Liverpool failed to make the most of Granit Xhaka’s 24th-minute red card as Arsenal took away a 0-0 draw from the first leg of their Carabao Cup semi-final on Thursday night
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- 06:37, 14 Jan 2022
Takumi Minamino ’s Liverpool career was “summed up” by his dreadful miss in the 0-0 draw against Arsenal on Thursday night, according to Jamie Carragher.
Jurgen Klopp’s side could not make the most of Granit Xhaka ’s red card in the 24th minute as the first leg of their Carabao Cup semi-final ended goalless at Anfield.
The hosts missed Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane, who are away on international duty at the Africa Cup of Nations, as Minamino, Diogo Jota and Roberto Firmino mustered just one shot on target between them.
That was as many as 10-man Arsenal, who forced a save from Alisson through Bukayo Saka in the second half.
Despite their stuttering performance, Liverpool still should have taken a one-goal lead to the second leg in north London next Thursday.
Takumi Minamino missed the best chance of the game at Anfield
Peter Byrne/PA Wire)
The best chance of the match fell to Minamino, who was presented with an open goal after Aaron Ramsdale came out but failed to clear Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain’s cross.
With Ramsdale, Rob Holding and Albert Sambi Lokonga on the floor, Minamino had an excellent chance to put in the loose ball.
However, the Japan international could not take it as he leant back and smashed a wild half-volley way over the bar.
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“He panics, runs into it and he hits it with his laces,” Carragher explained on Sky Sports.
“If he shows some composure, he just waits for the ball and side foots it in.
“But in a nutshell that summed up Liverpool tonight and also summed up Minamino’s Liverpool career.
“It just hasn’t happened for him at all. He’s never really done a lot in a Liverpool shirt and that sums it up.”
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Takumi Minamino blazed over in front of an open goal
Minamino was one of the players earmarked to step up while Mane and Salah are away at AFCON, but he failed to make an impact on Thursday night.
Liverpool signed the 26-year-old attacker from Red Bull Salzburg in January 2019 after paying his release clause of £7.25million.
He has struggled to break into Klopp’s side and has contributed just nine goals and three assists in 46 appearances for the club.
Klopp refused to focus on Minamino’s miss and instead admitted that Liverpool did not create enough chances overall against 10 men.
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“It looked like we were under pressure. That makes no sense but that is human,” he said.
"You go out there to win. It's difficult against a well-drilled formation. We didn't create enough, we didn't do lots of things not good enough. But in the end it's 0-0, half time, let's go.
"I know we can play better, we know we have to play better. A lot of things I liked, but the general outcome was not good enough.
"That's the truth of this game and we have to accept it."
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