Liverpool player ratings, heroes and villains: Takumi Minamino and Curtis Jones superb in 2-1 Norwich win
Liverpool defeated Norwich City 2-1 at Anfield to move into the quarter-finals of the FA Cup.
Liverpool’s dream of completing an unprecedented quadruple remain very much alive as they marched into the FA Cup quarter-finals with a 2-1 victory over Norwich City.
A first-half double from Takumi Minamino ensured the Reds won the fifth-round tie at Anfield.
That did not matter, though, as Liverpool dominated the first half.
The home side deservedly took the lead in the 26th minute through Minamino’s composed close-range finish.
The Japan international doubled the Reds’ advantage on 39 minutes when a corner dropped for him at the back post and he rifled an effort home.
Norwich spurned a good chance to reduce the arrears in the 63th minute when Josh Sargent missed the target from the edge of the six-yard box.
Then six minutes later, Diogo Jota should have put Liverpool out of sight but headed over at the back stick.
The Canaries got themselves back in the tie with 13 minutes remaining when Lukas Rupp was afforded far too much space to shoot and finished beyond Alisson Becker.
Yet Liverpool held out fairly comfortably and are now just two wins away from another Wembley final.
- Takumi Minamino: he might be on the fringes of Klopp’s squad - but the forward is Liverpool’s cup king. He took both of his strikes with aplomb and has seven goals in both domestic tournaments this season.
- Curtis Jones: the homegrown midfielder was exceptional in the opening 45 minutes. He persistently asked questions of the Norwich defence with menacing runs and clever touches. Hit the bar with an effort that deserved to find the top corner. Surprisingly withdrawn at the interval.
- James Milner: deputised superbly in a makeshift right-back role. Gave Liverpool an outlet down the flank, with one foray late in the first half particularly eye-catching.
- Josh Sargent: only minutes after coming on as a substitute for Norwich, Sargent missed a huge chance. He got his close-range effort all wrong when he could have got his side back into the game.
Teemu Pukki: should have hit the target with an effort when the game was goalless. It could have changed things markedly.