By ‘The Don’ – @donkopleone
A match that started off as a real battle ended as a fairly comfortable win for a Liverpool side who really showed up to the fight on a sunny evening away at Burnley.
Unlike Reds sides of the past, this is a team that has both the technical superiority and the physical capability to match Ashley Barnes and co. with every little cynical shoulder barge.
A 3-0 win, with an own goal followed by strikes from Sadio Mané and Roberto Firmino, could have been four or five if Jurgen Klopp’s side had been at their most clinical.
Yet, it was a first clean sheet of the season which was possibly the most pleasing part of the victory at Turf Moor.
As for individual performances, Don Kopleone was on the match ratings…
For some reason he was consistently and infuriatingly chipping the ball into central space, which invited the Burnley midfield onto us. Also looked to lack communication with the defence at times. Still, the Spaniard produced a big save from Jay Rodriguez late on to secure a first clean sheet of the season.
Was undoubtedly an own-goal when his deflected cross looped over Nick Pope, but the Reds’ right-back was terrific both offensively and defensively throughout. Turned the ball behind for a corner superbly when under serious pressure, as well.
Very good once again. Started the move from which Firmino made it three with a great pass.
Unbelievably good football player. How many times will Chris Wood and Ashley Barnes be aerially dominated this season?
Seemed to not quite be in the right position when we needed attacking support a few times before the break, but maybe that was intentional tactical conservatism from Klopp. Very good second half, though.
Second brilliant performance in a row. The Reds’ captain is playing some of the best football he has of his career.
Fabinho 8.5 (man of the match)
This isn’t the first time a Fabinho performance has left me purring, and it certainly won’t be the last. This is a man who can s***house as well as Ashley Barnes, yet has a passing range and technical ability befitting his Brazilian citizenship. Imperious in the air, too. Jamie Carragher thinks he’s now the best defensive midfielder the Premier League. Few could disagree.
Best performance of the season from the little Dutchman. Some brilliant defensive work, but – as always – lacked some composure when going forward.
Managed to infuriate Mané with his selfishness but was a constant threat, with tremendous work-rate to boot. Really should consider passing the ball though…
Generally his final ball was poor today, yet Bobby went off the pitch with a goal and an assist. Brilliant finish from the edge of the box to secure the tie.
Clinical finish to double the visitors’ lead, amongst some very impressive hold-up play. Left the field in a fit of rage though, which was a concern. He wasn’t happy with Salah’s lack of passing.
Oxlade-Chamberlain (Henderson, 70′) 7
Really impressive cameo, bursting forward from the middle.
Divock (Mané, 85′) N/A
Free-kick strangely given against him when he looked to have shown an unbelievable turn of pace.
Shaqiri (Firmino, 85′) N/A
Token appearance for the Swiss who is said to be desperate for more minutes.