Liverpool have been cut to 10/11 (from 6/5) at Betfred to win the Champions League, ahead of Manchester City at 6/5. Meanwhile, Villarreal have drifted to 66/1 (from 20/1).
We saw an absolute classic on Tuesday night between Man City and Real Madrid.
This time, we were at Anfield to see quadruple-chasing Liverpool host Villarreal in their Champions League semi-final first leg tie.
As expected, the opening exchanges saw Liverpool start brightly and quickly while Villarreal sat deep and attempted to absorb as much pressure as they could.
It was clear what the game plan was from Villarreal – hold resistant for as long as possible and hit Liverpool on the break. But for most of the opening 45 minutes, it felt like Villarreal couldn’t get out of their own half.
The closest Liverpool came in their 13 attempts on goal in the first-half was Thiago’s long-distance strike crashing the outside of the post, as seen below.
However, the resistance of the ‘Yellow Submarine’ was eventually broken early in the second-half. Jordan Henderson’s cross deflected in off Pervis Estupinan.
Moments later, Sadio Mane doubled Liverpool’s lead to put them in full control of the tie.
INCREDIBLE STUFF! ⚡️⚡️
Moments after Jordan Henderson’s deflected cross found the net, Sadio Mane doubles Liverpool’s lead! 🔴
All of a sudden the Reds are dominating Villarreal 💪#UCL pic.twitter.com/PDphIrPTAx
— Football on BT Sport (@btsportfootball) April 27, 2022
Villarreal once again couldn’t get out of their own half and it was utter domination from the Reds from the first whistle to the last.
Luis Diaz and Virgil van Dijk both went close to scoring a third for Liverpool but Jurgen Klopp will be happy with a two goal advantage.
The result leaves them in great position heading into the second leg in Spain next week, and almost certainly leaves them with one foot in the final at the end of May.
Champions League Betting Odds