By Jamie Strickland
BBC Sport
11 Dec From the sectionFootball 101
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Dimitri Payet scored direct from a free-kick in the Premier League for the third time
Dimitri Payet scored direct from a free-kick in the Premier League for the third time
Goals by Dimitri Payet and Michail Antonio exposed Liverpool’s defensive frailties again as West Ham climbed out of the Premier League relegation zone with a hard-fought draw at Anfield.

After conceding four in last weekend’s loss at Bournemouth, Liverpool shipped two avoidable first-half goals on their way to ceding more ground to Chelsea and Arsenal in the title race.

Adam Lallana’s smart low finish had put Liverpool ahead inside five minutes but the visitors were level before the half-hour when goalkeeper Loris Karius – at fault for Bournemouth’s winner a week ago – failed to deal with Payet’s saveable 25-yard free-kick.


Karius was less culpable for West Ham’s second scored by Antonio, but it was a scruffy goal that did not reflect well on a Liverpool backline that has now conceded 20 goals in 15 league games – the worst record among the teams in the top six.

But errors were not the sole preserve of the Liverpool defence, and a big mistake by West Ham goalkeeper Darren Randolph, dropping a cross into the path of Divock Origi, gifted Liverpool the equaliser.

Randolph made amends with a quite stunning late save to keep out Jordan Henderson’s equally sublime strike as West Ham held on for a point that sees them climb to 17th.

Reaction to all of Sunday’s Premier League matches
Karius under scrutiny again

Until recently Liverpool’s new goalkeeper had largely gone under the radar since joining from manager Jurgen Klopp’s former club Mainz in the summer.
‘Keep your mouth shut’, Phil Neville tells Liverpool’s Loris Karius
After missing the start of the season with a broken hand, Karius was installed as Klopp’s number one at the end of September, replacing Simon Mignolet.

The German had a relatively untroubled time of it in his first nine games, although small mistakes were in evidence – but nothing as high-profile as the injury-time spill that allowed Nathan Ake to score Bournemouth’s winner last time out.

And the pressure is sure to intensify on the 23-year-old after his part in West Ham’s opener, with Payet’s free-kick nicely struck but much too central to be considered unstoppable.

West Ham’s second goal was also avoidable from Liverpool’s perspective.

Havard Nordtveit’s hopeful drilled pass from his own half struck the head of the retreating Henderson, deflecting the ball high into the air and wrong-footing Reds centre-back Joel Matip, allowing Antonio in.

The West Ham man might not have had the chance to score had Karius been further advanced in his area, but nothing should be taken away from the finish, a cute poke with the outside of his boot that just had enough force to cross the line.

Liverpool lack killer instinct

Liverpool v West Ham touch map
Liverpool recorded 59 touches in the opposition box, their most in a Premier League game this season (left graphic). West Ham (right) had just five touches in the Liverpool area
Liverpool are the top scorers in the Premier League with 37 goals in 15 games, so it is perhaps uncharitable to point the finger at their forward line after this blip.

Yet for all their possession – 68% – they managed just three shots on target in the whole match, with two of those coming from West Ham errors.

The visitors were guilty of snoozing for Liverpool’s opener as Sadio Mane picked up the ball in the middle of the park and made unchecked progress to the left wing.

His cross arrived at the feet of Lallana, who had time to control and finish under zero pressure from a static West Ham defence.

Their second was also a gift, Mane’s cross inexplicably squirming out of Randolph’s gloves and landing perfectly for Origi to score for a fourth successive game in all competitions – the first Liverpool player to do so since Daniel Sturridge in February 2014.

Mane was at the heart of everything good Liverpool did in attack, playing a part in an intricate passing move that ended with a blocked Henderson shot, and then twisting and turning on the edge of the area to create an opening for Georginio Wijnaldum that flew wide.

Wijnaldum also failed to get enough curl on his shot when advancing on goal down the left channel, while Roberto Firmino was guilty of missing the target after good approach play.

Indeed Liverpool’s only other shot on target was Henderson’s superb long-distance strike, which was reminiscent of his stunning winner against Chelsea in September but met on this occasion by the right hand of the flying Randolph.

Man of the match – Sadio Mane (Liverpool)

Sadio Mane
Liverpool will be frustrated at failing to pick up all three points but that was in no way down to a lack of effort on the part of Sadio Mane, who provided the assist for both goals and could have had a hand in more had his team-mates been more clinical
Antonio finds his feet – match stats

Watford are the only side in the top half of the table to have conceded more goals (26) than Liverpool (20).
West Ham have scored five goals in their past two league games at Anfield – as many as they did in their previous 20.
Michail Antonio scored his seventh Premier League goal of the season, but his first that wasn’t a header. His last non-headed goal was at Stoke on the last day of last season.
The Hammers have now lost a league-high 12 points from leading positions in the Premier League this season.
‘The goals could have been avoided’ – reaction
Lack of ‘offensive options’ frustrates Klopp
Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp: “We tried everything. One West Ham goal was a free-kick and one was lucky. They were 2-1 up and we had some great offensive situations and should have had more. We tried everything. We were often in the box, a lot of situations.

“It felt like the whole time we were were in their box. We needed a bit of luck. A draw doesn’t feel too good, doesn’t feel too bad.

“The goals could have been avoided. For the first goal – don’t make the foul, don’t lose the ball. The second goal was unlucky. Joel Matip had a fantastic game and in this moment he couldn’t clear the ball. Loris Karius was surprised and it was too late.

“Should Karius have saved the free-kick? For this I have to see it again – I only saw it in the match.”

West Ham boss Slaven Bilic: “We showed a great reaction after they were one up. In the first half we were very good.

“I wasn’t happy with the second half because I expected us to be better on the ball. In the end, well done for the players.”

On Darren Randolph’s mistake: “It’s the nature of their job – when they make a mistake it is obvious. He made a mistake but after and before he showed real quality and he was crucial for us in moments when they had a chance or two.”
Bilic happy with ‘great point’ for Hammers
What’s next?

It’s a quick turnaround for these clubs with a round of midweek Premier League fixtures to come. Both teams are in back action at 19:45 GMT on Wednesday as Liverpool travel to Middlesbrough and West Ham host Burnley.

Match Stats
Live Text
Home TeamLiverpoolAway TeamWest Ham


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