Mignolet's Stoke saves earn round of applause from Reds

Coutinho struck the winner on the half-volley

Coutinho struck the winner on the half-volley

If Liverpool do qualify for the Champions League, Jurgen Klopp argued that Saturday's 2-1 win at Stoke would be one of the season's seminal moments.

The Brazilian duo of Philippe Coutinho and Roberto Firmino were the saviours for the Reds, both coming on at half to net a goal each and cancel out Jonathan Walters' opener.

Stoke boss Mark Hughes believed his side were hard done by after a fourth straight defeat.

The Belgium worldwide has had his critics at Anfield since moving there from Sunderland back in 2013, but Saturday was arguably one of his best performances in a Liverpool shirt, as he made three excellent saves to keep the Reds in the contest. Liverpool started to dominate possession. First Coutinho levelled the scores after a Stoke defensive blunder before Firmino put the visitors ahead with a sensational individual effort.

"Man City might be looking for a goalkeeper, Liverpool might be looking for one too". It should be 2-0!

It is against the clubs lower in the league where The Reds have struggled and where their pressing tactics are nullified.

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But referee Mike Dean waved play on and Stoke took the lead soon after.

The reaction was instantaneous and, following the introduction of their third attacking option in Daniel Sturridge - himself not ready for 45 minutes of action after injury - the match was turned on its head in 125 seconds as Coutinho's penalty area strike was superseded by his compatriots wonder volley from 25 yards.

Having snatched up Luis Suarez from Anfield in 2014, Barcelona could return to try and nab Liverpool midfielder Philippe Coutinho in the summer - he is thought to be a prime target for the Catalan giants.

Speaking after the game to Liverpool fan channel Redmen TV, a Stoke City fan with a striking Stoke City beard explained that he was not impressed with what he had seen.

Visiting centre-back Ragan Klavan escaped a second booking in the 63nd minute when he blocked off Shaqiri after the Switzerland worldwide turned inside him. It was not a plan to change twice at half-time but if you start them, we would still have to.

Then Firmino lashed an unstoppable shot past Grant from the edge of the box after Wijnaldum's long ball over the top dropped perfectly for him.