Watford 3 Liverpool 3: Match Ratings

WATFORD, ENGLAND - Saturday, August 12, 2017: Liverpool's goalkeeper Simon Mignolet looks dejected as Watford score the opening goal during the FA Premier League match between Watford and Liverpool at Vicarage Road. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

NEW season, same old heart attacks, fear, excitement, joy and crushing disappointment. Thanks a lot for coming back Redmen. I was just starting to become a normal human being again.

That was poor from Liverpool. Whether it had anything to do with the selfish acts of Philippe Coutinho 24 hours earlier is anyone’s guess. It can’t be used as an excuse but certainly wouldn’t have helped.

So here are the match ratings. Chances are you’ll disagree with most of them. Chances are I will myself. These numbers fluctuated massively across the 90, and I somehow landed on these:

Simon Mignolet: 5

Confirmed as first choice by Jürgen Klopp, which unfortunately seems to have turned him into pre-2017 Mignolet again. Flapped at crosses, put a free kick straight into touch, almost collided with his own defenders more than once and whether they were his fault or not, conceded three goals. Needs to find that confidence he had towards the end of last season soon.

Trent Alexander-Arnold: 6

Trying not to give him a more generous score just because he’s young but can’t help but give him the benefit of the doubt. Made mistakes in the first half like everyone, was caught out of position for the move that lead to the first, managed to set up their second by kicking it against Joel Matip, but was much better second half and his deliveries were excellent. Not sure why he came off at the end, and probably wouldn’t have conceded the needless free kick Joe Gomez did that ultimately led to their third.

Joel Matip: 4

I like Matip, but that was possibly his worst performance in a red shirt. Not physical enough in challenges, allowed himself to be bullied by Stefano Okaka, gave the ball away time and again, went up field seemingly at random and put a simple header against the crossbar to win it. There’s a time and a place for playing calmly, and today wasn’t it.

WATFORD, ENGLAND - Saturday, August 12, 2017: Liverpool's Joel Matip and Watford's Stefano Okaka during the FA Premier League match between Watford and Liverpool at Vicarage Road. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Dejan Lovren: 5

Was a strange game for him. Did some things really well and some not so well, very typical actually then of Dejan’s career at Liverpool. Always seems to be making last-ditch tackles rather than intelligent ones, and opposed to his partner, plays far too panicky at times. Him and Alberto Moreno on the left-hand side of the defence is enough to make anyone’s heart stop.

Alberto Moreno: 5

The greatest comeback since Lazarus (who was a shit left back) but while he did some good things, there were still the usual daft challenges that left him out of position, including for the second goal. Jordan Henderson should have gone with Tom Cleverley but Moreno’s lunge left all that space for the former Everton midfielder. Sure some will say he deserves even lower, but he did mostly do fine, including in the build up to Sadio Mane’s goal.

Jordan Henderson: 5

Feel a bit sorry for the captain but he looked a million miles off the pace, as if he hasn’t played competitive football for several months. As with many he perked up in the second half, but offered little protection to the back four, his passing was way off and his first touch incredibly loose. It will return, but a stuttering start to life back in the starting 11 for Hendo.

WATFORD, ENGLAND - Saturday, August 12, 2017: Liverpool's captain Jordan Henderson applauds the travelling supporters after the 3-3 draw during the FA Premier League match between Watford and Liverpool at Vicarage Road. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Emre Can: 6

On the ground where he ended the conversation for goal of the season last year, Can failed to live up to those levels again. Seemed to get outmuscled too easily, and then only used his strength to concede sloppy free kicks. Showed some nice touches but also some not so nice ones. Should have spent more time helping a struggling Henderson, but does get a bonus point for his assist for Mane.

Gini Wijnaldum: 4

That might seem harsh, but football games are decided in moments, and Gini failed in two crucial ones. Missed a very simple chance to put the game to bed when he sliced wide from Mane’s lay off, and then put in the most pathetic attempt to head away a corner that Watford then equalised from. I also generally thought he was doing his usual disappearing act when the game was tough. Must do a lot better.

Sadio Mane: 8

I felt really sorry for Sadio. Was the only one who wasn’t playing as if someone had just killed his dog in the first half, then was the catalyst for several attacks in the second. Took his goal beautifully, and on another day with better players around him he could have done so much more. Seems to enjoy coming off the left, which bodes well. Deserved to win the game, even if no-one else did.

WATFORD, ENGLAND - Saturday, August 12, 2017: Liverpool's Sadio Mane celebrates scoring the first equalising goal during the FA Premier League match between Watford and Liverpool at Vicarage Road. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Mohamed Salah: 6

Was frankly shocked to see Sky give him the man of the match award, but that was presumably based on his goal and winning the penalty. His pace and movement caused lots of problems for Watford, but his final ball was criminal. If he’d finished better or picked better options he could have scored or assisted another three for The Reds. I’m sure it will come but I was left more frustrated than impressed by the former Roma speedster.

Roberto Firmino: 7

Felt a bit sorry for Bobby as he was mostly getting marked out of the game in the first half and having to come back into midfield to see any of the ball. Did show some nice touches though, took a superb penalty and made a great run for the third, but there were moments where you wondered if it’s the best thing having him play upfront against the dross (no offence, Watford). Could he not play an advanced midfield role behind a more conventional striker in those games?


Divock Origi: N/A

James Milner: N/A

Joe Gomez: N/A

But do have to query why he came on when he did. Trent was managing fine, then Gomez comes on cold, gets done by the winger and commits a silly foul that eventually led to the equaliser.

Up the familiarly frustrating Reds.

READ: Watford 3 Liverpool 3: The Final Whistle

READ: Watford 3 Liverpool 3: Match Review

LISTEN: Watford 3 Liverpool 3: The Post-Match Show

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  1. Robbie Ryan

    What did David Segar do wrong to get the Match Ratings gig? Harsh

  2. Thought you should have given Origi a rating.
    Mine wouldn’t be pretty.

    • Yeah, mine too. I have lost it with hin, clueless and sooo niave. Same goes for Gomez, who is the polar opposite of the player that plugged our left side pre-injury. Rabbit in the headlights when he came on into a shambolic defensive unit. Trent had stood off that no-mark wide man all game and consequently stopped the one-trick pony from turning and running into him to get the free-welly. Joe, rabbit like, climbs all over his back at the first oppo and bingo, our sh*t defense gets what it deserves. We appear to have one functioning player in the whole back line at present, the kid. Bin the rest of them, including Gomez and start again Boss. please!

  3. Tough first game to rate Dave. New season, but still it remains Groundhog Day with this mob. Is it even possible to try to explain how we can consistently concede the type of goals we do? I mean, how many weird deflected goals can a team concede?
    As for the players, it’s the same old song. The finger can be pointed at a lineup of 3 or 4, but I’ll just point one out that no one seems to be mentioning. If Mignolet catches the looping header that comes into him after the Gomez free kick, instead of trying to punch it, we are out with the 3 points.

  4. Buy some players that can defend please! Day one of the season and we are already 2 points off the top. If we don’t make it past Hoffenheim I’m going to lose my $h:+.

  5. Spot on with the ratings. But I think they did alright considering what happened yesterday, and also since they conceded so early from a set piece. It looked like the game was played in their heads rather than on the pitch. Our defending aside, I’m not looking forward to dropping points because of shit linesmen again this season though.

  6. What’s Jurgen’s rating?

  7. First time posting. These are my takeaways from the game and from the past.

    Mignolet – has not learned that when we are ahead, we don’t need to hurry the ball out because the way we defend, our players are all out of place and trying to catch their bearings. He did this multiple times today and put unnecessary pressure and risk which catches up soon enough.

    Lovren – if you are not ever going to win the ball by being all over the big attacker, back off and let him have the ball and then pounce on it. Big attackers like that rarely have trapping skills that will kill the ball at their feet. By being all over the attacker, he is out of position and creates a ton of space to exploit once he is turned.

    Game management – why can’t we coach game management or tactics into our players. Don’t they watch their own game to see what is glaringly obvious. If we are with 10 mins to go, they need to study how long the ball will be in play during those 10 minutes. Counting our own possession, the time the ball is out, the time we can legally waste, Watford should have very limited time on the ball.

    Why did our forwards not attack Yonus Kaboul’s side on purpose since he could not run anymore, that might have taken out of the game and we stood a better chance to control possession.

    I know all this is armchair quarterbacking after the fact, but surely little things like this must have been seen by others. I don’t know the X’s and O’s but I can see this.

    Hope this doesn’t offend anyone. Just my weekly frustrations watching Liverpool from afar and supporting them for the last 35 years.

    • On the flip to your point about Mignolet, he also got booked for timewasting, so…

    • Spot on. It is about Game Management. Once we were finally 3-2 up, the game should have been killed. Instead the pace and intensity went up a notch and far too many chances at both ends.

  8. Jurgen’s ratings 2/10.

    Didn’t buy defenders, did not improve on defense tactics and continues to make poor substitutions.

    The 2 is for the hugs and smiles.

  9. I understand. I meant he can slow walk it before the ball is set. He always seems to run and get the ball. I think once the ball is set, then you can’t be wasting too much time. In any case, I just wish they learn the little things here and there. When Chelsea beat Liverpool in 2014, they did that shit the whole game and it completely messed our approach and mind.

  10. Generous for Henderson – offered nothing at all. Having to play Can, Wjnaldum and Henderson is asking for trouble. One of them is enough and my one wouldn’t be our uninspiring captain. It’s unfortunate to have Lallana & Coutinho injured at the same time but having to play these three smacks of negligence.

  11. Bald bobbie

    Glad I’m at this wedding…..

  12. I want to see Danny Ward. Mignolet should have a very short leash. I don’t trust Karius at all. To me Emre Can is a world class Central Defender, and a Middle of the Road central midfielder. He should be moved back in place of Lovren. Salah was great going forward mediocre on defense.
    Jurgen Klopp gets 95% of the blame here for subbing Trent and for failures on set pieces.

    • Hi Josh agree with you on Ward, though I feel Ward should play in games against teams like Watford. For some reason I think Ward would command his defense better.

      Migs or Karius for other games.

      • Hi Sash. Good to see you and other usually names here again.

        In my opinion, I would still pick Mig as the first option and Ward as 2nd choice (because he was injured most of pretty season). I share the sentiment of many Reds about not really trusting Karius somehow.

        I believe Mig will be alright. The three goals conceded against Watford were really the fault of defenders in my opinion (and some other elementary mistakes of Gini, Hendo and Can)

        We’ll be alright. Cheers

  13. You lads are in trouble, even with Lallana fit. I worry about your visit to OT this season. And for the love of Graeme Souness’s bubble perm, hold on to Coutinho.

  14. Truly forgettable stuff. I was worried as soon as I saw the mf 3. I could not see where the dominance was going to come from. If Klopp says he is satisfied with this squad then he either sets his bar too low or is taking us for fools.

  15. Seems unfair to judge Wijnaldum on key moments, but not Salah. Was quiet at times, but was also directly responsible for two goals. I’ll take those “quiet” games all year. Although I have a feeling he will be turning the volume up from time to time.

  16. Can we start seeing ratings for Klopp too from now on? I think he’s also part of the team performance and once again showed himself to be a bit nieve. Bringing on Origi instead of Solanke?! Then brings on Gomez in a game where Watfords backs were up instead of another offensive player?! Origi is a poor mans Solanke for me. The young guy, again from Chelsea, had shown vastly more composure in his few minites than I’ve seen from Origi, who come to think of it is a poor mans Heskey!!! Gomez is rusty, Gomez has been injured for a long period. We needed more freshness in attack. Time and time again, substitutions are wrong!!! Brings them on late in the game. No talking between the players, no leaders across the pitch. No Robertson!!! We all thought Moreno had played his last game. If Klopp is trying to gets suitors for Moreno, he’s not gonna get any!! We’re gonna lose out on VVD due to LFC arrogance and immaturity. But even that said, VVD s having a lot of plaudits laid at his feet when it takes 11 players to win a game and NOT 1!! We are now going into Klopps second full season and I fear that were going to be short once again. I know it’s one game, but as with Arsenal supporters, we can see the same issues happening time and again!! As with Arsene Wenger he controls his back room staff. Maybe the same could be said of Klopp?? Are his assistants leaders or followers?? Do they question his decisions?? I’d be very keen to know. Our players look to slight in frame, which would have worked In Germany, but not in England where Lukaku is the shit of a brick shit house!! Matip too small, Lovren too small, Can too small, Gomez supposedly too ‘BIG’ when coming back from injury. Maybe that’s what we need. Someone built who can challenge like for like. I fear us playing Manure and Chelsea and other teams with big players as we’re just not gonna win those battles.

  17. I really enjoyed Mane’s performance. Disappointed with Salah at times but he’s off the mark.
    I can’t decide on Can’s performance. He messed around with a back heel before their second goal but played Mane in for the equalizer.
    Overall, a feeling of frustration and i don’t think we done enough to deserve to win.

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