Liverpool won all three points in the Merseyside derby tonight, as goals from Salah and Gakpo saw the Reds ease to a comfortable 2-0 victory. The Toffees hit the post from a corner but a lightening quick breakaway saw Liverpool open the scoring seconds later. Here are player ratings from the encounter.

Alisson – 6

A quiet night at the office. Only faced the one shot on target, and even that was a weak Iwobi effort. Had to be strong to punch one corner clear under pressure from Tarkowski.

Alexander-Arnold 7

First half he must have given the ball away with every attempted pass. His distribution was shocking. The very best players never give up though and he got his reward in the end when he laid one on a plate for Gakpo. Defended well one on one and put in some strong tackles. Lost Davies at the backpost late on.

Matip – 6

Missed a simple clearance in the opening stages, handing Simms a chance. Thankfully Gomez was on the cover to block the shot. He was very jittery throughout and looked like a fish out of water whenever he was pulled wide into the right channel. His ball carrying kept us on the front foot however.

Gomez – 7

Much accomplished tonight. Kept Simms quiet and was generally assured. Crucial block on McNeil’s cross to set up the counter for the opener. Kept the ball moving. A welcome clean sheet.

Robertson – 7.5

Like Trent, his final pass or cross was a bit wayward first half. It improved as the game wore on though, and his energy to burst away from his man set the side on the counter for the second goal. Loved it when he kicked the ball away from Pickford late on and laughed right in his face. Hilarious.

Fabinho – 7

Quiet. Didn’t stand out, which is for the best as he has been standing out for the wrong reasons lately. He did his job shielding the defence and looked much better with legs around him.

Henderson – 7.5

Set the tempo with his harrying and closing down. Pressed Pickford into skewed clearances a number of times and showed great energy to still get back and get a toe in to halt one dangerous attack. Not the cutest on the ball but more than made up for it with his workrate.

Bajcetic 8

Continues to bely his tender years with performances like this. That was a Merseyside derby he just waltzed through like it was a kick-about with his mates. He has a lovely turn on him, not too dissimilar to Thiago’s trademark turn. Not a bad player to be learning off of. His tackle won the ball off Iwobi to allow Robertson set off the counter that led to the second.

Salah 7.5

Broke the deadlock when he stabbed Darwin’s cross into an unguarded net. Kept Mykolenko honest all night and was denied a second goal by a fantastic Tarkowski block. In truth, Bajcetic’s pass could have been firmer. It was good to see the Egyptian get into dangerous positions over and over tonight. He’s been on the periphery at times this season.

Gakpo 8

Played through the middle again and looked much better tonight. Almost like he is starting to understand what the manager expects of him in that role. Scored his first goal in red with a simple tap in at the backpost. He looked a different player after that, with his confidence evidently soaring. He pirouetted beautifully in midfield to set up chances for his teammates.

Darwin 7.5

First 40 minutes he was the only attacker in red actually trying to force openings. His overhead kick attempt set up Gakpo for a good chance. He then opened the game up with a brilliant piece of play when he exchanged passes with Salah inside his own half before leaving Gueye for dead as he breezed into the Everton half.

He still had the wherewithal to clip a left footed cross for Salah to stab home. Second half he got on the end of a two decent chances but couldn’t find the back of the net. The first, Pickford produced the save from a tight angle, the second – he just couldn’t get enough curl on it as it went agonisingly wide.


Jota – 6

Looked rusty, understandably so. Thought he was set for a tap in at the end but Milner’s cross was cut out.

Firmino – 6

Set Salah away with a lovely ball. Great to see him back.

Milner – 7

Won some meaty challenges. One on Maupay was especially impressive after he had been sold short as the last man by a Trent pass. He run onto Harvey’s through ball and almost laid one on a plate for Jota.

Keita – 6

Got a few touches playing on the left of the midfield three.

Elliott – 7

Another who put himself about and threw in big tackles. Combined well with Milner to almost set up a third.

Jürgen Klopp

The manager made just two changes to his lineup, with Fabinho and Henderson coming in for Keita and the injured Thiago. It was a steady start by the Reds as they felt their way into the game. Everton were compact and threatened on set pieces but were undone by two counter attacks.

The side managed the game well throughout and limited Everton to scraps in open play. A well needed victory. Now on to tougher tests.



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