Liverpool beat Aston Villa in FA Cup third-round match by 4-1 in Villa Park against the Aston Villa U-23 side to reach the fourth round.
Due to an outbreak of coronavirus in the Villa squad the whole first team had to isolate themselves, reports are saying 14 people in the squad tested positive and 10 of them were players. For this reason, Aston Villa had to play the game with the U-23 team in the FA cup.
One year ago a similar situation occurred where Liverpool had to play with academy players against Aston Villa due to Liverpool’s participation in the Club World Cup and Liverpool lost the match by 5-0 in the EFL Cup quarter-final.
Two goals from Sadio Mane and one each from Mohamed Salah and Georginio Wijnaldum gave a comfortable victory in the end after a nervy finish at the first half.
Aston Villa 1-4 Liverpool Team news:
In the covid affected Aston Villa team, they had to change the first-team squad. Aston Villa went with a completely young side none of their first-team players is involved in this game.
Liverpool chose a pretty strong team against a young Villa side as Sadio Mane, Mohamed Salah, Jordan Henderson, Georginio Wijnaldum and Fabinho all started the game.
Jurgen Klopp went with a pretty strong reserve bench as well. They will have eight days gap before the next match so it was not a surprise that they approached the game like this.
Aston Villa 1-4 Liverpool Post-match analysis:
Liverpool were straightway in business as they took the lead on the 4th-minute mark from a cross from Curtis Jones scored by Mane between two Villa young center-backs.
Liverpool could not find the second in the first half thanks to Villa’s 19-year-old Hungarian goalkeeper Akos Onodo. He made three or four great saves to deny Liverpool.
But against the run of play Villa U-23 team scored the equaliser from a transition. Louie Barry finished the opportunity excellently at the back end of the first half.
Liverpool came into the second half much more clinical and what we expect from them. They scored 3 quick fired goals in just 5 minutes.
From 60-65 minute Wijnaldum, Mane and Salah scored quick goals and finished all fights from the young Villa side.
Aston Villa academy team could not manage a single attempt in the second half but they managed to go level at the interval will give conference to this young side.
Sadio Mane(CF) – (8/10)(Liverpool): Scored two goals and the looping header for the second goal was pretty good.
Akos Onodo(GK) – (7.5/10)(Aston Villa): Made a few crucial saves in the first half and total of eight saves he made but conceded four goals.
Sheridan Shaqiri(RW) – (7.5/10)(Liverpool): Came off the bench and provided two assists for the third and fourth goals.
Aston Villa’s next match is away to Tottenham Hotspur in the Premier League on 13th January.
Liverpool’s next match is against their arch-rival Manchester United in the Premier League fixture at Anfield on 17th January.