Liverpool fight back to beat LASK 3-1 in Europa League
LINZ, Austria - Liverpool overcame an early scare and came from a goal down to claim a 3-1 win at Austria’s LASK Linz in their opening Europa League Group E game on Thursday.
Liverpool, whose last Europa League campaign came in 2015-16 and saw them lose the final 3-1 to Sevilla, looked uncomfortable in the first half against determined hosts who are playing in Europa League group stage for the third time.
LASK, third in the 2022-23 Austrian Bundesliga, took a surprise lead in the 14th minute through a stunning goal by winger Florian Flecker, who connected with a corner and blasted it in past Liverpool keeper Caoimhin Kelleher.
Liverpool had an excellent chance to level through a Darwin Nunez close-range header later in the first half but were denied by an alert save from goalkeeper Tobias Lawal.
But Nunez levelled for Juergen Klopp’s side following halftime, coolly converting from the spot after the visitors were awarded a penalty when winger Luis Diaz was taken down inside the box.
Diaz then moved Liverpool in front in the 63rd from close range, netting a brilliant cross into the middle of the box by Ryan Gravenberch, before substitute Mohamed Salah sealed the win two minutes from time with a low strike inside the far post.
In the other Group E clash, last season’s quarter-finalists Union Saint-Gilloise rescued a home 1-1 draw against Toulouse.
Bayer Leverkusen scored twice inside 16 minutes to beat Swedish champions Hacken 4-0 at home, while the 2022-23 runners-up AS Roma claimed a 2-1 win at Moldova’s Sheriff Tiraspol with a Romelu Lukaku goal.
Panathinaikos, second in the Greek Super League last season, shocked the 2020-21 winners Villarreal 2-0.
Stade Rennais midfielder Ludovic Blas found the net in the first minute to help his side earn a comfortable 3-0 win over visiting Israel champions Maccabi Haifa.
Cue. (2023l, September 21). Liverpool fight back to beat LASK 3-1 in Europa League. The Straits Times. https://www.straitstimes.com/sport/football/liverpool-fight-back-to-beat-lask-3-1-in-europa-league