Player Ratings as Liverpool Beat Brighton to Take Title Leap

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Liverpool 2-1 Brighton: How Did Klopp’s Players Perform?

The return to Premier League action was a welcome sight, especially for all those not overly keen on the international football in the two weeks prior. The reds resumed their campaign by hosting 8th place Brighton, who arrived with some questionable recent form. The game was hard fought and reflective of a hosting group that had been separated for the fortnight before.

The line up and subsequent ratings are listed below.

Caoimhin Kelleher – 6.0

The 25-year-old Irishman started once more as Alisson Becker continues his return from injury. At the outset of this must win the game, the Anfield deputy was let down by some questionable defensive work, as the visitors took a very early lead. There was little that could have been done to stop that first goal, as the Danny Welbeck effort flew into the net. Everything (nearly) that needed dealing with thereafter was done with confidence and the stopper was assured whenever in possession.

Joe Gomez – 7.0

The England international defender has been the reds best left back this season; therefore, it was no issue to see him starting. From the opening whistle the 26-year-old was keen to show his power and pace, as he galloped up and down the wing. Had a few moments of indecision, but was good throughout a tricky game.

Conor Bradley – 7.0

The young Northern Irishman is now a firm first team option and his continued development is astounding. From the start of this game the 20-year-old was intent on engaging within the attacking third, which maybe left him a little exposed at the back. His ability to overlap and support was tantalizing and he offered superb instincts as the reds looked to get the win.

Jarell Quansah – 7.0

The England under-21 international defender started this game with the full backing of his manager. As the game started, the 6ft 3inch colossus was under pressure and had to react at key intervals to ensure Liverpool remained in the winning hunt. His temperament and strength were evident as he batted away everything that came his way.

Photo: IMAGO

Virgil van Dijk – 7.0

The captain and leader of this team was not entirely commanding from the outset, as his clearance attempt was in part what led to the Brighton goal. His superior instincts and ability rose from then on and he was largely untroubled for the remainder of the game.

Alexis Mac Allister – 9.0

The Argentina World Cup winner has been the reds best player this calendar year, which showed from the first minute of this game against his former employers. His control on the ball, ability to adjust tempo in possession and overall midfield display was authoritative and immense. Got the assist for Mohamed Salah and is striving to be amongst those in the running for player of the year.

Photo: IMAGO

Wataru Endō – 7.0

The Japan international captain had a mini rest during the latter part of the international break, which showed in his initial efforts of this game. As a shield to a team intent on reserving an early deficit, he was steadfast and resilient as others took on their attacking responsibilities.

Dominik Szoboszlai – 6.0

The Hungarian skipper is now back and fully fit, however, his rhythm will still take a few games to return. The ability and energy were not matched by the on-ball initiative which was too often lacking in the final decision. So important in the coming months. (Subbed – 90+4 mins)

Luis Díaz – 8.0

The Colombian flyer started this game as a live-wire that eventually brought the all-important equalizer. With a desire to drive across the pitch and affect the game state, his goal was one of instinct and fearlessness. Despite ongoing urgency, his teammates sometimes struggled to get on his wavelength, yet, his performance was an ingredient which brought the win nonetheless. (Subbed – 89 mins)

Darwin Núñez – 7.0

The Uruguayan Raging Bull was well marshalled and perhaps unsure how to combat a well drilled Brighton team. The work rate was never in doubt, though the final moment of indecision was too prevalent. A solid game after a couple of weeks of recuperation and his importance is unwavering. (Subbed – 83 mins)

Mohamed Salah – 7.0

The Egyptian King started this game after a period of rest and recovery in the fortnight prior. The lack of games was very apparent and you feel like real first team action is needed to bring the best back out of the man that had and wasted an abundance of chances. The winning goal brought his score up and despite his movement being good, he just needed to be more effective in front of goal.

Subs:

Harvey Elliott – 5.0 (on 83)

Came on to add energy.

Ryan Gravenberch – N/A (on 89)

Came on.

Cody Gakpo – N/A (on 90+4)

Came on.

Jürgen Klopp – 7.0

The German manager went with his strongest possible eleven, however, the two weeks break away seemed to see his team lose rhythm and intensity, which is so important to how the reds attack.

The opening changes did not come until late in the game, which either showed great confidence in those starting or a lack there of in those in reserve. The game plan was stuttering and the manager could do little to make elite level players better. Perseverance was needed and sometimes doing little is the best course.

Overall, this sticky game just needed winning and that was attained, though it was far too hard getting there.

Pre-match Prediction;

Liverpool 3 – 1 Brighton

Steven Smith

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