Anfield, Liverpool, England
76′ Costa Penalty saved
Diego Costa had a second-half penalty saved, spurning the chance for Chelsea to extend their lead at the top of the Premier League to eleven points as the Blues were held to a 1-1 draw against Liverpool at Anfield.
Costa, who won the spot-kick, was unable to take advantage from 12 yards after Joël Matip sent the striker tumbling in the area, following Georginio Wijnaldum’s second-half header, which cancelled out David Luiz’s spectacular first-half freekick.
The hosts dominated the early possession and had the first sight of goal in the 11th minute when Wijnaldum fired an effort from-range, that Thibaut Courtois was forced to palm away.
In the 24th minute the Blues took the lead through a freekick after Eden Hazard was adjudged to have been fouled by Adam Lallana. Luiz took the resulting-freekick, which dipped sensationally before clipping the inside of the post and going in past an unprepared Simon Mignolet. It was the Brazilian’s first goal since returning to the club, his first Chelsea goal since April 2013.
Four minutes later Chelsea very nearly added a second from another freekick when a teasing delivery from Willian just evaded Nemanja Matić and Luiz, forcing Mignolet into palming the ball behind.
Three minutes into the restart the Reds spurned a great chance to level the scores. Hazard’s challenge on Emre Can in the area ricocheted kindly to Roberto Firmino, who had just Courtois to beat, but he fired the ball over the bar from close-range.
In the 50th minute Chelsea had a good chance themselves when Victor Moses got the better of James Milner, the Nigerian international had options but instead opted to try and beat Mignolet at his near-post from a tight-angle, but he hit the outside of the post.
Seven minutes later the hosts drew level. Milner’s header back across goal from a Jordan Henderson cross-field pass took a deflection off Moses into the path of the waiting Wijnaldum, who headed home past Courtois.
In the 75th minute the visitors were given a golden opportunity from the penalty-spot after Costa was sent tumbling in the area after Matip dangled a leg.
However, Mignolet, who was at-fault for Chelsea’s opener, guessed right to palm the spot-kick behind and atone for his earlier error.
Chelsea had another chance eleven minutes later when substitute Pedro was played through on-goal by fellow substitute Cesc Fàbregas, but Henderson made a fine last-ditch challenge to deny the Spaniard a certain-goal.
Two minutes later Pedro was involved again and went close to giving Chelsea the lead when N’Golo Kanté won possession and drove forward to find the Spaniard, who curled an effort inches wide of the far-post with Mignolet beaten.
In the 90th minute Liverpool had a great chance to win the game when substitute Sadio Máne’s cross found Firmino but his header was straight at Courtois.
The result meant that Liverpool remained in fourth but now move onto 46 points whilst Chelsea remained at the top of the league but now move onto 56 points.