The latest Premier League own goal on record was decisive as Liverpool’s luck finally ran out in a 2-1 loss at Tottenham on Saturday, ending the Reds’ 17-match unbeaten run. We look back at the key Tottenham vs Liverpool stats.
Liverpool fans had seen it coming; several times already this season they’d tempted fate, with Jürgen Klopp’s men making a habit of conceding first before coming back to win. Their luck, spirit, mentality, whatever you want to call it, only went so far.
Of course, in another show of frustrating nominative determinism, Liverpool – the Reds – truly embraced their nickname as they had another two players sent off at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on Saturday, and in the end they didn’t have enough to hold Tottenham at bay in a gutting 2-1 defeat.
But the last-gasp Joël Matip own goal sparked bedlam for the home fans; it meant Spurs have now won 17 points from their seven Premier League games this season, a total they have only ever bettered once in the top flight (24 points, converted for three points for a win) in 1960-61 when they went on to win the title.
Ange Postecoglou’s impact has been immediate and emphatic, though even he’ll acknowledge they were given something of a helping hand here.
For a game that went on to produce such drama, and one some were billing as potentially the match of the season so far beforehand, it took longer than might’ve been expected for proceedings to heat up.
But you can always rely on a red card to spice things up, and referee Simon Hooper duly obliged in the 26th minute; Curtis Jones went in forcefully on Yves Bissouma, appearing to win the ball. However, his foot seemed to slide off the top of the ball and into his opponent’s leg, with his subsequent yellow card swapped for a red following a VAR review.
It was Liverpool’s third red card of the season; they’ve only ever had more over the course of a full Premier League campaign five times, with five being the most being shown to them.
Despite there being a degree of controversy around the decision, suddenly Spurs had the upper hand and took advantage just after the half-hour as Son Heung-min rounded off an incisive move with a tap-in for his sixth Premier League goal against Liverpool, only netting more versus Southampton (10), Leicester City (9) and Crystal Palace (7).
Liverpool were then given another reason to be frustrated with the officials soon after, with Luis Díaz’s seemingly legal goal – a crisp finish into the bottom-left corner – confusingly disallowed for offside when replays suggested the Colombian was onside. The PGMOL have since come out to admit human error, which we’ll surely hear a lot more about this week.
Though it wasn’t as if they had to wait much longer to restore parity. On the stroke of half-time, Virgil van Dijk nodded a cross back into the danger zone and Cody Gakpo allowed the ball to run across his body back to goal, before swivelling and blasting through a crowd of players, that being his fifth successive Liverpool goal away from Anfield.
They still had time to go close again before the break; Díaz poking just wide after meeting Mohamed Salah’s gorgeous defence-splitting pass.
And therein lies the reason Liverpool can remain such a potent attacking force even when reduced to 10 men. Salah, Díaz and Gakpo offer such quality in the final third that they’ll practically always be a threat, and the team as a collective clearly boasts an impressive mentality.
After all, before Saturday, Liverpool had been unbeaten in their previous seven Premier League games when they’d had a player sent off (when the opposition didn’t have any reds), winning five of them. Two were this season.
But this challenge was still due to go up a notch in difficulty.
That’s right, another red card; Liverpool’s fourth in seven matches, a new Premier League record at this stage of the season. A cynical foul by Diogo Jota brought the Portugal international a second yellow card just one minutes and 27 seconds after his first. Off he trudged, leaving Liverpool down to nine men with 20 minutes left. Klopp was forced to act, bringing Salah and Díaz off for defenders as this quickly became a damage limitation job.
It looked to have worked. Spurs ran out of ideas, their direct and desperate deliveries into the box largely causing Matip, Ibrahima Konaté, Van Dijk and Alisson few issues as Liverpool dug deep. It was going to be a commendable point.
But just when Spurs’ efforts looked as though they’d come to little, lady luck turned her gaze their way. Pedro Porro got in behind down the right and flashed a low cross into the six-yard box; it bobbled, cannoned off Matip’s left shin and into the top-right corner.
The latest Premier League own goal (95:31) and latest winning goal conceded by Liverpool on record, this was as crushing as they come for Matip and his teammates, while Klopp was left contemplating potential deeper issues behind the fact they’ve spent over 122 minutes more than any other team this season with less than 11 men on the pitch.
However, it was the fifth 90th-minute match-winning goal of the Premier League season, and the second in Spurs’ last two at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium; this was another barometer of Spurs’ own impressive spirit as Postecoglou’s sensational start shows little sign of letting up.
Our Opta match centre below delivers you all the Tottenham vs Liverpool stats from Saturday’s thriller at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.
The match centre includes team and player stats, expected goals data, passing networks, an Opta chalkboard and more. It gives you everything you need to do your own post-match.