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Shocking Alisson statistic sums up why Liverpool struggled vs. Atalanta – Liverpool FC

Liverpool started strong but were quickly snuffed out in their Europa League decider at Atalanta, with Alisson‘s post-match statistics summing the night up.

Hopes were kindled when, with just seven minutes on the clock, Mohamed Salah netted his penalty to bring the aggregate scoreline to 3-1 in Thursday’s quarter-final.

But that was to be Liverpool’s peak in a second leg that promised much but, as has often been the case of late, delivered little.

The Reds dominated possession in Bergamo, with 70 percent of the ball per FotMob, but they increasingly struggled to even break out of the middle third of the pitch.

Ibrahima Konate (106) was the only player to end the game with more touches than Alisson (105), while no player completed more passes than the goalkeeper (82).

More startingly, though, according to Opta’s Michael Reid, Alisson made more passes than any other goalkeeper in either the Champions League or Europa League since records began.

Alisson touched the ball more than two times the amount of opposite number Juan Musso (46), and his total of completed passes was more than five times that of the Atalanta stopper (15).

BERGAMO, ITALY - Thursday, April 18, 2024: Liverpool's Alexis Mac Allister (L) and goalkeeper Alisson Becker looks dejected after the UEFA Europa League Quarter-Final 2nd Leg match between BC Atalanta and Liverpool FC at the Stadio Atleti Azzurri d'Italia. (Photo by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

It highlights just how difficult Liverpool found it to break down Atalanta, who employed man-marking throughout both legs of the tie.

A familiar pattern set in during the second half as Alisson recycled the ball to his centre-backs, with Alexis Mac Allister also dropping in to keep possession ticking.

There was never a killer ball, though, and rarely even an attempt to break the lines – with one notable situation seeing Curtis Jones collect from Konate and slow play down just as the Frenchman looked to drive through midfield.

That Alisson saw so much of the ball is not an issue in itself, given Liverpool won the game – but in the context of a two-legged tie, it clearly was.

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