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Liverpool set new unwanted record in Atalanta loss

Liverpool set new unwanted record in Atalanta defeat

November 25, 2020 By Emmanuel K. Budu-Annor
The Reds were unable to deal with the threats of the Serie A outfit and suffered their first loss in the campaign thus far.

Former Champions League holders Liverpool were dealt a surprise defeat in Wednesday's home encounter with Atalanta. The Reds found themselves occupying the wrong side of history with their Italian nemesis running home with a 2-0 victory at Anfield.

Having enjoyed an impressive run amid the club's ill-luck with injuries, Liverpool were handed a reality check by Atalanta in an encounter which could have guaranteed them a spot in the Last 16 stage of the competition. Ahead of kick-off, eyebrows were raised, as Jurgen Klopp handed a number of his fringe players their first start in the campaign.

The decision, however, will turn out to be a bad one and will eventually be capitalized on by Gian Piero Gasperini and his men. Following a relatively drab first half in which Liverpool managed just one shot throughout the game, the visitors finally upped the ante to go ahead through Josip Ilicic in the 60th minute.

Klopp immediately called for reinforcement, introducing Diogo Jota, Fabinho, Andrew Robertson and Roberto Firmino all into the fray with the hope of redeeming the situation. Nevertheless, his plan failed to materialize as Robin Gosens will double his side's advantage minutes after the tactical substitutions.

Liverpool's failure to cut down on the goal deficit in Wednesday's tie meant that for the first-time ever under Jurgen Klopp, the club has lost a competitive match by more than one goal at home. The last time the Merseysiders managed the feat was in August 2015 - against West Ham under Brendan Rodgers.

Relatively, having been unbeaten in their first 15 home Champions League games under Klopp, Liverpool have now lost two of their last three meetings at Anfield. On Wednesday, Atalanta joined Fiorentina as the only two clubs to deny the Reds wins in their backyard.

In the grand scheme of things, the significance of the final result cannot be overemphasized with the top spot in Group D still there for the taking. Liverpool currently sit ahead of the pack with nine points from four outings and are trailed by both Ajax and Atalanta who have both accrued seven points but are separated by goal difference. In order for the Reds to book a spot in the Round of 16, they will be required to defeat Ajax in their next outing.

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