Football Features

Player ratings as Liverpool out-last Chelsea to win the Carabao Cup after heart-stopping 11-10 penalty shoot-out

By Muhammad Butt

Published: 19:48, 27 February 2022 | Updated: 22:33, 28 November 2022


Liverpool beat Chelsea 11-10 on penalties after a heart-stopping 0-0 draw to win the 2022 Carabao Cup.

The match itself was end-to-end and loaded with chances but missed sitters, great saves and the ever-present head of VAR kept it goalless until the penalty shoot-out where Thomas Tuchel’s big gamble failed to pay off.

Here’s how the players rated at Wembley:

Chelsea

Edouard Mendy – 8 – A truly dominant display in the Chelsea goal. Made several massive interventions, topped by a heart-stopping double save to deny Naby Keita and Sadio Mané in the first-half. Kept a clean sheet then cheerfully made way for Kepa in the shoot-out, but given how things turned out, should he have stayed on?

Trevoh Chalobah – 6 – Never gave up, for sure; but he had trouble dealing with the movement of Luis Diaz and Sadio Mané and was just lucky that Liverpool’s delivery from the left wasn’t at its best.

Thiago Silva – 8 – Exceptionally controlled display. Is he really 37? Doesn’t seem believeable.

Antonio Rudiger – 9 – Devoured Salah. From start to finish he had the excellent Egyptian in his pocket. If only this were a bigger stage than the Carabao Cup final, this performance would be talked about for years. Magisterial.

Cesar Azpilicueta – 7 – A threat going forward. Put it on a plate for Pulisic in the early moments of the game. Had to go off injured.

N’Golo Kanté – 8 – In typical buzzsaw form. Swept the passing lanes like a master and drove the ball forward when he had the chance.

Mateo Kovacic – 7 – Put himself about in an energetic display.

Marcos Alonso – 6 – Bizarrely wasn’t exposed by Liverpool all that much in defensive areas, but offered little in attack.

Mason Mount – 5 – Some of his movement and link play was sublime. His finishing, however, was not. Missed two sitters.

Christian Pulisic – 5 – Bright runs and one delicious scoop pass for Mount aside, Pulisic’s display in the final was mostly about his terrible shooting as he missed two sitters, including one early on that could have set Chelsea up for a comfortable, dominant win.

Kai Havertz – 8 – Simply out of this world display from the German. Proper Big Game Kai. He’s basically a 6’3 Andrés Iniesta with the way he drifts between lines and finds his team-mates in goalscoring positions. Even scored an Iniesta-y big goal in a final, only for VAR to intervene.


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Chelsea Substitutes:

Reece James (for Azpilicueta 57′) – 6 – Nowhere near fit enough for a game of this magnitude. Naturally got better as things went on but not the player we know he can be.

Romelu Lukaku (for Mount 73′) – 7 – Offered a constant menace and threat to the Liverpool defence. Pulled a massive save out of Kelleher and scored only for a dastardly precision offside to rule it out. Scored and got an assist in extra-time only for both goals to be ruled out by VAR for offside.

Timo Werner (for Pulisic 74′) – 5 – As usual The Werner Formula (the better the movement, the worse the finishing) was in effect.

Jorginho (for Kovacic 106′) – 6 – Came on, played a few nice passes. Scored in the shootout.

Kepa Arrizabalaga (for Mendy 120′) – 4 – Came on for the shoot-out but was helpless in the shoot-out. Alright you can understand conceding the first five given the ridiculous quality of Liverpool’s takers, but once it got to sudden death the Spaniard saw some penalties squeak by him that absolutely should have been saved.

Then for Kepa to cap it all off by missing the decisive penalty… this was like David de Gea in Gdansk, but at least De Gea played the whole game and wasn’t thought of as a specialist. Kepa was meant to save the Blues! Mendy is one of the best in the world but went off willingly as the Spaniard was said to be a specialist! Tuchel’s gamble backfired.


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Liverpool

Caoimhin Kelleher – 7 – Wasn’t as busy as Mendy but still made some big saves, including one massive stop at the end of 90 minutes to keep Lukaku from winning it late. His trophy-winning penalty was sublime.

Trent Alexander-Arnold – 8 – A barrage of bafflingly beautiful crosses as usual from the best European right-back.

Joel Matip – 7 – Got undone by some of Chelsea’s brighter movement but had a solid game in general. Scored triumphantly, but had the goal ruled out for an offside in the build-up.

Virgil van Dijk – 8 – Seems to have regained a measure of his invincible aura. Pulled off several offside decisions, some unintentionally, some with distinct purpose.

Andrew Robertson – 5 – Not his best game. Often found sharp positions but his finishing was suspect.

Fabinho – 7 – Screened his defence well but got bypassed as Chelsea used the wide areas. Hit a majestic panenka in the shoot-out.

Naby Keita – 6 – Put himself about some. Lucky to avoid a red card.

Jordan Henderson – 7 – Seemingly not much of an influence on the game, but Liverpool lost an edge when he left the field. Whatever else Jordan Henderson is, the lad is most assuredly a leader.

Mohamed Salah – 5 – Spent the vast majority of the game in Rudiger’s pocket. The one time he escaped (by playing on the opposite side of the field) he got a 1-v-1 with Edouard Mendy that he missed. Scored in the shoot-out, though.

Luis Diaz – 7 – An absolute livewire. Tormented poor Trevoh Chalobah with his dribbling. More danger than delivery, but still good.

Sadio Mané – 5 – Inexplicably missed two sitters in the first-half, one with his head was perhaps forgivable but the second where he shot a rebound right at Edouard Mendy was staggering. Subbed off second-half.

Substitutes:

Harvey Elliott (for Henderson 80′) – 5 – Did nothing except try and get into a scuffle with Antonio Rudiger.

James Milner (for Keita 80′) – 6 – Buried his penalty in the shoot-out.

Diogo Jota (for Mané 80′) – 6 – Added a bit of pep to the Liverpool attack but couldn’t get through.

Ibrahima Konaté (for Matip 91′) – 6 – Got diced up by Lukaku, fortunately for him the goal was ruled out for offside. Responded by defending the Belgian brilliantly.

Divock Origi (for Diaz 97′) – 5 – Had his “Origi moment” at the last but didn’t connect with a volley. Scored a penalty superbly.

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