A much-changed Liverpool team were made to work for their League Cup progression against Preston North End but Divock Origi capped the night at Deepdale with an outrageous back-heel finish.
Takumi Minamino had given Liverpool the lead in the 62nd minute but the Reds still looked vulnerable when Origi popped up to settle the contest with an extraordinary goal.
Origi has scored some sensational and hugely important goals in his Liverpool career but you’d be hard-pressed to find one with more finesse than the finish applied against the Championship strugglers.
Watch: Divock Origi scores a stunning back-heel goal
After the match Jurgen Klopp acknowledged Liverpool’s overall performance was not one of their best.
“We didn’t play well; that’s how it is. We started quite OK, but then we lost the structure completely and that was the problem. We were too lively, too desperate to get the ball. Everybody dropped and we didn’t have enough players between the lines, we didn’t have [someone] always in behind the lines. That’s normal, that can absolutely happen when you don’t play a lot together. These boys, they train a lot together but they don’t play that much [together], so that absolutely can happen. That makes it difficult, especially because Preston was not too bothered about any kind of possession, they kicked the ball long and they fought for these balls. All of a sudden, they get set-pieces, the atmosphere comes, we lose the momentum, they get the momentum. Football games are like this. I saw a lot of nice individual performances; as a team we can play better, but individually I saw a few really nice performances and that’s absolutely OK. It’s all about getting through to the next round, that’s what we did. That it [would be] difficult with 11 changes, that was clear.
“Taki is high quality. Taki’s problem is… actually, there is no problem apart from the other players in his positions are really good and thank God for us they are not injured. That’s it. Taki is absolutely fine, Taki is in an outstanding moment, training-wise much better than he showed tonight but he was the most dangerous player and scores a goal, which is really important. He understands our game as well really well, so you can throw him in and he can be immediately a massive part of our football. Tonight he was, obviously. Taki was good, but we all know he can be even much better. Divock’s goal was just Divock Origi; it was obviously not a striker’s game because we didn’t play that well and it is difficult for the strikers, but the goal he scored was quite special.”