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Summary

  1. Fimino & Sturridge start up front for Liverpool
  2. Gestede preferred to Negredo by Boro
  3. Liverpool must match or better Arsenal result to make Champions League

Live Reporting

By Mike Henson

All times stated are UK

Get involved

Bye for now

Liverpool 3-0 Middlesbrough

Follow the main live for all the reaction from this and the rest of the day's action.

FULL-TIME

Liverpool 3-0 Middlesbrough

Never in doubt.

Apart from the first 45 minutes that is.

A few flares are alight in the stands and Jurgen Klopp clamps his hand to his heart in relief.

Liverpool 3-0 Middlesbrough

Adam Forshaw whiffs a shot straight into the arms of Simon Mignolet.

You'll Never Walk Alone is ringing around Anfield and the Kop barely miss a note.

SUBSTITUTION

Liverpool 3-0 Middlesbrough

Liverpool bring on Alberto Moreno for James Milner and the Reds skipper hands the armband onto Lucas as he departs.

A popular move.

Lucas is being urged to shoot every time he touches the ball...

As it stands

Liverpool into Champions League

.
.

You can't see any way of the top four changing now.

SUBSTITUTION

Liverpool 3-0 Middlesbrough

Body language reading glasses at the ready.

Daniel Sturridge departs, clapping the Liverpool fans, but not waving, before high-fiving Jurgen Klopp on his way back to the bench.

Divock Origi on.

Daniel Sturridge
Reuters

Liverpool 3-0 Middlesbrough

Middlesbrough deserve at least a goal really.

Adam Forshaw screws a volley just wide after being fed in by an Alvaro Negredo flick.

SUBSTITUTIONS

Liverpool 3-0 Middlesbrough

After Middlesbrough introduce Alvaro Negredo and former Liverpool defender Daniel Ayala, Liverpool make a sentimental change.

Lucas Leiva - the hosts' longest serving player - comes on to make probably his final appearance.

Off heads Robert Firmino.

Lucas Leiva
Reuters

Liverpool 3-0 Middlesbrough

Daniel Sturridge fixes Grant Leadbitter with a stepover and sends a long-range effort whistling just wide.

Might this be his final appearance in a Liverpool shirt? Fit and firing, he undoubtedly adds an extra dimension in attack.

Liverpool 3-0 Middlesbrough

More delicious build-up without the final flourish from Liverpool as Georginio Wijnaldum and Roberto Firmino zap passes between each other and then the latter crosses to the former with a little no-look clip.

Wijnaldum swipes a foot at his volley but the ball spins harmlessly wide.

Liverpool 3-0 Middlesbrough

Liverpool are trying to post a late entry into their goal of the season showreel.

Philippe Coutinho springs Roberto Firmino with a ridiculous outside-of-the-foot flick, but his compatriot's lay-off for Gini Wijnaldum is a touch too far with the goal beckoning.

It would have been a postcard-perfect move though...

GOAL - Watford 0-5 Man City

Gabriel Jesus

Gabriel Jesus
Getty Images

It doesn't matter.

Gabriel Jesus adds the fifth - and it is Sergio Aguero who provides it.

Aguero turns on the gas down the right, looking up to intelligently pull back to the young Brazilian.

He gets a touch of luck with a dodgy first touch, then brilliantly pokes in over a jumping Watford defender on the line.

Gabriel Jesus
PA

Liverpool 3-0 Middlesbrough

The goals are only flowing one way at Vicarage Road...

Liverpool 3-0 Middlesbrough

It has all gone a little end-of term basketball.

Chances at either end with Adam Forshaw denied by a fingertip stop from Simon Mignolet before Philippe Coutinho bullets a low effort just wide.

The party has started already though.

The action is just the soundtrack.

Jurgen Klopp
Reuters

GOAL - Liverpool 3-0 Middlesbrough

Adam Lallana

Fire up the theme music, that is surely Champions League nights back at Anfield.

From a Middlesbrough corner, the Reds break at speed and in number.

After an initially disappointing cross, the ball breaks back to Adam Lallana who saunters through and slots past Brad Guzan.

Adam Lallana
Reuters

Liverpool 2-0 Middlesbrough

And Roberto Firmino comes close to a third!

The Brazilian controls on his chest and swats a volley goalwards from 12 yards out.

It was a sweet connection, but straight into a defender's chest.

That was zeroed in on the back of the net if not.

GOAL - Liverpool 2-0 Middlesbrough

Philippe Coutinho

And the collective frown is finally turning around at Anfield.

Philippe Coutinho lines up his effort and sends a low skidding effort round the wall and inside Brad Guzan's far post.

The keeper was unsighted, but down slowly anyway.

The whole atmosphere has lifted.

Liverpool celebrate
Reuters

Liverpool 1-0 Middlesbrough#

Adam Clayton blunders in on Daniel Sturridge. Free-kick.

And this is well within the Phiippe Coutinho zone.

Twenty-five yards out or so and the Brazilian with first dibs...

Liverpool 1-0 Middlesbrough

An early coming together between Emre Can and Rudi Gestede in the Liverpool box.

The German midfielder has come off worse, but a quick squeeze of the magic sponge and he is ready to go.

KICK-OFF

Liverpool 1-0 Middlesbrough

And we are back under way.

Liverpool are 45 goalless minutes away from a Champions League return.

But with their defence and record of conceding late goals, you wouldn't bet on it.

They might just need to score more.

As it stands

Liverpool into the Champions League

.
.

Get Involved

#bbcfootball

Nick: FINALLY!!! Great finish from Gini! Liverpool needed that because they've looked clueless.

Dominic: As an Arsenal fan I couldn't be less interested if we finish fourth - we only ever get as far as the last 16 anyway!

Gyimah: That goal from Gini feels like a Euro million jackpot for all Liverpool fans.

HALF-TIME

Liverpool 1-0 Middlesbrough

'Klopp's glasses are off'

Liverpool 1-0 Middlesbrough

Martin Keown

Former Arsenal defender on Football Focus

Massive. Absolutely Massive. Klopp's glasses may have come off. It was a lovely move. Wijnaldum makes a lovely move and smashes it into the near post. So much power in it.

GOAL - Liverpool 1-0 Middlesbrough

Gini Wijnaldum (45 mins)

Relief rips around Anfield.

Gini Wijnaldum bursts into the box, takes a touch to steady himself and then lets rip with an absolute blockbuster.

It flashes past Brad Guzan and inside his near post before the Boro keeper has time to flinch.

Jurgen Klopp is bent double with relief, clenching both fists and every facial muscle he has.

Gini Wijnaldum
Reuters

INJURY TIME

Liverpool 0-0 Middlesbrough

There is one extra minute to play at the end of the first half...

GOAL - Watford 0-4 Man City

Fernandinho

Fernandinho
Reuters

If Walter Mazzarri hadn't already been sacked then he would have been fired at half-time. This is a shambles.

But...City have been majestic. Fernandinho wriggles through some weak challenges in the home penalty area, keeping his balance - and his head - to fire in low from six yards.

City have decided to leave the final-day drama to Liverpool and Arsenal.

Fernandinho
Reuters

Liverpool 0-0 Middlesbrough

Can't Liverpool set up some sort of goal loan from Manchester City?

Pep's side are slaughtering their Vicarage Road hosts.

Liverpool 0-0 Middlesbrough

The half is meandering towards a close.

Just a quick review of the options on Jurgen Klopp's bench shows only Marko Grujic and Divock Origi as offering extra attacking edge.

Liverpool 0-0 Middlesbrough

The worrying thing for Liverpool is that they are also looking flaky at the back...

Their defence is almost picked apart by a quick exchange of passes between Patrick Bamford and Adam Forshaw before Simon Mignolet gets only a wobbly punch on the resulting corner.

GOAL - Watford 0-3 Man City

Sergio Aguero

Sergio Aguero
Reuters

Well this is getting embarrassing for Watford.

Manchester City don't care. They are assured of Champions League football next season. There, we have said it.

Sergio Aguero drills in his second of the afternoon after another lightning quick City counter. David Silva sets Leroy Sane galloping down the left flank, the young German cutting the ball back to Aguero who converts from around the penalty spot.

Over to Liverpool and Arsenal to scrap it out for fourth then...

Sergio Aguero
Getty Images

Liverpool 0-0 Middlesbrough

No such writer's block from City...

Liverpool 0-0 Middlesbrough

Middlesbrough are not just battening down the hatches and hiding out behind two banks of five.

They are committing men forward and James Milner has to hustle back quickly to get ahead of Adam Forshaw on the counter.

That willingness to attack is creating space at the other end. Adam Lallana shoots straight at Brad Guzan from 20 yards when there were other, better, options.

Liverpool 0-0 Middlesbrough

Daniel Sturridge's first sight of goal as he turns, feints and fires from 15 yards out.

The ball streaks a foot wide, Jurgen Klopp spins in frustration before exhorting more noise from the home fans.

Is there something building here?

As it stands

Arsenal fourth

.
.

Liverpool - you need a goal!

Liverpool 0-0 Middlesbrough

Unsurprisingly Philippe Coutinho is Liverpool's man most likely.

The Brazilian whips a shot off his instep and wide from 20 yards.

None of the home fans inside Anfield are going to begrudge him taking up every shooting chance he gets.

Liverpool 0-0 Middlesbrough

Liverpool are out of the top four as it stands.

You don't need to be a psychologist to read the body language in the stands.

Some supporters are cradling head and nibbling nails.

Still an hour to go.

GOAL - Arsenal 2-0 Everton

Alexis Sanchez

The 10 men are 2-0 up!

It's a bizarre, bizarre goal, with Everton playing statues in their own box. An Alexis Sanchez shot is defleted, Danny Welbeck collects the ball near the six-yard box and apparently has some sort of invisible force-field around him. All the time in the world to square for Sanchez, who taps in.

Sanchez scores the second goal
Reuters

Liverpool 0-0 Middlesbrough

News incoming from the Emirates....

Liverpool 0-0 Middlesbrough

Joel Matip and Daniel Sturridge misplace passes as they attempt to pick apart the densely packed Boro ranks.