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Liverpool shuts out Midtjylland, stays perfect in Champions League

Liverpool's Mohamed Salah scored on a penalty kick against Midtjylland in stoppage time of a Champions League match on Tuesday in Liverpool, England. Photo by Michael Regan/EPA-EFE
Liverpool's Mohamed Salah scored on a penalty kick against Midtjylland in stoppage time of a Champions League match on Tuesday in Liverpool, England. Photo by Michael Regan/EPA-EFE

Oct. 28 (UPI) -- Reigning Premier League champions Liverpool beat Midtjylland 2-0 in a group stage match to move to 2-0 in the 2020-2021 UEFA Champions League. The Reds have yet to allow a goal in the tournament.

Diogo Jota and Mohamed Salah each scored second-half goals in the victory on Tuesday at Anfield in Liverpool, England. The Reds beat Ajax 1-0 in their first Group D match on Oct. 21 in Amsterdam in the Netherlands.

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"I think Midtjylland wanted to prove a point -- and they did probably -- that they can be a really uncomfortable opponent," Reds manager Jurgen Klopp told reporters.

"That's what they were. For us the challenge was to deal with the pressing."

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Liverpool and Midtjylland played a scoreless first half before the Reds broke the deadlock in the 55th minute. Reds midfielder Georginio Wijnaldum played a ball to the right corner flag to set up the first score. Right back Trent Alexander-Arnold then tracked down the feed before he did a give-and-go pass sequence with midfielder Xherdan Shaqiri.

Alexander-Arnold slipped behind the defense before he received the pass back from Shaqiri before he slid another pass in front of the goal to his left.

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Jota then ran in and knocked in a shot from point-blank range for a 1-0 lead.

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Both teams came close to more goals down the stretch before a Midtjylland foul in stoppage time resulted in the game's final score.

Midtjylland left back Paulinho took Salah down inside the box to set up a penalty kick during the sequence. The Midtjylland defender received a yellow card for the foul.

Salah stepped up to the penalty mark and smashed a shot into the right side of the net for the late score.

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"It was always going to be tough," Alexander-Arnold said. "It's the Champions League, so you never expect an easy game. But we've kept a clean sheet, which we're happy with, and we played well.

"We did our job. It wasn't our best game but we've got the job done."

The Reds battle West Ham Saturday in the Premier League before they return to the Champions League group stage for a match against Atalanta on Tuesday in Bergamo, Italy.

Midtjylland faces Nordsjaelland in the Danish Superliga on Saturday before they battle Ajax in the group stage on Tuesday in Herning, Denmark.

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