Arsenal with 10 players imposes a draw on Liverpool

Arsenal forced Liverpool to a 1-1 draw on Thursday in the semi-finals of the English League Cup, having played since the 24th minute with 10 players following the dismissal of Swiss midfielder Granit Xhaka.

The first leg was scheduled to take place at the Emirates Stadium in London last Thursday before being postponed due to Coronavirus injuries in Liverpool’s ranks. The winner who will face Chelsea in the final, will be determined next Thursday when the two teams meet back in London, after the Blues were the first to qualify on Wednesday by renewing the victory over Tottenham (2-0 away and 1-0 back).

German coach Jürgen Klopp’s team played the match in the absence of Egyptian star Mohamed Salah and Senegalese Sadio Mane due to duty with their respective teams in the African Cup of Nations in Cameroon, in addition to Ghanaian midfielder Nabi Keita. For the same reasons, Arsenal missed out on Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, who recently suffered with his team from disciplinary reasons, Egyptian Mohamed El Nenny, Ivorian Nicolas Pepe and Ghanaian Thomas Partey.

Goalkeeper Aaron Ramsdale almost caused a goal for his team when Liverpool captain Jordan Henderson cut his ball as he lifted it on the outside of the area before succeeding in catching up. Xhaka was dismissed after Scottish left-back Andrew Robertson lifted a wonderful long ball behind the defenders towards Jota, and when he was trying to tame it with his chest and penetrate into the area, the Swiss lifted his foot trying to disperse it, knocking the Portuguese to the ground (24). Spanish coach Mikel Arteta took out Nketiah and pushed defender Rob Holding. Despite Liverpool’s dominance, Arsenal managed to reduce their pressure and denied them any shot on goal before the second minute of stoppage time. The first shot came between the three blocks in the 72nd minute after arsenal’s Bukayo Saka arrived inside the area and shot it towards the goal but Brazilian goalkeeper Allison Becker came out in time.

Minamino wasted a chance for Liverpool in a strange way, when Ramsdale came out after a cross from Oxlade-Chamberlain and the goal was empty, but the Japanese shot it over the goal (90). Jones had the only shot on goal in the meeting for the Reds, but Ramsdale pushed it away with his fists (90 2).

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