BEEN given a late call-up to replace Andy for my match ratings debut – go easy on me, Reds. If you are a big Heaton fan then worry not, he’ll be back soon.
A relatively routine 5-0 win for Liverpool against Championship Burton Albion. An ideal result after the disappointment of the weekend. Some positive signs on show for Jürgen Klopp’s men.
Simon Mignolet: 6
Didn’t have too much to do. Looks like he’s trying to show confidence using his feet more, and coming to punch the ball, but still makes me shit it when he does.
Nathaniel Clyne: 8
Had the beating of his man all night and his crossing caused real problems. Was so lively on that right hand side. Him and Sadio Mane on that wing is looking more and more of a mouth-watering prospect.
Joel Matip: 7
Imposing figure at the back. Looks like he likes to pick a pass and isn’t afraid to carry the ball forward, which I like to see. Made a goal line clearance, too.
Dejan Lovren: 6
Made some decent blocks and tackles. Responded well to a more physical strike force, and took a punch to the head from Mignolet well – though Matip probably spared his blushes with a goal line clearance.
James Milner: 6
Still looks a bit uncomfortable at left back and Burton were keen to try and exploit that. His lack of pace, and being naturally right footed, hinders him there. Ironically his moment of the match came as he had drifted to the right, and set up Daniel Sturridge with a nice ball.
Jordan Henderson: 6
Saw a lot of the ball and was generally tidy in possession. Would’ve been relieved to be under much less pressure than at Turf Moor.
Emre Can: 6
Seems the Reds’ best option to play that defensive midfield role that Jordan Henderson struggled with at Burnley. Worryingly taken off after going down injured. Hope it was just a precaution.
Adam Lallana: 6
Carried the ball well to switch from defence to attack, and provided a creative presence before he was subbed. Can still be guilty of taking one too many touches but it’s not an issue in these kind of games.
Sadio Mane: 9
Showed every bit of what Liverpool were missing on Saturday. His movement causes so many problems for defenders and he seemed to be involved in everything. Ran the Burton defence ragged in the first half.
Roberto Firmino: 7
His clever movement made him a menace to the Burton defence, popping up all over the place. Got a goal to show for it.
Divock Origi: 7
Gives us a presence up top when playing with his back to goal, and his movement is good when he faces up. Clever finish for the goal. Worrying that he had to go off late in the game.
Georginio Wijnaldum: 6
Don’t remember him touching the ball loads. He’s got a great smile, though.
Daniel Sturridge: 8
I’m potentially the only man in the world who doesn’t hate the idea of Sturridge on the right, but it’s easy to see how lethal he can be when he is central, and can get in and around the box. His second was a great finish, and he’s finally got a song. What a night!
Kevin Stewart: 6
England’s Kev Stewart. What a bloke.