Atalanta 0-5 Liverpool: Player ratings from a masterclass in Bergamo

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Liverpool produced their best performance of the season so far and one of their finest under Jurgen Klopp in a rout of Atalanta.

The Reds made a mockery of the Serie A side’s fearsome reputation in the scintillating 5-0 victory, with Diogo Jota hitting a hat-trick to continue his staggering start.

Here is how the Reds rated.

Alisson Becker – 7/10

After a nervy start which saw a couple of tame efforts nearly squirm away, Alisson authoritatively maintained Liverpool’s third consecutive European clean sheet.

The pick of his six saves was the last; the dangerous Duvan Zapata fired across goal, and Alisson got down very quickly to push it safety. It could so easily have snuck under him.

Trent Alexander-Arnold – 9/10

In the last few matches, he’s rediscovered his best form. His assist for Jota’s 16th-minute opener showcased his impeccable vision and precision.

Oh, and he defended well too.

Rhys Williams – 8/10

The biggest compliment you can pay to Williams was that he did not look out of place whatsoever. There were, as I recall, no jittery moments on what looked a daunting occasion.

Like Nathaniel Phillips on Saturday, he can be immensely proud. No doubt his manager, his team-mates and Liverpool’s supporters will shower him with applause.

Joe Gomez – 7/10

Zapata did his best to make life difficult for Gomez. He found joy by cutting inside, most notably when he navigated Gomez’s rather hasty sliding challenge and sent a shot the way of the top corner, only to see it come back off the angle.

Perhaps a seven would be a six if Zapata was more fortunate with that effort. But let’s not forget Gomez did contribute an assist on the night, measuring a neat pass into Jota for his and Liverpool’s second.

Andrew Robertson – 7/10

Exactly what you would expect. Dominated the left-flank with relentless attacking runs and scrappy defending when it was required.

Subbed with 25 minutes remaining for a no-doubt welcome rest.

Jordan Henderson – 8/10

Henderson has been excellent this season and this was another really strong captain’s performance. He was dictatorial in midfield in more ways than one. One of the joys of natural stadium sound is hearing his every cry. He is drill sergeant for the press but when his demands are met, he’ll offer rousing encouragement.

He too was able to put his feet up for the final part of the game.

Georginio Wijnaldum – 7/10

It felt like the kind of night where Gini Wijnaldum pops up with a goal. Alas not, but you couldn’t really fault any aspect of his performance, aside from that early yellow for wrestling back Gomez.

Curtis Jones – 8/10

This was the third time Jones had started a game in the past fortnight but the first time he had finished one. And perhaps that was because Jurgen Klopp was enjoying it too much.

I’m not sure Jones has looked so accomplished in any of his Liverpool outings. He was constantly finding space and eluding his weary markers.

It was perhaps a fortunate assist – after all, his main aim was to thump the ball clear – but he ought to have had one inside two minutes after slipping Jota through.

And if it wasn’t 5-0, I think the referee would have awarded him a penalty late on for Mojica’s shove. Maybe Salah would even have let him take it. Actually, probably not.

Sadio Mané – 9/10

After a stretching Sportiello saved his first two attempts, he produced a sumptuous dink over the on-rushing ‘keeper for Liverpool’s fourth of the night.

He then turned provider five minutes later with a sublime outside-of-the-foot pass into the path of Jota.

After failing to make the most of a late headed chance, he beat the turf in frustration. Never satisfied, and that’s what makes him so enthralling.

Mohamed Salah – 8/10

Salah also came up with a goal and an assist, clinically curling a strike into the top left corner before sliding Mané through.

There was an opportunity for a carbon-copy second as he raced away on another one-man counter, but the Egyptian was frustrated to see Sportiello deal with it this time.

Diogo Jota – 10/10

A devastating treble for the man who, as of now, must lead the way in the ‘signing of the summer’ stakes.

No doubt the best of the goals was the second. ‘He should have volleyed it,’ I said. It turned out he knew what he was doing, cutting back onto his right before applying a venomous finishing touch.

But all three goals – the first a delightfully subtle chip and the last a round-the-keeper sidefoot – exemplified his ever-growing confidence. The Jota we saw in flashes at Wolves is punishing opponents with almost alarming consistency. And, remember, there is to come.

There were honestly about five goals in this, especially if he’d stayed on for the full 90.

SUBSTITUTES

James Milner – 6/10

Tried to score a minor worldie late on. The man who assumed the armband could be heard insisting his team-mates kept focus and preserved their clean sheet.

Roberto Firmino – 7/10

Noticeably lively after some lethargic displays of late. The highlight of his cameo was when he drove at the Atalanta defence and saw a shot well blocked. Will Klopp err on the side of caution and restore him to the team against City? Will he see Jota as undroppable? Or will he try to fit both in?

Naby Keita – 6/10

A quiet outing on his welcome return from injury, but Keita kept Liverpool ticking as an attacking unit.

Kostas Tsimikas – 7/10

You could be forgiven for forgetting we’d signed him given the lengthy absence which followed his debut. But Tsimikas will be a valuable player, as he briefly illustrated here with some good defensive work.

Neco Williams – 6/10

Might have grabbed an assist, but Salah slipped before he could control a dangerous low cross.

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