Atalanta 0 Liverpool 5 – Jota hat-trick destroys Atalanta
UEFA Champions’ League Group D – Atalanta vs Liverpool – Tuesday, 3 November 2020 – Matchday 3 of 6 report
Atalanta 0 Liverpool 5 Match Report
Diogo Jota continued with his incredible run of form with a hat-trick as Liverpool crushed Atalanta 0-5 in a Group D clash of the Champions’ League away in Bergamo, Italy.
Jota, given a start in place of Roberto Firmino, took only a couple of minutes to make an impact with an attempt on goal but the Portuguese’s low drive was saved by Atalanta custodian Marco Sportiello.
The game swung both ways in the beginning as Sadio Mane and Curtis Jones drew saves from Sportiello while at the other end Alisson was somehow able to keep a Luis Muriel effort out with his legs.
Liverpool’s pressure paid off in the 16th minute when Trent Alexander-Arnold’s through pass found Jota who brilliantly eluded center-back Jose Palomino and dinked one over the Atalanta keeper to the far bottom corner.
Completely negating Atalanta’s three-man frontal attack, Liverpool added one more in the 33rd minute when Joe Gomez’s long diagonal ball was brilliantly received by Jota who fired his shot to the near post.
Mane forced a stunning fingertip save from Sportiello as the teams went into the interval at 0-2.
Immediately after break, Mohammad Salah took a ball in his own half, raced into the Atalanta box after cutting inside rival right-back Hans Hateboer before unleashing a terrific left-footer into the top corner within 2 minutes post the interval.
Mane got one in the 49th minute when he latched onto a through ball from Salah and chipped his shot over a beleaguered Sportiello to make it 0-4 for the visiting Reds and put the match beyond the hosts’ reach.
Duvan Zapata then missed an opportunity to reduce the deficit for Atalanta when he headed tamely into the arms of Alisson with an empty goal at his mercy.
Jota completed his hat-trick as he rounded the goalkeeper and coolly finished to complete Liverpool’s rout.
There were last gasp efforts from Atalanta as Zapata rattled the post twice and the striker’s stoppage-time effort was ruled out for offside as a consolation goal for the hosts remained elusive.
One notable feature of the match is that Atalanta’s overtly attacking strategy and maintaining a very high line got been brutally exposed and could prompt a serious rethink on coach Gian Piero Gasperini’s part.
Jurgen Klopp’s side have now won all their three Group D games so far without conceding a goal and one more victory will take them through to the knockout stages.
Atalanta are now in the 3rd spot with 4 points after their home loss and a place below Ajax who registered their first win by beating Midtjylland 2-1.
Atalanta starting XI:
Sportiello (goal), Toloi, Palomino, Djimsiti, Hateboer, Freuler, Palasic, Mojica, Gomez, Muriel, Zapata.
Subs: Malinovskyi, Pessina, Ruggeri, Depaoli, Lammers.
Liverpool starting XI:
Alisson (goal), Alexander-Arnold, Gomez, R. Williams, Robertson, Henderson, Wijnaldum, Jones, Salah, Jota, Mane.
Subs: Milner, Keita, Firmino, Tsimikas, N. Williams.
Man of the Match: