Last 16 2nd Leg
Liverpool 2-3 Atletico Madrid AET (Agg. 2-4)
Three dramatic goals in extra time saw Atletico Madrid knock holders Liverpool out of the Champions League, winning 3-2 at Anfield.
A mixture of sloppy finishing from Liverpool and brilliant goalkeeping from Jan Oblak meant Liverpool, for whom Jordan Henderson and Andrew Robertson returned in front of a full house at Anfield, were taken to extra-time when they had the chances to win the game in the regulation 90 minutes.
And that profligacy in front of goal came back to haunt them as substitute Marcos Llorente scored twice to cause a major shock and send Liverpool out of the competition before Alvaro Morata added a late third to complete the comeback.
Liverpool, trailing 1-0 from the first leg, broke through two minutes before half-time when Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain got to the byline and pulled back a cross to Georginio Wijnaldum who powered an angled header into the bottom corner.
That came after Liverpool had made a bright start to the game with Oxlade-Chamberlain, Sadio Mane and Robertson all testing Oblak.
The hosts also made a bright start to the second-half as they looked to get the job done, which led to Atletico withdrawing Diego Costa for the more defensive-minded Llorente.
Although Joao Felix forced Adrian into a scrambling save, the first real time the Liverpool goalkeeper had been called into action, the hosts continued to threaten with Robertson heading against the bar and Alexander-Arnold going close twice, direct from a corner and with a long-range effort
As the clock ticked down on normal time Mane missed with an overhead kick and a Salah dribble came to nothing as Liverpool laid siege on the Atletico goal in a desperate search for the winning goal.
It didn’t come but in the opening stages of extra-time Liverpool finally made the breakthrough when Wijnaldum surged down the right wing before crossing for Roberto Firmino, who scored on the volley after seeing his initial effort come back off the post.
Yet then it all went wrong — a dreadful pass out from goalkeeper Adrian straight to Joao Felix, gifted Atletico the ball and Llorente punished the Liverpool goalkeeper for his error with a precise shot into the far corner.
Llorente then produced a carbon-copy finish as Liverpool’s defence backed off following good work on the counter from Morata to end Liverpool’s hopes of defending their European crown.
Morata put the icing on the cake in the final moments after a breakaway.
“When games get to the last few minutes like that, when it was tight and we were suffering a lot, and we managed to score, the victory tastes even better,” Llorente said postmatch.
“We don’t know where our ceiling is for fighting and suffering. The team did an amazing job, we all defended to the death and when the whole team is involved like that, these things happen.
“Just being able to score a goal and go through to the next round is an emotion and feeling that you can’t describe.
“I’m really happy, we’re all happy to go through, there’s a lot of work to do in the league and we’re all looking forward to keeping going.”
Tonight’s other Champions League tie saw PSG defeat Borussia Dortmund 2-0 (3-2 on aggregate) to book a place in the last eight.