Norwich 4 Liverpool 5: Three talking points as Roberto Firmino stars
Three talking points as Liverpool edge 5-4 thriller against Norwich City at Carrow Road
Firmino coming to terms with Premier League life
After a slow start to his Liverpool career, Roberto Firmino is starting to adapt to life as Premier League player. The Brazil international had sporadically showed his talent, particularly in victories at Chelsea and Manchester City. With Philippe Coutinho sidelined with a hamstring injury, it was imperative Firmino embraced added responsibility in his compatriot’s absence. His brace against Arsenal suggested that Firmino was ready to become a focal points of Liverpool’s side. Starting ahead of Christian Benteke as the front-man in Jurgen Klopp’s side, Firmino showed his predatory instincts with a low finish past Declan Rudd. The Norwich City goalkeeper should have done better, but Firmino’s movement was, again, brilliant, highlighting why he is occupying Benteke’s spot in Klopp’s XI. His second goal at Carrow Road was even better as he started the move with a deft flick to James Milner before he showed composure to finish past Declan Rudd.
Another set-piece proves Liverpool’s undoing
Brendan Rodgers and Jamie Carragher analysed Liverpool’s defensive problems on Sky Sports’s Monday Night Football. Presumably, the Liverpool players weren’t watching as the Premier League’s worst team at defending corners conceded from another set-piece at Carrow Road. After Mbokani’s ingenious back-hell, the Reds have now conceded eight times from corners this season. Klopp has attempted to address the issue but is making little progress if goals from Mbokani, Wayne Rooney and Olivier Giroud in three of their last four games is any indication. To compound their miserable record, Sebastien Bassong’s late goal was also the result of a set-piece. Although Adam Lallana spared his side’s blushes, it’s back to the training ground for Klopp and his players.
Naismith and Moreno
Steven Naismith moved to Norwich in an £8m deal from Everton earlier this week and the Scotland international was thrown straight into the Canaries side. Rightly so, given the forward’s undoubted pedigree and eye for a goal against the Premier League’s big boys. After a slow start, Naismith drifted past Emre Can, Lucas Leiva and Alberto Moreno to give the home side a 2-1 lead at half-time. Not content to score on his Norwich debut, Naismith won a second-half penalty, too. The assist, though, should go to Moreno. The Spanish defender is brilliant going forward, creating more chances than any other Premier League defender so far this season. But defensively, he is naïve and petulant. The Europa League winner escaped punished for an initial foul on Naismith, before he clipped the striker’s legs with the Scot already on the turf. He was deservedly punished for his sheer stupidity as Wes Hoolahan dispatched Norwich’s third past Simon Mignolet.