With this being the first day of February, it’s time to look back at the month that was January and crown a Liverpool Player of the Month. It was slim pickings really, with each member of the squad underwhelming over the course of the month.

The Reds kicked off the New Year with a sorry display at Brentford. As if the 3-1 defeat wasn’t enough, Virgil Van Dijk suffered a hamstring injury and has been absent since. A gutless 2-2 home draw against Wolves followed in the FA Cup, before the most abject of performances in the 3-0 humbling at Brighton.

The side at least showed a bit of a response, turning over Wolves 1-0 in the third round replay for their sole victory last month. Fellow strugglers Chelsea were next at Anfield, with a dull goalless draw being played out.

The month wrapped up with that disapointing last gasp defeat at Brighton in the FA Cup. This was the true definition of a January from hell for Jürgen Klopp’s men. Here are the top performing players (if you can call them that) over the course of the month January:

3. Joe Gomezavg. rating (5.5)

The 25 year old was out of the team at the beginning of the month, with both Konaté and Matip preferred ahead of him in games against Brentford, Wolves and Brighton. Van Dijk’s injury and Matip’s poor form saw him handed his chance in the cup replay at Molineux.

He was operating as the left side centre back alongside Ibou and put in an accomplished display. He helped Tsimikas neutralise the threat of the pacy Traore before switching to right back late in the game.

He produced a goal saving block to deny Raul Jimenez from close range. Then against Chelsea, he again played his part in keeping a clean sheet. It was not all smooth sailing however, with Joe making a number of little errors here and there.

He kept his place for the trip to Brighton a few days ago and was embarrassed by an incredible piece of skill by Mitoma for the late, late winner. Gomez hasn’t kicked on like he should in all honesty, and it seems we are all waiting for him to find his title winning form.

It has come in dribs and drabs however and the jury is out as to whether he’s the long term leader at the back that he’s been made out to be over the years. He will keep his place in the side for the mean time, with Konaté joining the injury casualty list.

Joe Gomez in January:

• 3 tackles won
• 5 duels won
• 6 interceptions
• 6 blocks
• 17 clearances
• 22 ball recoveries

2. Darwin Nunez – avg. rating (5.6)

The Uruguayan sneaks into the top two simply because he was absent for the dreadful league defeat at Brighton. He started away at Brentford in the beginning of the month and saw an effort cleared off the line early on before seeing a lovely finish chalked off for a marginal offside.

He was then the pick of the bunch against Wolves, with a beautifully steered finish dragging the side level on the stroke of halftime. His pace and intelligent running in behind was sorely lacking in that aforementioned defeat at the Amex.

He returned from a hamstring strain against Chelsea, coming off the bench to try and breath life into a stunted Liverpool attack. He stretched the play and the side looked better for it but a breakthrough wasn’t forthcoming. His cameo at Brighton wasn’t as impactful.

Each of Darwin Nunez’s ten strikes for Liverpool have been first time finishes.

The 23 year old seems to thrive of instinctive, first time finishes. When he has time to take a touch or two and think about the finish, it seems to go wrong. There’s definitely room for improvement.

1. Ibrahima Konatéavg. rating (5.9)

Aside Stefan Bajcetic (who didn’t make enough appearances to earn an average rating), Ibou was the best performing Red in January. The Frenchman had to recover from a harrowing night at Brentford on what was his first start of the season for the club.

He netted an unfortunate own goal before making a huge error for Bryan Mbeumo’s late clincher. He was similarly susceptible at home to Wolves, failing to get enough purchase on a clearance, allowing Hee-Chan Hwang to level the game late on.

He was much better at Brighton but he was fighting a losing battle as the midfield and defence gave way round him. He looked even better when paired up with Gomez at Wolves, with Ibou operating as the right sided centre back.

He covered for Trent brilliantly and deserved the clean sheet. He was once again solid against Chelsea, keeping Kai Havertz and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang under wraps throughout. He was key to those consecutive clean sheets.

At Brighton last time out, he was again a standout. He produced a huge block to deny Evan Ferguson late on before thwarting Mac Allister when he went clean through on goal. It’s just our luck that our best player over the last month has also picked up an injury.

Ibou is now sidelined for the next fortnight or so with a hamstring complaint, with the club sweating on his fitness ahead of the Champions League showdown with Real Madrid.

Ibrahima Konaté was the only player to play every single minute of Liverpool’s six fixtures across the month of January.

Highest rated individual performance of the month:

° Ibrahima Konaté vs Wolves – (9/10)

° Joe Gomez vs Wolves – (9/10)

° Stefan Bajcetic vs Wolves – (9/10)

° Thiago Alcantara vs Wolves – (9/10)

° Harvey Elliott vs Wolves – (9/10)

Made4Liverpool 22/23 Player of the Month:

August – Harvey Elliott

September – Thiago Alcantara

October – Alisson Becker

November – Darwin Nunez

December – Trent Alexander-Arnold

January – Ibrahima Konaté

*Average ratings are collated from the player ratings posted on this site after every match. Players must have earned a rating in more than half the number of games in the month under review.


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