5 Reviewed By: Chris Lincoln
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