Four observations from Liverpool’s thrilling victory at Norwich

Adam Lallana snatched a last-gasp winner as Liverpool edged out Norwich City in a nine-goal thriller on Saturday.

The Reds forward’s strike cancelled out a stoppage-time equaliser by Sebastian Bassong in a game which also saw goals from Roberto Henderson, Jordan Henderson and a brace from Roberto Firmino for Jurgen Klopp’s side.

Here are four main talking points from a breathless affair at Carrow Road.

  1. Corners continue to embarrass Liverpool

Ask any ardent Liverpool fan and they will tell you that the only element of consistency within the team this season has been their inability to defend set pieces.

Goals conceded in recent weeks against both Arsenal and Manchester United, continued this trend, and Dieumerci Mbokani’s equaliser demonstrated that pattern looks difficult to break.

Opposition teams are becoming wise to this and are delivering whipped balls into the box, in the knowledge that neither Mignolet nor his defenders can cope.

Mbokani showed strength and invention to score, however Liverpool’s inability to deal with the ball into the box and their subsequent fragility to readjust to the loose ball cost them a goal.

  1. Greater steel needed when going gets tough

One of the most popular stats from Liverpool’s eventual victory was that they have conceded from the first shot on target against them in each Premier League game in 2016.

Whilst this is an alarming statistic on its own, the reaction of players to going behind is of greater concern. The response to Mbokani’s goal was akin to that following Aaron Ramsey’s strike 10 days ago.

Despite still being in a strong position in the game, Liverpool panicked and allowed Norwich to control possession, which in turn led to Steven Naismith’s goal.

Only following Norwich’s third goal did the away side begin to wake up and take responsibility in the game.

  1. Faith in Benteke will be rewarded

Despite admitting to being a big fan of the Belgian, Klopp continues to appear uncertain as to the best way to deploy Christian Benteke.

Benteke has had some injury concerns in recent months, but is now back fully fit. Klopp prefers to cherry pick games for him.

However the counter to this is goalscoring form of Firmino, who notched another brace against Norwich, yet with Philippe Coutinho still absent surely a better attacking axis can be created by starting with both players.

Benteke’s second half introduction showed what he can offer as an attacking focal point, allowing the likes Firmino, Lallana and co greater freedom in the final third.

  1. Give Caulker a chance – in defence

Steven Caulker’s brief spell on Merseyside has seen him deployed as an emergency centre forward in all of his appearances so far. Whilst he does possess certain target-man qualities, that is not what he was brought in for.

He was recruited to help regain some composure and authority to an ailing defence, and the performances of Mahmadou Sakho of late, certainly offers little case for the defence.

Kolo Toure has been rewarded with an extended run of late, and Caulker’s aerial presence and strength from set pieces indicate he could prove more than just a backup, as Toure’s partner.