Champions League: Drama As Holders Liverpool, Chelsea Lose
Written by darling on September 18, 2019
Holders Liverpool began their defence of the Champions League trophy with a defeat against Napoli on Tuesday, while one missed spot-kick condemned Chelsea to defeat against Valencia and another came to Barcelona’s rescue.
Liverpool survived a 1-0 defeat in Naples in the group stage last season to go on and win their sixth European Cup, and this time a 2-0 reverse at the San Paolo made them the first reigning champions to lose their opening game in the competition since 1994.
Both sides had chances in the Group E clash before the hosts won a late penalty with barely 10 minutes remaining when Jose Callejon went down under an Andy Robertson challenge.
Dries Mertens beat Adrian from 12 yards and substitute Fernando Llorente — who played for Tottenham Hotspur against Liverpool in last season’s final — then took advantage of a rare defensive lapse by Virgil van Dijk to make it 2-0 in stoppage time.
“I don’t think it’s a penalty. What can I say, for me, it is clear and obvious no penalty,” Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp said of the spot-kick to BT Sport. “We played a lot of good football but didn’t finish it off.”