sport news Lincoln 2-7 Liverpool: Clinical Reds ease past League One side as Jones and ...

Lincoln City's goalkeeper was a Liverpool fan as a little boy and had spent the last week relishing the opportunity to face the champions.

Sometimes, though, you need to be careful for what you wish. Palmer found himself stuck between the posts as a helpless bystander for a night when Liverpool's second string team decided to cut loose to see who could score the most spectacular goal.

No blame could attached to Palmer but he must have found it difficult to comprehend what was happening in the opening 45 minutes, when Liverpool wasted no time in securing their progress into round four, and a date with Arsenal, with four quite beautiful strikes. 

Xherdan Shaqiri opened the scoring in the ninth minute with an exquisite free-kick which soared over the Lincoln wall

Xherdan Shaqiri opened the scoring in the ninth minute with an exquisite free-kick which soared over the Lincoln wall

Takumi Minamino quickly added a second with another fine finish as Jurgen Klopp's side took control of the third-round tie

Takumi Minamino quickly added a second with another fine finish as Jurgen Klopp's side took control of the third-round tie

Curtis Jones made it 3-0 with half an hour gone as he hit a curling shot into the top corner beyond goalkeeper Alex Palmer

Curtis Jones made it 3-0 with half an hour gone as he hit a curling shot into the top corner beyond goalkeeper Alex Palmer

Lincoln goalkeeper Alex Palmer was a Liveprool fan growing up but was forced to pick the ball out of his net seven times

Lincoln goalkeeper Alex Palmer was a Liveprool fan growing up but was forced to pick the ball out of his net seven times 

There was a point during that period, as the goals flew in, that Jurgen Klopp was heard shouting: "I love it!" and he had every reason to be so effusive. Lincoln had waited 60 years for Liverpool to visit Sincil Bank but, after this, they will hope it is another 60 years before they meet again.

Xherdan Shaqiri started the rout, with a glorious free-kick, in the ninth minute, and from that point Liverpool showed no mercy. Yes, they were given space to play by a team riding high in League One, but, even still, it was the ruthless way that they put Michael Appleton's team away.

By the end, Liverpool had scored six and you could not help but wonder whether Klopp is going to have a proper assault on a trophy the club have won eight times. The squad he brought over cost more than £230million and it certainly has the ability to go a long way.

Take Shaqiri. He had only played eight minutes for Liverpool in 2020, the product of two substitute appearances against Tottenham in January and Arsenal in July, but he reminded everyone of his prodigious ability with the first strike that whistled beyond Palmer.

Jones scored his second before half-time with another top-corner finish although his shot took a deflection its way through

Jones scored his second before half-time with another top-corner finish although his shot took a deflection its way through

Liverpool will face Arsenal at Anfield in the fourth-round after the Gunners beat Leicester 2-0 on Wednesday evening

Liverpool will face Arsenal at Anfield in the fourth-round after the Gunners beat Leicester 2-0 on Wednesday evening

Minamino grabbed his second goal of the evening just after half-time, following up Shaqiri's saved effort for a simple tap-in

Minamino grabbed his second goal of the evening just after half-time, following up Shaqiri's saved effort for a simple tap-in

MATCH FACTS

Lincoln (4-3-3): Palmer; Bradley; Eyoma; Montsma; Melbourne; Jones (Hopper 60); Bridcutt (McGrandles 60); Edun; Anderson; Scully; Grant

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