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Liverpool vs Fulham LIVE: Carabao Cup result and final score as Cody Gakpo completes dramatic turnaround

Liverpool 2-1 Fulham: Two goals from Gakpo and Curtis Jones in three second-half minutes turned the tie around as the hosts came from behind at Anfield

Jamie Braidwood
Thursday 11 January 2024 00:02 GMT
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Liverpool confirm Trent Alexander Arnold sidelined for three weeks with knee injury

Substitutes Cody Gakpo and Darwin Nunez came off the bench to help turn around Liverpool’s Carabao Cup semi-final first leg at home to Fulham and ensured they will take a 2-1 lead to Craven Cottage.

The pair were introduced early in the second half with the hosts trailing to Willian’s 19th-minute goal after a Virgil van Dijk error. Liverpool were struggling for creativity without the injured Trent Alexander-Arnold - who helped turn a 3-2 Fulham lead into a 4-3 Reds win in last month’s Premier League meeting - but as at Arsenal in the FA Cup at the weekend Jurgen Klopp’s changes altered the game.

Nunez added a directness which had been lacking while Gakpo brought the composure and control to midfield Ryan Gravenberch had not before he was replaced by his Netherlands team-mate. And the pair combined for Gakpo to score in the 71st minute, just three minutes after Curtis Jones’ deflected equaliser.

Liverpool will travel to Craven Cottage for the second leg on January 24. Chelsea suffered a surprise 1-0 loss at Middlesbrough in the first leg of the other semi-final on Tuesday.

Follow live updates from Liverpool vs Fulham in the Carabao Cup semi-finals, below.

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FULL TIME! Liverpool 2-1 Fulham

Reduce Jurgen Klopp’s options on his bench and the Liverpool manager can still look a master of invention. Three days after the German changed a cup tie against capital opponents to conjure victory where defeat beckoned, he did so again. Two changes brought two goals in three minutes, another reshuffle leading to another change in fortunes. The manager felt the match-winner. It may be of scant consolation to Fulham that Arsenal know how they feel. At least Marco Silva’s side have a second chance. The problem they may already sense is that Liverpool are the toughest of teams to kill off.

Fulham were leading at Anfield, perhaps beginning to contemplate a first major trophy in their 145-year history, when Klopp summoned the only two senior outfield players left at his disposal. Within 20 minutes, Darwin Nunez had twin assists and Cody Gakpo a winner. Protect their advantage at Craven Cottage on 24 January and Wembley beckons, perhaps a second Carabao Cup triumph in three seasons.

Once again, Liverpool could enjoy a tale of two halves. The tactical changes came at the break at the Emirates Stadium and if Klopp injected his side with much-needed urgency at the interval here, he delayed a few minutes before making a double change. Nunez, with his penchant for the unpredictable, may be designed for such situations. Gakpo, though, was charged with filling what has started to look Liverpool’s problem position: for the second consecutive game, Harvey Elliott failed his audition to fill in for Mohamed Salah on the right wing. Gakpo came on and cut in from a flank he rarely occupies to deliver the most telling touch of the night.

Report by Richard Jolly at Anfield

Jurgen Klopp conjures another Liverpool escape as Fulham rue missed opportunity

Liverpool 2-1 Fulham: Cody Gakpo and Darwin Nunez came off the bench to inspire a dramatic turnaround in the Carabao Cup semi-final first leg

Jamie Braidwood10 January 2024 22:09
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Jurgen Klopp hails ‘outstanding’ Darwin Nunez for impact in Liverpool comeback

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp insists his belief is endless in his forwards whether they score or not after Darwin Nunez had an impactful but not ultimately decisive role in the 2-1 Carabao Cup semi-final first-leg win over Fulham.

After coming off the bench in the 56th minute, the Uruguay international provided the assist for Curtis Jones’ deflected equaliser and then the cross from which fellow substitute Cody Gakpo swept home the winner.

On another day Nunez, who has scored just once in the last 16 matches, could have had a late hat-trick after being denied by goalkeeper Bernd Leno which would have virtually put Liverpool in the final ahead of the second leg in a fortnight.

“He plays outstanding, I have to say it. There are so many things I love about his game,” said Klopp.

“The first year was a year to adapt and he scored here and there but now he contributes in all games.

“The boys don’t start because they score or not score. My belief and trust in them, as long as they behave properly, is endless. They deserve it because of the effort they put in.

“I don’t know how to explain the Darwin situation. I’m so happy about Darwin’s reaction and how he takes it but you cannot be more unlucky in these finishing situations, that’s not possible.

“He does absolutely everything right, yet ball not in. And then he still sets up the other goal. I think that is really special to do that again.”

Jurgen Klopp hails ‘outstanding’ Darwin Nunez for impact in Liverpool comeback

Darwin Nunez and Cody Gakpo made big impacts off the bench as Liverpool came from behind to beat Fulham

Jamie Braidwood11 January 2024 00:02
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FULL TIME! Liverpool 2-1 Fulham

Fulham manager Marco Silva, speaking to Sky Sports: “We did really well in the first half, more of a low block than we usually play but we controlled it well. They are a threat with the pace and quality of their attacking players and they can punish you at any time. We were ruthless in the first half but second half they pushed up a bit more.

“They started to create more problems, we had 10-15 minutes of good chances and De Cordova-Reid was a moment for us to score. We didn’t take that moment and we lost a few challenges we shouldn’t have done and the shot from the edge of the box took a deflection.

“We have to be more clever from a tactical point of view and we should defend our box better for their second goal.

“We’re playing at home, we’re losing 2-1 but we’re going to go for it for sure. In the second half we had good moments and we should’ve scored another goal at least but it is what it is at the top level of football.”

Jamie Braidwood10 January 2024 22:39
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FULL TIME! Liverpool 2-1 Fulham

Curtis Jones, speaking to Sky Sports: “In the first half it was tough, we had all the ball but couldn’t find the back of the net and in the second half we changed that around. The fans are leaving with smiles on their faces so I’m happy.

“I came all the way through the academy so it [scoring] means more. I’ve been around the team since I was 17 and the journey has been up and down. It has not always been easy but I’ve always stuck in there, my mindset is right, I know I have the ability and I just need the game time.”

What a brilliant run in the Liverpool team the 22-year-old is having. He was awarded the player of the match tonight.

Jamie Braidwood10 January 2024 22:20
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FULL TIME! Liverpool 2-1 Fulham

That’s 14 wins and two draws for Liverpool at home this season.

Tonight is also the seventh time this season that Liverpool have conceded the opening goal but have gone on to win.

Jamie Braidwood10 January 2024 22:14
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FULL TIME! Liverpool 2-1 Fulham

Liverpool will take a one-goal lead to Craven Cottage for the return leg on Tuesday 23 January.

Would Fulham have taken that before kick-off? Probably. But given how Fulham played in the first half and the chances they had to double their lead, I would imagine Marco Silva thinks his side have let a big opportunity slip away.

Jamie Braidwood10 January 2024 21:57
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FULL TIME! Liverpool 2-1 Fulham

Liverpool come from behind against Fulham to win a dramatic first leg of their Carabao Cup semi-final!

Jamie Braidwood10 January 2024 21:53
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Liverpool 2-1 Fulham

90+4 mins: Waste from Wilson! Can’t beat the first defender and Liverpool clear!

Jamie Braidwood10 January 2024 21:53
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Liverpool 2-1 Fulham

90+3 mins: Ooooh... Bradley has fouled Robinson, right on the left corner of the penalty area. Fulham are throwing the big lads forward...

Jamie Braidwood10 January 2024 21:52
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Liverpool 2-1 Fulham

90+2 mins: Liverpool have the ball and seem to be in control of this. It’s almost as if Fulham are still in shock after conceding twice in three minutes.

Jamie Braidwood10 January 2024 21:52

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