Player Ratings as plucky Reds stay alive in title race: Saints 1 Liverpool 3

Player Ratings as plucky Reds stay alive in title race: Saints 1 Liverpool 3

Phew. Breathe! Liverpool didn’t make it easy for themselves. They haven’t in a while, have they? But at this stage of the season, what matters is the result. That final result leads 3-1 in the favour of the Reds, as they beat a brave Southampton at St. Mary’s.

Shane Long put Southampton in the lead, but the Reds equalised before half-time, through Naby Keita’s first goal for the club. Mo Salah and Jordan Henderson scored late in the game, to ensure that the Reds took three more points in the race for the title.

Here’s how each player fared.

Alisson Becker – 5/10

There was little that he could do about the Southampton goal. There weren’t too many heart-attacks while he was on the ball. But he was a little twitchy on Southampton crosses in the second half.

Trent Alexander-Arnold – 6/10

He got the assist for the equaliser, but he really wasn’t himself tonight. Redmond and Bertrand made life extremely difficult for him. He was uncharacteristic in getting flustered under pressure, too. Milner replaced him early in the second half.

Joel Matip – 5/10

Some day, it really will be nice if Matip can get his head to a ball and clear it. Long’s relentlessness had him on his back foot throughout. Made some crucial last-ditch tackles, though.

Virgil van Dijk – 7/10

Maybe, he could have done better in getting to Hojbjerg before Long scored, but that aside, he was just himself. He lost barely any aerial duels.

Andrew Robertson – 5/10

Defensively, he was not bad. He made some stupid lunges right at the end, but no harm was done. His crossing was uncharacteristically poor.

Fabinho – 3/10

That was among his worst games for Liverpool. He was sloppy in possession, got beaten far too easily by Redmond far too often.

Naby Keita – 6/10

He should have been tracking Hojbjerg’s run for that goal. His switching off meant that Liverpool’s defence were all dragged out of possession. His first goal for the club was superbly taken and will be a massive fillip to his confidence.

Gini Wijnaldum – 4/10

Ghost Gini. He’s looking tired lately and could do with a rest.

Mo Salah – 8/10

His touches let him down often, he didn’t make too many great decisions. But boy! Who cares!?! His 50th Premier League goal for Liverpool is probably the most important so far. Here’s to many more such important goals in the remaining five games. For a man with that drought hanging on his shoulders, what a show of bottle to take that shot on the run, despite Firmino being right by him!

Roberto Firmino – 7/10

He never stopped working. He gave away possession a little too cheaply in the first half, but he also was integral in the attacking play. It was superb centre-forward play from him, to set up Henderson for the third goal.

Sadio Mané – 7/10

He was Liverpool’s most consistent attacking threat on the night. He put Valery and Bednarek under pressure all night. Should’ve scored with at least one of the two headers he had in the first half.

Substitutes

James Milner – 6/10

He brought calm to proceedings, after being put on at right-back. He put in some superb crosses from the right flank. He also put in a superb sliding tackle on Sims to stop a Saints counter-attack.

Jordan Henderson – 9/10

The captain changed that game. His passion and drive from midfield were there for all to be seen. He set Salah off on the counter with a very intelligent header. And then, popped up with his goal, too.

Dejan Lovren – N/A

He came on after Henderson’s goal to shore things up.