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Jota, Mane lead Liverpool past Atletico; Reds stay perfect in Champions League

Jota, Mane lead Liverpool past Atletico; Reds stay perfect in Champions League
Liverpool's Sadio Mane scored the second goal in a 2-0 win over Atletico Madrid in the Champions League on Wednesday in Liverpool, England. Photo by Peter Powell/EPA-EFE

Nov. 4 (UPI) -- Diogo Jota and Sadio Mane scored first-half goals to lead Liverpool to a 2-0 shutout of Atletico Madrid in the group stage of the Champions League. The Reds (4-0) secured a spot in the round of 16 with the win.

Jota and Mane scored in the 13th and 21st minutes, respectively, in the victory Wednesday at Anfield in Liverpool, England. Reds right back Trent Alexander-Arnold assisted both scores.

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Atletico played with 10 men instead of the full 11 in the second half due to a red card issued to defender Felipe. Liverpool's lone blemish came in the second half, when striker Roberto Firmino limped off the field with a hamstring injury.

"From pretty much all other points of view, it was a good performance, it's an incredible group stage so far," Reds coach Jurgen Klopp told reporters. "I wouldn't have expected that obviously when I saw the draw -- nobody would have expected that. Doing that is pretty special.

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"But for [Wednesday], job done, but we all know there are two games to go and we will try everything to win them as well. That's how it is."

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Liverpool drew first blood with a sequence out of the right corner, deep in Atletico territory. Alexander-Arnold received a pass out of the area.

He lifted his head and fired a cross that dipped in just in front of the net. Jota headed the feed past Atletico keeper Jan Oblak from point-blank range to give the Reds a 1-0 lead.

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Mane doubled the lead about eight minutes later. The striker sent a short pass to right wing Jordan Henderson in transition. Henderson dribbled right and sent another feed to Alexander-Arnold as Mane sprinted into the box.

Alexander-Arnold spotted the striker and fired a pass through several defenders. Mane finished the play with a left-footed tap between Oblak's left hip and the right goalpost.

Liverpool battles West Ham in Premier League play at 11:30 a.m. EST Sunday in London. Atletico faces Valencia in La Liga play at 10:15 a.m. EST Sunday in Valencia, Spain.

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Liverpool hosts Porto in its next Champions League match at 3 p.m. EST Nov. 24 at Anfield. Atletico hosts AC Milan in its next Champions League match at 3 p.m. EST Nov. 24 in Madrid.

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