Champions League - Group D
AtalantaAtalanta0LiverpoolLiverpool5

Champions League: Atalanta 0-5 Liverpool - Diogo Jota, Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane score

By Shamoon HafezBBC Sport
Diogo Jota
Diogo Jota has scored seven goals in 10 games for Liverpool

In-form Diogo Jota scored a terrific hat-trick as Liverpool made a big Champions League statement of intent with a stunning win at Atalanta.

Jurgen Klopp's side have won all three Group D games without conceding a goal, and victory in one of their remaining fixtures should be enough to take them through to the knockout stages.

Portugal international Jota showed why he was given a start ahead of Roberto Firmino by scoring for a fourth consecutive game, dinking in a delightful opener before doubling the lead with a thumping strike at the near post.

He completed his triple in the second period, collecting Sadio Mane's pass before going round goalkeeper Marco Sportiello and slotting into an open net.

In between Jota's third, the Reds netted two quick-fire goals at the start of the second half as Mohamed Salah took full advantage of an exposed backline to run clear and curl home and Mane clipped in the fourth.

The Serie A side had sniffs of goal, but Duvan Zapata's strike from the angle hit the post, while two efforts from Luis Muriel were comfortable for goalkeeper Alisson to deal with.

In the group's other game, Dutch side Ajax picked up their first of the campaign by beating Midtjylland 2-1, as the Danish team remain bottom of the group and without a point.

Joyous Jota stakes his claim

Alongside Mane and Salah, Firmino has been an automatic choice in Liverpool's front three during the club's period of success in recent years.

But the Brazil international has been off-colour this season, scoring just once in 10 games, and so Jota was given an opportunity in Bergamo which he grabbed in sublime fashion.

Some eyebrows were raised at the £41m fee paid to sign the player from Wolves, but the 23-year-old looks every bit a Liverpool player as he took his tally to seven goals in 10 games this term.

Buzzing around in the final third, he latched on to Trent Alexander-Arnold's defence-splitting pass before warding off the attentions of defender Jose Luis Palomino and chipping in a cool finish.

He took his second with aplomb, bringing down Joe Gomez's raking pass and firing in at the near post, before rolling in the third on 54 minutes to take home the match ball.

Jota's goals have been crucial this season, scoring winners against Sheffield United and West Ham and another superb performance has given boss Klopp a pleasant selection dilemma, with a colossal trip to rivals Manchester City coming up on Sunday (kick-off 16:30 GMT).

Ruthless Reds expose Atalanta

Liverpool hat-trick scores
Jota became the 10th player to score a hat-trick for Liverpool in the European Cup/Champions League

There was a feeling of doom for Premier League champions Liverpool at the start of October when they went three games without victory - losing on penalties to Arsenal in the Carabao Cup, humiliated 7-2 by Aston Villa and drawing 2-2 at Everton.

Further gloom followed at Goodison Park when key centre-back Virgil van Dijk suffered a knee injury which will keep him out for much of the season.

But the trouncing at Villa Park has proved to be merely a blip as they have responded in style by claiming victory in their last five consecutive games, with this display in Europe their most devastating of the season so far.

With a defence featuring England Under-21 international Rhys Williams, Liverpool blunted a much-lauded Atalanta side that had reached the quarter-finals last season and scored 40 goals in their previous 19 games in Europe.

At the other end of the pitch, they kept Sportiello busy, with the Atalanta goalkeeper making a stunning full-stretch save to stop Mane's curler, as well as keeping out a drive from the Senegal international.

They may well have had more goals late on but Salah screwed wide after darting clear again and Mane's free header from six yards out was straight at Sportiello.

Ultimately, all three of the attacking trident brutally exposed a high Atalanta backline, as Mane and Salah served a reminder that despite Jota taking the plaudits, they too are still very much a menacing prospect to deal with.

Liverpool have reached two of the past three Champions League finals - finishing runners-up in 2018 and lifting the trophy for the sixth time a year later - and the early signs are they will take some stopping in their bid to reach the showpiece once more.

Super scorer Salah - the stats

  • Liverpool's 5-0 win was the biggest ever by an English club away to Italian opposition in European competition.
  • Atalanta's defeat was the second-biggest ever by an Italian side on home soil in European competition, after Roma's 7-1 Champions League loss to Bayern Munich in October 2014.
  • Liverpool have won each of their past four away games in the Champions League group stage, after losing four in a row before this between October 2018 and September 2019 (all under Jurgen Klopp).
  • Liverpool boss Klopp finally won away in Italy in the Champions League after losing on each of his five previous visits in the competition, courtesy of three defeats by Napoli, and one each by Juventus and Roma.
  • This was only the second time in Champions League history that Liverpool started with two teenagers, fielding Rhys Williams and Curtis Jones (Danny Guthrie and Lee Peltier played against Galatasaray in December 2006).
  • Diogo Jota is only the second player to score in his first two starts in the Champions League for Liverpool, following Robbie Keane back in 2008.
  • Since his debut for Liverpool in October 2016, Trent Alexander-Arnold has registered 36 assists in all competitions, more than any other defender for a Premier League club in that time (Andrew Robertson is next on 35).
  • Jota has hit six goals in his past four games for Liverpool in all competitions (after just one in his first six for the Reds), with only Mohamed Salah (nine) getting more goals than the Portuguese (seven) for the club this season.
  • Salah is now the joint-highest European Cup/Champions League goalscorer in Liverpool history, along with Steven Gerrard (21).

Player of the match

Diogo JotaDiogo Jota

with an average of 9.40

Atalanta

  1. Squad number91Player nameZapata
    Average rating

    5.26

  2. Squad number57Player nameSportiello
    Average rating

    4.56

  3. Squad number10Player nameGómez
    Average rating

    4.36

  4. Squad number9Player nameMuriel
    Average rating

    4.05

  5. Squad number88Player namePasalic
    Average rating

    4.03

  6. Squad number6Player namePalomino
    Average rating

    4.01

  7. Squad number2Player nameRafael Tolói
    Average rating

    3.98

  8. Squad number33Player nameHateboer
    Average rating

    3.93

  9. Squad number11Player nameFreuler
    Average rating

    3.91

  10. Squad number26Player nameMojica
    Average rating

    3.91

  11. Squad number19Player nameDjimsiti
    Average rating

    3.89

  12. Squad number7Player nameLammers
    Average rating

    3.88

  13. Squad number27Player nameDepaoli
    Average rating

    3.84

  14. Squad number40Player nameRuggeri
    Average rating

    3.81

  15. Squad number18Player nameMalinovskiy
    Average rating

    3.80

  16. Squad number32Player namePessina
    Average rating

    3.75

Liverpool

  1. Squad number20Player nameDiogo Jota
    Average rating

    9.40

  2. Squad number10Player nameMané
    Average rating

    8.55

  3. Squad number11Player nameMohamed Salah
    Average rating

    8.35

  4. Squad number1Player nameAlisson
    Average rating

    8.33

  5. Squad number66Player nameAlexander-Arnold
    Average rating

    8.12

  6. Squad number12Player nameGomez
    Average rating

    7.96

  7. Squad number26Player nameRobertson
    Average rating

    7.95

  8. Squad number46Player nameR Williams
    Average rating

    7.94

  9. Squad number14Player nameHenderson
    Average rating

    7.84

  10. Squad number17Player nameJones
    Average rating

    7.79

  11. Squad number5Player nameWijnaldum
    Average rating

    7.72

  12. Squad number7Player nameMilner
    Average rating

    7.50

  13. Squad number8Player nameKeita
    Average rating

    7.22

  14. Squad number76Player nameN Williams
    Average rating

    7.19

  15. Squad number9Player nameRoberto Firmino
    Average rating

    7.07

  16. Squad number21Player nameTsimikas
    Average rating

    7.06

Line-ups

Atalanta

Formation 3-4-1-2

  • 57Sportiello
  • 2Toloi
  • 6Palomino
  • 19Djimsiti
  • 33HateboerSubstituted forDepaoliat 81'minutes
  • 88PasalicSubstituted forMalinovskiyat 63'minutes
  • 11Freuler
  • 26MojicaSubstituted forRuggeriat 81'minutes
  • 10GómezSubstituted forLammersat 81'minutes
  • 9MurielSubstituted forPessinaat 53'minutes
  • 91Zapata

Substitutes

  • 7Lammers
  • 17Romero
  • 18Malinovskiy
  • 27Depaoli
  • 31Rossi
  • 32Pessina
  • 40Ruggeri
  • 42Scalvini
  • 59Al Miranchuk
  • 72Ilicic
  • 79Traore
  • 95Gollini

Liverpool

Formation 4-3-3

  • 1Alisson
  • 66Alexander-ArnoldSubstituted forN Williamsat 82'minutes
  • 46R Williams
  • 12Gomez
  • 26RobertsonSubstituted forKeitaat 66'minutes
  • 17JonesBooked at 21mins
  • 14HendersonSubstituted forMilnerat 65'minutes
  • 5WijnaldumBooked at 21minsSubstituted forTsimikasat 82'minutes
  • 11Salah
  • 20JotaSubstituted forFirminoat 65'minutes
  • 10Mané

Substitutes

  • 7Milner
  • 8Keita
  • 9Firmino
  • 13Adrián
  • 18Minamino
  • 21Tsimikas
  • 23Shaqiri
  • 27Origi
  • 32Matip
  • 62Kelleher
  • 64Cain
  • 76N Williams
Referee:
Ovidiu Hategan

Match Stats

Home TeamAtalantaAway TeamLiverpool
Possession
Home43%
Away57%
Shots
Home9
Away15
Shots on Target
Home6
Away12
Corners
Home6
Away7
Fouls
Home6
Away16

Live Text

  1. Post update

    Match ends, Atalanta 0, Liverpool 5.

  2. Full Time

    Second Half ends, Atalanta 0, Liverpool 5.

  3. Post update

    Offside, Atalanta. Fabio Depaoli tries a through ball, but Duván Zapata is caught offside.

  4. Post update

    Corner, Atalanta. Conceded by Neco Williams.

  5. Post update

    Foul by Joseph Gomez (Liverpool).

  6. Post update

    Duván Zapata (Atalanta) wins a free kick on the right wing.

  7. Post update

    Foul by Rhys Williams (Liverpool).

  8. Post update

    Sam Lammers (Atalanta) wins a free kick on the left wing.

  9. Post update

    Attempt blocked. Matteo Ruggeri (Atalanta) left footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Ruslan Malinovskiy with a cross.

  10. Post update

    Corner, Atalanta. Conceded by Neco Williams.

  11. Post update

    Foul by Joseph Gomez (Liverpool).

  12. Post update

    Duván Zapata (Atalanta) wins a free kick on the right wing.

  13. Post update

    Foul by Roberto Firmino (Liverpool).

  14. Post update

    Ruslan Malinovskiy (Atalanta) wins a free kick on the right wing.

  15. Post update

    Hand ball by Fabio Depaoli (Atalanta).

  16. Post update

    Attempt saved. Sadio Mané (Liverpool) header from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by James Milner with a cross.

  17. Post update

    Corner, Liverpool. Conceded by Marco Sportiello.

  18. Post update

    Attempt saved. Mohamed Salah (Liverpool) left footed shot from the left side of the box is saved in the bottom right corner. Assisted by Neco Williams.

  19. Post update

    Attempt blocked. Duván Zapata (Atalanta) header from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Ruslan Malinovskiy with a cross.

  20. Post update

    Corner, Atalanta. Conceded by Rhys Williams.

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