Liverpool conceded a goal in the fifth minute of the reduced time to draw 1-1 with Newcastle in the Premier League on Saturday in a blow to their chances of qualifying for the Champions League.
Joe Willock’s shot deflected into a corner from Fabinho’s outstretched leg into a dramatic Anfield finish. Earlier in added time, Newcastle had an equalizer from another substitute, Callum Wilson, who was ruled out for handball against the striker.
Mohamed Salah’s 20th goal in the Premier League this season looked like winning Liverpool’s victory, which would elevate the team to four, over Tottenham, West Ham and Chelsea.
In the end, the Reds are sixth with the remaining five games of a disappointing title defense that left them to fight just to win a Champions League qualification.
Salah’s goal came in the third minute and was brilliantly taken – the Egyptian striker dropped a high ball with his left foot and turned to break the final high in the net. He became the first Liverpool player to score at least 20 goals in three different seasons in the Premier League.
Salah missed plenty of other chances to catch up with Harry Kane as this season’s top scorer in an open and often wild game, largely driven by Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp’s decision to play the top four of Diogo Giotto, Sadio Mane, Roberto Firmino and Salah.
This meant that Liverpool looked dangerous in the future – the team had 22 shots – but was left vulnerable behind.
Most of the chances created by Newcastle, for whom striker Alan Saint-Maximin was a permanent live wire, came in the first half and again after Willock and Wilson, the striker again, came off the bench in the middle of the second half.
Willock also scored an 82-minute win against West Ham last weekend, as well as an 85-minute draw against Tottenham on 4 April.
Newcastle moved nine points above the relegation zone with the remaining five games.