Eden Hazard made the difference as Chelsea make a superb 1-2 comeback win against Liverpool at Anfield.
Eden Hazard came off the bench to score a wonderful winner as Chelsea battled from behind to beat Liverpool 2-1 in the EFL Cup third round, the Reds seeing their winning streak end at Anfield.
Liverpool led thanks to Daniel Sturridge’s acrobatic effort, with Jurgen Klopp’s men seeking to extend their victorious run at the start of 2018-19 to eight games despite resting Mohamed Salah.
After nutmegging Roberto Firmino in the build-up, Hazard swapped passes with Cesar Azpilicueta, cut inside off the right, dashed past a static defence and lashed an unstoppable drive across Simon Mignolet.
Liverpool, though, will quickly have a chance for revenge as they head to Chelsea protecting a perfect Premier League record for a blockbuster Stamford Bridge clash on Saturday.
Alvaro Morata had the game’s first big chance in the 19th minute, but, after collecting a superb lofted pass from compatriot Cesc Fabregas, he was denied by Mignolet’s fingertips and failed to convert the rebound from a tight angle.
Naby Keita’s penalty appeals were turned down when he went down under Gary Cahill’s challenge, then the midfielder forced an excellent save from Willy Caballero, who kept out a Sadio Mane header before half-time.
Sturridge should have put Liverpool ahead immediately after the restart, but, having intercepted a dreadful Gary Cahill backpass and rounded Caballero, he shot wide of the open goal.
Liverpool led in the 58th minute, though, Sturridge turning in an acrobatic finish after Caballero could only push away Mane’s drive, Azpilicueta’s loose pass having put his team in trouble.
Hazard’s introduction was the key moment as Liverpool lost at home for the first time since January, Chelsea levelling from the winger’s free-kick when Emerson touched in the rebound from Mignolet saving a Ross Barkley header, with the goal surviving a long VAR review.
And Hazard then came up with a fantastic goal to book Chelsea’s place in the next round, consigning Liverpool to defeat ahead of Saturday’s Premier League rematch.
That's it… WHAT. A. WIN! 🙌
— Chelsea FC (@ChelseaFC) September 26, 2018