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Alisson the hero as Liverpool edge Chelsea to lift FA Cup

Alisson the hero as Liverpool edge Chelsea to lift FA Cup

PA Media/dpa
London
Alisson Becker was the spot-kick hero as Liverpool secured another penalty shoot-out triumph against Chelsea to win the FA Cup on Saturday and keep their quest for an unprecedented quadruple alive.
Just 76 days after the Reds edged past Thomas Tuchel’s men on penalties following a scoreless League Cup final, Wembley witnessed another gripping clash between these sides that went down to the wire.
Nothing could split them after 90 minutes and extra time again, with Alisson coming up trumps in the shoot-out as Liverpool won their first FA Cup since 2006.
Edouard Mendy prevented Sadio Mane striking the winner after Cesar Azpilicueta had hit the post, only for the Brazil goalkeeper to deny Mason Mount before substitute Kostas Tsimikas struck to seal a 6-5 win.
While the quadruple may eventually prove out of reach given Manchester City’s Premier League advantage, Jürgen Klopp’s Reds still have a shot at Champions League glory to come as a superb season heads towards a memorable conclusion.
“It is amazing. We did such a good performance,” Alisson said.
“It was a shame we didn’t score during normal time, but it was a proper fight after in extra time, anything could happen.
“We kept a clean sheet, it went to penalties and after the boys were unbelievable with scoring the goals and then I just needed to save the last one. I am so happy.
“The goalkeeper coaches help me, but in the end, there with the penalty I have to make my own decision. Chelsea are all fantastic players, but I only did that save because we deserved to win.” Wembley was rocking to Liverpool’s beat at full-time, just as it was in the opening minutes as they flew out the blocks.
But Chelsea saw out the early storm and began to ask questions at the other end in a first half that saw Reds star Mohamed Salah limp off injured.
Marcos Alonso’s audacious free-kick hit the bar during a rampant Chelsea start to a topsy-turvy second period, which ended with Luis Diaz and Andrew Robertson striking the post for Liverpool.
That pulsating half made way for a tepid period of extra time between exhausted sides that raised themselves for penalties, which ended with red smoke and Liverpool cheers filling the air.
“That is part of the ‘mentality monsters’ as well, going to extra time and keeping the high level, performing well,” Alisson said.
“It gives us even more confidence to keep on going for the Premier League and also the Champions League final. This is a fantastic moment and now we just need to enjoy it.”

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