WASN’T expecting that! Liverpool came out of the blocks with some sublime attacking play and took the game to the rightful league leaders. But we really should have been able to cope a bit better with what they had to throw back in return, regardless of the patched-up nature of the defence.
I like these games, though. Think you learn more against top opposition — who you can take forward, and who you might have to leave behind. Jürgen Klopp will know more about his players than he did at 7pm. And he has one more point.
Quick one, though. If Brendan “doesn’t play players in their right position” Rodgers had played a 4-4-2 with James Milner left wing, and Adam Lallana and Roberto Firmino up front, and then brought on an on-loan defender, already ahead of Tiago “football managers hate me, but the internet loves me” Ilori and played him up front, while dropping to ninth in the table…well imagine the fume.
SIMON MIGNOLET: 2
Generously given two for the couple of decent things he did in the game. Five years. Five. Years. Makes you think the fans should get to sell one player every summer. We’d make some mistakes, but I wouldn’t have to pay to watch Simon Mignolet next season. So I’d take it.
NATHANIEL CLYNE: 6
Some nice build-up play with Ibe early on, and nice movement and a cross that is cleared off the line. You still want a bit more from him, but solid enough.
KOLO TOURE: 5
One terrific tackle on Theo Walcott on the break that gets him at least three of those points. Tried his best, but this level seems too high for his ageing legs now.
MAMADOU SAKHO: 4
Tends to struggle with his passing when he comes back from injury, and tonight was no exception. Some of his decision making left a lot to be desired, too. To be fair though, both centre halves were pretty good in one-on-one battles.
ALBERTO MORENO: 4
I want to like Moreno, but he makes it tricky. Basic with the ball in the final third and too often beaten back post on crosses. They seemed to get a lot of joy down his side, too. Although some of their movement was fantastic. Not sure who told him he could take free kicks. Maybe he nails them in training.
EMRE CAN: 7
Emre, Emre, Emre. Started like a Rolls Royce, was bossing everything and looked like the complete midfielder. Then his passing went astray and he still has that look of disbelief on his face when he’s standing with the ball at his feet and the opposition dare to nip in and take it off him. Gets subbed for a sensible option, which should always be a concern.
JORDAN HENDERSON: 8
We look so much better with him in the team. Our best passer. Best crosser. Only one who looks to run a game for long periods. Terrific for our second. Mad how some don’t rate him.
JORDON IBE: 5
Started with purpose, but when his first few dribbles didn’t come off, he seemed to go into his shell. Infuriating when he ran into their defender and then went down holding his face while they counter attacked. Wisely gave up at taking corners.
JAMES MILNER: 6.5
Probably did all he could in an unfamiliar position. Actually has a very good delivery with his wrong foot, and his work rate is always there.
ROBERTO FIRMINO: 9
Terrific stuff. He’s a forward isn’t he? If you’re nitpicking you say he should probably score the one that hits the bar. But then you remember who plays on his team in goal, and it just seems daft.
ADAM LALLANA: 6
Think these games suit him more. Maybe he can be our Ji Sung Park. Without the big goals, obviously.
CHRISTIAN BENTEKE: 6
Link-up play was good, and he did really well for the goal.
JOE ALLEN: 7
Yes, lad. Made up for him. Good option, great finish.
STEVEN CAULKER: 5
Bet he didn’t think he’d be playing up front for Liverpool last week.
Thought Can had a bit off a horrorshow tbh, not sure why he’s constantly rated so high. The concern isn’t just that he gives the ball away at some inopportune times, its *where* he gives it away that is concerning. But hey, enough of the negativity, was a well fought draw, that probably should have been a W.
Thought he bossed it first half then looked completely knackered second. You’re not the first person who said he was mostly poor though so I’ve started to question myself. He was Charlie Adam-level fucked late on and needed hooking earlier than he eventually was tbf. And anyone who doesn’t like Joe Allen is a bizzy imo.
Yeah, this. Can looked immense first-half, I thought, but he was spent by 55. Hope it’s just a case of him adjusting because there is a terrific player in there I reckon. And let’s face it, it was pretty mental out there for large parts even by EPL standards.
Henderson Mom, Firmino close second.
Klopp is not going to put up with the defensive shite much longer.
”With Ilori not even mentioned by Klopp when he listed his available central defenders on Monday, Benteke consigned to the bench for 66 minutes and Bogdan out of the frame, the manager’s purge is under way quicker than he is letting on”.
Since you so politely asked me to get back to you on matters of football knowledge, Brownie lad, still think there’s a’ player in there’ re Ilori ?
Herr Klopp seems to think otherwise.
Think you need to re-watch the game.
Cracking match, little tough on Moreno (although, no more free kicks lad), Henderson is our life blood – only player who makes us tick, Can – fantastic bull-in-a-china shop he is.
Can’t wrap my head around a deal for Migs… The Welsh Xavi with a little Neil Mellor impersonation, a draw with our injuries against the leaders in smash and grab fashion, I’ll take it.
The joeallen finish reminded me more of Benayoun’s late equaliser in the 2009 4-4 against these the way he shaped up and his timing running onto it.
Thought Moreno had one of his brain dead games, Ibe looked like he did earlier in the season when he came on away at Arsenal shorn of confidence, Sakho’s legs weren’t working like at Watford again. Couldn’t agree more with you on Henderson. Almost certainly a lazy comparison but he reminds me of Gerrard at his age but obviously without the best in the world ability; just a really, really good footballer and he’s *everywhere*.
I don’t want to lash a big massive comment out there on the keeper that I might regret it but… Yeah… No. I’m sure Simon Mignolet is a really nice man but that’ll do now.
After the previous few weeks, I started to think games like this evening’s had gone for this season.
This feels like a win, we matched them and only lost to 2 very good goals and another fluke
Man Utd on Sunday with Clyne suspended will be difficult but they won’t know whether to attack or defend and break.
Maybe Can needs a rest and Sakho a needs games as both were awful
Thought Can was very good first half but did tire quickly. Agree with Mike above that when he does lose it – as all players do at some times – it tends to be in really dodgy areas of the pitch. But he has the tools and will get better and better, for sure.
Moreno was better than a 4, imo. Clyne is better defensively but I don’t think the problem down our flanks tonight, more through the middle and what was happening just in front of our centre-halves. Moreno put in some shift and had the better of Bellerin – the quickest f-b in the country – all night.
Agree Hendo the MotM.
Results pretty much went for us tonight, too. Beat the Mancs on Sunday and we’re in the mix.
And ask me who just got a ticket for Sunday? Go on, ask me!
Firmino was MOTM
Yep. It turned out to be a game that cried out Lucas’s savvy. All the damage was done in the areas of the pitch he patrols. But who do you sacrifice? (One of Ibe/Lallana for me against the top teams)
Yeah, I think Lucas would have given both centre halves some of the protection they badly needed, possibly tracked Ramsey’s runs and allowed Henderson to join more.
somehow, Lucas plays best at the base of 442 diamond with two runners ahead of him. but if he starts along side Hendo in a flat 4, he might not be fast enough or powerful/versitile enough to go box to box (taking turn).
But at least we now have Hendo, Can, Lucas, Milner and Allen who can take turn in the central areas.
MU may use the same tactic as last year when Fellini was assigned to bully Can. Then we will definitely need Lucas to protect our backline on Sunday.
Agreed. Lucas behind Hendo and Can.
Spot on, Paulo and Tom.
Love these ratings Gibbo, always a boss read. You obviously see the game very similar to me. Patched up defence, dodgy keeper but we looked great going forwards, roll on the future, Klopp will get us playing.#believe
What’s with the floating balls on corners? We are terrible at those! Can’t we whip em in like, with pace and accuracy like Gerrard used to? Half the time we fail to clear the first man or it’s floated in the air and hangs for so long, someone has enough time to come and clear it. Makes it that much harder for someone trying to head it in too.
fact is we dont have anybody that can whip them in like stevie did
hendo is the closest yet he’s not taking any
so we are left with floaters from ibe, lallana, milner, cout ..
was happy we mixed it up last night, with moreno coming for a couple of short ones. if only his delivery was better
Serious question. How hard would it be to coach someone from being a floater to a whipper?
Some of these ratings are strange, as usual.
But you could at least get the basics right.
We played 4231, not 442.
Milner played a ton of games on the left for City and has played there for every club he’s played for and for England so “unfamiliar position” is just rubbish.
And it’s common knowledge that Ilori isn’t fit enough to play and is on a training program. He had to play against Exeter because of a lack of options. But you had to get your pathetic dig in didn’t you?
We played 442. I was there. I saw it. It was 442. They take a goal kick and we have a line of 4. Another line of 4 and a line of 2. That was the case till Benteke came on.
Haha we played 4-4-2 for ages you mad bastard
Literally stopped when he took Milner off
Speaking of having to get a dig in.
Beaten on near post twice is a disgrace. Thought Kolo was better than a 5, your Moreno marks are getting more realistic. That lad drives me mad, caught out of position so often, under instruction presumably, but CBA getting back.
Gibbo lad these are shite. Craig Hannan, what a man. Up the popworld
Givbo, i find your constant bagging of Mignolet unacceptable!…. its simply not harsh enough! Seriouly… hes rubbish…
Five years. My brain hurts like a warehouse.
Imagine us trying to deal with that cunt Fellaini on the weekend.
Mignolet has got every type of mistake in his locker.
Bentekes positioning urks me at times whilst i watch the game on tv. He seems to fancy his wingers/defenders to cross ball back towards the edge of the penalty box rather than making his way anywhere near the 6 yard area to really threaten the their goal. Definitely happy to see Firmino found his shooting boots today.
There’s a YouTube video of his 49 goals for Villa. It’s definitely the way he plays. He always always drops back to the penalty spot when his winger is bombing down the byline.
It was very interesting how even his headed goals tended to be outside the 6-yard box.
I think he’s a decent player but completely unsuited to how we play. Maybe with a fox-in-the-box partner he’d be more effective.
then we tweak the way we play slightly to make it suitable for Benteke. We are talking small changes. this is what a manager who earns 7m pounds a year does.
Should Jurgen sacrifice his footballing philosophy to accommodate one player who refuses/can’t adapt his game?
you don’t need to sacrifice a whole philosophy to fit in a different final pass. Our wides are in possession – look to pull it back rather than across the face. Its that simple. the other 99% of the game stays as it is.
It’s that simple on a computer perhaps. In the real world, on the other hand, it gets a little more complex than that. The positioning and runs of everyone changes relative to the type of pass made. Consequently, opposition players also reacts to our own movements. Defensive lines goes higher, forcing opposition forwards to drop higher, forcing your “wides” into isolation.
Wait there are people out there that don’t rate Hendo!??
What the hell does Joe Allen have to do to get a start? Two dead brilliant assists (Southampton and Stoke) plus a crunch time goal taken with perfect composure, besides being boss generally in the middle of the park. If that isn’t meritocracy banging at the door, I don’t know what is.
No way should Millie be starting ahead of him, and at bare minimum he should have come on much sooner for Can (who does my head in generally, but started brightly). And somebody needs to get Ibe to Dr. Steve Peters to work out his inner chimp.
No problem with the ratings.
I thought it was pretty clear that Klopp only put Caulker on as a last-minute gamble, as someone who might be able to win a header in the area. Just a total roll of the dice when we needed a goal.
Then after we scored it looked to me like he was man-marking Giroud for that final minute. And I mean like a 1956 version of man-marking – just basically following him wherever he went.
It was a gamble but a pretty clever one, It meant Koscielny and Mertesacker couldn’t double up on Benteke on every high ball. In fact if you look at Allens goal, Benteke wins the header so much easier because Mertesacker is pre-occupied with Caulker.
Still, something very kitchen sink about it all!
Five Years. That’s What We’ve Got. Five Years. My Brain Hurts a Lot.
Y’know a good shot-stopper would have stopped that first shot. So what are we left with? Five years…..
Let’s hope we’re just protecting his resale value.
I know he’s young but i’m getting fed up with Jordon Ibe, especially in this formation.
He seems to have a brain freeze or just stops and watches play whenever the ball gets towards the box when he’s not involved. He just stands near the right touch line all on his own. Their left back has obviously let him be and he just stands there in miles of space, miles from their goal. He’s pointless.
I’d convert him to a right back. Showed his best at right wing back under Rodgers when coming from deep. Most team sit deep and will continue to do that. Clyne for the good teams, Ibe for the fodder.
To be honest haven’t got a problem with Mignolet getting a 5 year deal as long as we don’t see him much in those 5 years
It just doesn’t matter how average captain Sideways-on-the-halfline plays. He’ll get an 8 in places like this and the Echo. He was by no means whatsoever behind the second. Rather, he won two lucky 50-50 ball and the ball bounced our way.
Sakho, doesn’t matter how good he play, how he’s being letting down by a stale and static midfield offering next to no alternative when trying to play it deep. Arguably one of the best passing CB’s in the competition but not rated by people who rate and hail our joke for a captain. Says it all really.
No wonder we’re going nowhere with such a crappy center midfield.
Martinmarx, I reckon you need to turn it in.
Unless you thought Milner was © or something?
I actually agree with you on Sakho but Henderson was sound tonight and we a different, better, team with him playing
I’m a big fan of Sakho but his form hasn’t been great since his knee injury. His passing accuracy has dropped big time from the 94%+ he used to register. Maybe (hopefully) he just needs a little more time to get back from his injuries.
On Hendo, I don’t get the unconditional love showered upon him (an 8 seems generous), but we are a better team when he’s playing.
What planet are you on? He gave the ball away the least of all players last night. Just 5 times. Get your facts right next time.
I accept fans have their own opinion on players. But “average captain Sideways-on-the-halfline”?!. Madness. He makes the midfield tick.
To use the old Shankly quote (The Anfield Wrap love this one) – “A football team is like a piano. You need eight men to carry it and three who can play the damn thing.” Henderson seems to do enough carrying for at least 2 or 3 men. He even occasionally has a tinker himself when he’s playing higher up the field. 8 is about right, not sure who played better last tonight other than Firmino (oh, and this is a Henderson returning from a pretty lengthy injury)
Entertaining stuff. Great to see a brace from firmino.. Should do him good going forward. Love how toure can actually hold, move and pass the ball with some calm. Could he not teach the other two some of that?
Don’t understand the dig against the lack of fume after the switch to 442. Are you trying to defend Rodgers here? Anyway, weren’t we crying out for Rodgers to play 2 up top with a diamond 4? It was a sensible last throw of the dice with Caulker, and guess what, it worked!
Think the main reason that Ibe goes backwards in a game is that the first mistake that he makes, he’s got the entire Main Stand telling him that he’s f***ing shite. This season’s whipping boy. Like Sterling before him and Hendo and Lucas and that Carra lad who half the crowd thought was shite in his first season. Do you think there’s a chance that we’ll ever learn any sodding patience with these lads?
Mignolet though? That contract’s clearly some Bowie themed practical joke by Jurgen. (Reckon Klopp’s more of a ‘Width Of A Circle’ man myself)
Ian, Ibe done the same thing 20 times last night and no, the main stand didn’t get on his back straight away, but you know when something isn’t working, you don’t do it again and again and again and again, you try an alternative.
Ibe has potential, but he’s f#cking brain dead
There is a lot that Klopp has done that Rodgers would have been lynched for. There have been some performances (Newcastle, Watford etc.) that Rodgers would have been slaughtered for. But… Klopp has also shown us some highs in the same time (City, Soton etc.). These highs had left Rodgers locker. Hopefully over time Klopp will fix the lows. If not, well at least it is going to be a more fun ride. It is supposed to be fun, right?
Big fan of you and your ratings, John, but I think you’re off the mark here, and it’s mostly the rating of Can to be honest. Two better than Toure? .5 better than Milner? Three better than Moreno?
Emre was indeed very good in the first half but the extent to which he fell off a cliff from the second half whistle was alarming and would drop him to a five for me. I still think we have to carry him – he’s not alone – and I hate carrying players. If they’re scoring goals or doing magical things you can accept it, but when they’re in the middle of the park giving it away every minute or two… you can’t.
On a side note, if Sakho’s the future of our defence as LFC Twitter seems to think – we’re all doomed.
Just ‘re watched the match during lunch break. And I am still quite frustrated with Can giving away loads of balls in dangerous areas during 2nd half. And also Ibe’s off form performance somewhat.
A positive thing is both of them are still developing and They both are under the best coach who can bring them to next level. And I really want both of them to succeed with us, long term.
Mig: I ran out of comments. give him and Bogdan free transfer or whatever.
Overall, all outfield players last night gave 100%. I enjoyed their commitment, never say die spirit. That is a good sign that we will further improve our results once Klopp has time to sort out the defensive side of play.
Oh, look! Gubbins thought Moreno was shit, again. Based on these ratings, Liverpool should have lost 6-3.
Must be nice to get a job based on who your mates mates are rather an actual talent.
Why would you feel the need to post something like that? I am genuinely curious. I assume nobody is forcing you onto this site.
It’s also ridiculous because, correct me if I’m wrong, but this isn’t John’s job.
A cry for help from someone who has no mates.
The rating and description of Moreno’s game last night is so so so perfect. Couldn’t have said any better myself.
I want to like him like seriously and that free kick stuff..MADNESS
Strange comment about Caulker, indeed: Isn’t it the most obvious thing to do, to throw in some aerial supremacy in the dying minutes of a match, more so, if you got no striker available? Really bizarre, questioning this.
Besides, Mignolet is a first class backup keeper to Danny Ward (or whoever), I reckon. So keeping him five years, is quite clever indeed.
Time to give some one else a start over Ibe. He’s had plenty of opportunity and he will again. Give another young’un a go.
Ibe just came back from minor/right hamstring. maybe that was the reason his performance was a bit off last night.
Ojo and Kent maybe ready for last 15 mind or so. But I think they are not quite ready to start. If Phil was fit Ibe would have been an impact Sub last night I think.
Mignolet must just fuck off his useless, this was one game we had to win
Ibe is an absolute dummy in possession, anyone else worried about his lack of “football IQ”?
I do love the ratings Gibbo, but Man Up! No “.5” ratings anymore, give him a 6 or give him a 7.
Also, I think Lallana was closer to a 5.75.
Don’t bother even looking at the ratings any more. Great to see Firmino finding his way round this league now. It’s time to give Ward a chance. Full of confidence and match fit. Get him in for Sunday.
And yet you’re on the page commenting on them! Boss.
Er no, not actually commenting on the ratings, just giving my opinion.
Is it part of the business plan to have a snide pop at anyone who makes a slightly adverse comment? Not sure how that’ll encourage more subscribers really.
No mate, just commenting. Like you.
As far as I can make out the rating that John sticks on here are only semi – serious.
Even if they were serious its only an opinion and means nothing. Opinions are like….
Loved the atmosphere last night, pretty decent for recent times and stood all night!
My prediction for Sunday is Liverpool 3 Man u 1,you can take that to the bank