By Lewis Rooke – @LV_Rooke
As Liverpool fans, we have seen it all. There is nothing we haven’t seen. Well that perception was well and truly flipped on its head on a glorious Tuesday night.
Trailing 3-0 to a star-studded Barcelona side, Liverpool needed a miracle to progress in a game many thought the Reds were only seeing out for pride. With Mohamed Salah and Roberto Firmino out, a decimated front line went up against all the odds and brought down the Barcelona dynasty by an incredible four goals to nil.
Divock Origi opened the scoring, before Gini Wijnaldum’s quickfire double brought Liverpool on level terms. Origi went on to score the winner after some supreme intelligence from Trent Alexander-Arnold to send Jurgen Klopp’s men through to their second consecutive Champions League final.
Here’s how the Reds rated on the most memorable night…
Alisson: 10 – An absolute wall in goal to keep Messi, Suarez and Co at bay. Keeping a clean sheet against arguably the best team in the world and the best player that’s ever lived is as good as it gets.
Trent Alexander-Arnold: 10 – Terrific persistence to tee up Gini Wijnaldum to score, and that corner to set up Divock Origi for the winner was a stroke of genius. Terrific all game.
Joel Matip: 10 – He has gone up levels since cementing his place in the Liverpool first team, and yet again was absolutely immense.
Virgil van Dijk: 10 – Incredible, as usual. Nothing more to be said about the best centre back in the world. He’ll be buzzing at the prospect of another Champions League final.
Andy Robertson: 10 – Slapped Messi in the first minute and I absolutely loved it. Didn’t particularly love Suarez’s little kick out at the Scot which forced him to go off injured at half time. Had a shot that tested Ter Stegen as well. Hopefully he will be okay for the final.
Fabinho: 10 – Looked like he was about to absolutely knock Luis Suarez out, didn’t he. Well in the end he did knock him out… of the Champions League. The Brazilian was a monster in the middle of the park.
Jordan Henderson: 10 – Captain fantastic leading the mighty Reds to yet another Champions League final, he was utterly immense in a midfield that suffocated the great Barcelona today.
James Milner: 10 – Had a decent first half in midfield but had to move to left back to cover the injured Andy Robertson, and as ever played the position as if he was born to it. Revenge for the Messi nutmeg many years ago.
Sadio Mane: 10 – Had a penalty turned down ten minutes in after a tangle of legs with Sergi Roberto and was electric throughout the match, popping up all over the front line. The Senegalese was utterly instrumental in Liverpool’s high press today.
Divock Origi: 10 – Has a man who has received so little game time had such an impact on a teams season? The Belgian was unplayable up top today and both of his goals were extremely well taken. Could Firmino’s starting place be under threat?
Xherdan Shaqiri: 10 – Gave away quite a few cheap balls in the first half that luckily went unpunished, redeemed himself by delivering a beautiful cross for Gini Wijnaldum to get his equaliser. Probably the weakest player on the pitch, but still gets a ten – so that says it all.
Gini Wijnaldum: 10 – Well what a substitution that was. Two goals that made me squeal like a kid each time and he proved himself an absolute hero today.
Joe Gomez: 10 – Did his job and saw the result out.
Daniel Sturridge: 10 – Did absolutely nothing, but you know what? He’s getting a big fat ten.