GREAT news for people who like games of football. There’s another one in February and one last trip to The Boleyn before they bulldoze another piece of our national game’s history.
A much-weakened Liverpool grew into the game well and probably did enough to win, without you quite coming away scratching your head how they didn’t. For some their stock has risen slightly. For others it should be clear why they are where they are. But for now, some scores.
Simon Mignolet: 5
Ah, Simon. On a quiet night for you I’ve probably got to give you a five for dropping a throw in. Also took far too long to get it up the pitch at the end. Some nifty feet to deal with a corner though. Slide tackles are an underrated piece of the goalkeeper’s armour.
Nathaniel Clyne: 8
Thought he was great. Attacked with purpose and as solid as Robbo’s ma at the back. Was terrific for the Allen chance.
Brad Smith: 5
Tougher night for Brad. They got at him down the right, and we didn’t see much of his fantastic delivery either. Scuffed his big chance in front of goal when he might have been better off rolling it across for Benteke.
Steven Caulker: 7
Couple of shaky moments on the ball but can largely be pleased with himself. Glad he finally got his start. Heads it. Deals with crosses. Go ‘ed, lid.
Dejan Lovren: 6.5
Loses some points for completely mis-judging a cross first half. Recovered well, but that really should have been a goal.
Kevin Stewart: 7
Exposing the myth of defensive midfield. Stand there. Pass 10 yards either side. Head the odd loose ball. They’re all fucking frauds. That Alex Song gets about 80 grand a week for what Kevin Stewart did today. Probably shouldn’t shoot though.
Cameron Brannagan: 7
Best performance for the first team. Used the ball sensibly and intelligently and got about the pitch well, too. Nearly had a goal. Well not that nearly.
Joe Allen: 7
Felt sorry for him. Waits all that time for a start and we stick him left wing. Battled well though, and makes life easier for his mates.
Jordon Ibe: 5
On The Pink, I mentioned that he needs to be out-performing the young lads and Jacko pointed out he’s younger than most of the young lads. We forget. By any judgement he was disappointing today.
Joao Teixeira: 6
I can see the nice things people say he does, but sometimes he needs to realise you can get it and give it, or play a simple ball inside. I know he is keen to impress, but it doesn’t have to all be mazy runs and through balls. But don’t want to seem to harsh, even though he does my head in. Has some good moments.
Christian Benteke: 5
The senior man. The second most expensive player in the history of Liverpool FC. Has to impose himself somehow. Didn’t. Took one shot early which had the mark of a striker.
Sheyi Ojo: 7
He got onto the fact he was well quicker than them, even if his team mates didn’t.
Jerome Sinclair: n/a
Ran a bit.
Jose Enrique: n/a
What the fuck was that all about??!!!???!!!!!