Manchester United 2-4 Liverpool: Ratings as Reds punished Ole’s sloppy defence

DON KOPLEONE rates the Liverpool players after a four-goal haul at the home of their greatest enemy.

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Liverpool needed to leave Old Trafford with three massive points, in order to keep their hopes of securing Champions League football in their hands.

This was always going to be a tough ask – Jürgen Klopp had never overseen a win at the ground, with the Reds’ 2014 victory their only success in their previous 15 visits.

And for 20 minutes, it looked as though there was every chance of yet more disappointment.

Klopp’s visitors were slow out of the traps, although Nat Phillips was unlucky when diverting a Bruno Fernandes effort into his own net.


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But the hosts then dropped off just as Liverpool’s intensity grew, and after being denied a penalty by VAR after one set-piece, Diogo Jota flicked in an equaliser before Roberto Firmino powered home a header, with both goals coming from dead-ball situations.

The quality of delivery from Trent Alexander-Arnold for that Bobby goal cannot be underestated.

After the interval, Firmino clicked straight back into groove, slotting his second after Luke Shaw’s giveaway had enabled a Liverpool counter-attack.

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It was only at this point that the hosts began to wake up, even if Liverpool might have extended their lead before Marcus Rashford ran through to make things nervy at 3-2.

With the minutes ticking down though, Mo Salah, who had been impressive throughout, finally got his chance and had the poise to bury on the breakaway.

A huge result at a ground in which Liverpool have notoriously struggled in recent years, but their job is not close to being over yet.

Your ratings, after a massive victory:

Starting XI

Ali 6 – Almost slipped in Cavani early doors and never looked comfortable on the ball.

Trent 9 – Just the best player on the pitch from the first minute to last. The right-back has probably been the best player in the Premier League since Gareth Southgate weirdly called him out. Man of the match.

Natty P 7 – Unlucky for the opener, battled well for the equaliser and generally seemed to have a good awareness of where his front post was when preventing crosses coming in.

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Rhys 6.5 – Looked very nervy in the first half, and may have let Rashford run too free for the United second, but made a crucial block at 3-2.

Robbo 5.5 – Once again too often poor on the ball and generally felt too reactive, rather than proactive, defensively.

ThiaGOAT 7.5 – Looked like a man who has played in the biggest games before. Some superb releases to set up counter-attacks, but loses a mark or two for being caught in possession once or twice.

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Fab 7 – The Brazilian showed why it was so important to keep him in midfield. United rarely succeeded when trying to play through Liverpool.

Gini 5.5 – Was at fault for the Fernandes opener, more than Fabinho, for me. Some positive dribbling but never assertive in his passing.

Mo 8.5 – General level of play was extremely mature, even while none of the big chances were falling to the Egyptian, and he functioned as a brilliant enabler for Alexander-Arnold at times. Killed the game off with superb composure. One hell of a display.

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Bobby 8 – Link-up was not always vintage Firmino, but bag a brace at Old Trafford and a high score surely has to be a-given? The equalising header was very well placed, in particular.

DioGOAL 7.5 – The importance of the Portuguese’s flicked goal cannot be underestimated. Pressed superbly which led to the third. Might have found his second when striking the post.

Subs

Sadio 6.5 – Almost ran onto a sumptuous Trent pass. Had a tantrum with Klopp after the final whistle, but no-one is going to be happy to be dropped for a game like this.

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CJ 7 – Quiet, other than the assist to seal the win!

Neco N/A – Jumped into one tackle.


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