PLAYER RATINGS: BURNLEY 0-1 LIVERPOOL
Liverpool battled their way to a 1-0 victory at Turf Moor this afternoon. A competitive first half was edged by the Reds as Fabinho poked home from a corner. A drab second half had little to no action as Liverpool moved back to within 9 points of Manchester City with a game in hand. Read on for player ratings from the match:
Alisson – 8.5
Was on his toes all game due to the high line. Swept up lots of balls in behind and came outside his box to deal with a lot of them. Good one on one goalkeeping when Weghorst, and later Cornet, went through. Pounced on Rodriguez’s shot first half. Real life saver today in the swirling conditions.
Alexander-Arnold – 6
Very sloppy today. Didn’t look sharp as balls bounced off him a number of times. Put in some glorious deliveries nonetheless, with Mané going close with one and Fabinho bundling home another for the only goal of the game. Popped up in the centre forward position late on and hooked a ball across that Mee almost turned into his own net. Showed good pace to get back and clear Weghorst’s shot off the line first half even if it looked like it was trickling wide.
Matip – 7
He was shaky first half as he twice passed the ball straight to a Burnley shirt under no pressure. Lost a few headers to Weghorst too. Second half I thought he grew into it. Fantastic header to clear a cross that Cornet looked ready to pounce on. Stayed calm when they launched it long late on, always tried to bring it down and keep possession. Smart.
Van Dijk – 7
Battled well against Weghorst and commanded the backline well. That offside trap was a big help today. There were two moments where his control let him down and they were almost in but Ali came to his rescue for the first one and he recovered well the second time. Won some huge headers when defending set pieces.
Robertson – 6.5
Kept Lennon quiet and made good progress down the left hand side. Got into some good positions but never really created anything clear cut. One long ball to Salah early on was as close as he came.
Fabinho – 7.5
The match winner today as he gambled at the near post and turned Mané’s header home at the second attempt. Played well infront of the defence. Covered his fullbacks well and his distribution was solid. One lofted pass to Trent late on almost led to a goal.
Henderson – 4
Struggled badly today. His touch was heavy throughout and it saw him pick up a booking after Pieters who had pounced on one such heavy touch. He panicked in possession and kept booting it long down the wing for Salah to chase. Didn’t offer any level of control. One lovely first time cross to the back post first half but not at the races today. Rightly subbed by the hour mark.
Keita – 6.5
Did well enough first half. Went close to scoring but saw his swerving shot well saved by Pope. He battled well enough in midfield. Nothing fancy but effective in the end.
Salah – 5
Not at his best today. Couldn’t get any change out of Pieters as he struggled to impose himself on the game. Had a chance to lay one on a plate for Jota late on but the pass was terribly underhit, allowing a recovering defender to make the block. Poor today.
Firmino – 4.5
I’m shocked he lasted 90 minutes as he was once again underwhelming. Dropped deep into pockets of space like usual but his final ball was lacking. Simple through balls were either underhit or hit straight at the defender. He was terribly frustrating late on as he got caught in possession one too many times. A worrying dip in form for the Brazilian.
Mané – 6
Started well, dropped deep and spread passes around to get us on the attack. Set up Keita for that early chance. Almost scored himself from a Trent delivery but Pope was equal to it. Had the chance to play in Salah on the stroke of halftime but overhit the pass. There was a lot of that going round today. Quiet second half.
Thiago – 7.5
That extra bit of quality was evident as soon as he came on. It was night and day to what Henderson was offering. Thiago’s first touch in the game was to bring a ball down on his chest and play Salah in down the right. He created openings for Trent too as his dribbling ability saw him run straight through the heart of the Burnley midfield at times. Offered the control we needed to see out the game with minimum fuss.
Jota – 5
Didn’t get in the game at all. Swapped positions with Firmino but still saw little of the ball. Ran into defenders a few times late on. It could have been a different story if Salah’s pass had the right weight on it.
Milner – N/A
On to waste time in injury time. Doubt he even touched the ball.
The gaffer made four changes to his side, with Keita, Henderson, Mané and Salah coming in for Jones, Thiago, Diaz and Jota. A competitive first half saw his side nick the opening goal from a corner. He made an early sub to bring on Thiago as we needed more control in midfield. Took off Sadio for Jota later on too.
Was expecting Diaz for Firmino at some point but he resisted the urge. The three points are the most important thing. Not a game to remember, but another clean sheet and a win that cuts the gap back down to 9 points with a game in hand.
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