Football Features

“There’s nothing this man can’t do” – Full player ratings from Liverpool 2-0 Man Utd

By Ollie Thomas

Published: 18:43, 19 January 2020

Liverpool continued their march to the title this afternoon with a 2-0 victory over Manchester United.

Their win at Anfield means that they have now beaten every team in the Premier League this season and we’re only in the middle of January. Wow.

Virgil van Dijk’s towering header set the tone before Mohamed Salah added a second in a game which should have been over well before injury time at the end of the 90 minutes.

Here’s how the players rated at Anfield:

Liverpool

Alisson Becker – 7 – Was rarely tested but dealt with everything he had to. Even managed to add his first ever Premier League assist.

Trent Alexander-Arnold – 7 – A typical performance from a fantastic right-back. Provided a perfect cross for Van Dijk’s goal and always posed a threat.

Joe Gomez – 7 – A very assured display, reminiscent of his fellow centre-back.

Virgil van Dijk – 8 – An immense performance. Defensively excellent and produced a towering header to win the game. Where would Liverpool be without him?

Andy Robertson – 7 – Caused Aaron Wan-Bissaka a lot of problems down the left. Played very high up but didn’t shirk his defensive responsibilities.

Jordan Henderson – 8 – Was one of the main instigators for the astonishing tempo Liverpool set for long spells of the game. His passing was pinpoint and he was absolutely everywhere. Gets better and better every week.

Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain – 8 – The archetypal Jurgen Klopp midfielder. Capable of playing at the required pace and his pass for Georginio Wijnaldum’s disallowed goal was delicious. He will hope he can shake off his niggling injury issues.

Georginio Wijnaldum – 9 – Hardly put a foot wrong all game. Did everything you could want from a central midfielder and was only denied a well-deserved goal by a marginal offside decision. There seems to be nothing this man can’t do.

Mohamed Salah – 7 – Was at the heart of a lot of the positive attacking play Liverpool produced and his goal at the end was deserved given his overall contribution. His miss at the start of the second half, however, was criminal and he’s fortunate that it didn’t cost his side. Nonetheless, he’ll be delighted to have finally cracked the United code.

Roberto Firmino – 7 – Was unfortunate to have a sensational strike disallowed for a foul on David de Gea. Did his bit defensively as well as in the build-up play, but his Anfield ‘hoodoo’ continues. Nonetheless, was at the heart of a very creative Liverpool attack.

Sadio Mane – 6 – Wasn’t bad by any means but seems to have slightly dropped the performance levels that he showcased in the first half of the season.

Substitutes:

Adam Lallana (for Oxlade Chamberlain 66′) – 5 – Failed to build on the excellent showing from Oxlade-Chamberlain.

Fabinho (for Mane 83′) – 5 – A late substitute.

Divock Origi (for Firmino 83′ ) – 5 – A late substitute.

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Manchester Utd

David de Gea – 8 – Kept United in the game after getting ‘fouled’ by Van Dijk in the build-up to one of Liverpool’s disallowed goals and made smart saves from Mane and Henderson. Some of the question marks over his place in the team will have been erased today.

Aaron Wan-Bissaka – 4 – Looked fairly steady in the first half but simply couldn’t match the intensity of the Liverpool attack in the second. One of the only times he’s looked suspect defensively in his career. Needs to show more energy in games like this.

Victor Lindelof – 5 – Put under immense pressure for most of the game and struggled at times. Got away with one after De Gea was fouled and he failed to clear. Didn’t do any worse than his defensive partners.

Harry Maguire – 5 – His first game as United captain could have been far, far worse and he failed to put his stamp on the game. Should have been responsible for marking Van Dijk for the first goal, although that isn’t necessarily his fault.

Luke Shaw – 5 – Played out of position and you could tell. Gave his best and didn’t look totally lost, but it would be a surprise to see him play centrally in a game of this magnitude again.

Brandon Williams – 8 – One of the brightest sparks on the pitch. Everyone knows about his hunger and passion, but technically he was on point today and looked like the answer to United’s problems at left-back. Was comfortably better than Shaw and was very unlucky to be taken off before the end.

Nemanja Matic – 6 – Has turned his career around fairly effectively at United and filled in well for Scott McTominay today. Doesn’t offer as much as the Scotsman does but his experience certainly helped United weather a fair few storms throughout the 90 minutes.

Fred – 8 – Sloppy at times but, for the most part, seemed to be on a one-man mission to save the game. Got through a ridiculous amount of legwork and was the main driving force behind the majority of United’s attacks. The biggest compliment you can pay him is that he looked like he belonged in Liverpool’s midfield.

Andreas Pereira – 4 – Whilst Fred was on a one-man mission to save the game, Pereira was on a one-man mission to end most of United’s attacks. Gave the ball away more than any of his team-mates – his only saving grace was that his pass to Anthony Martial should have led to an equaliser.

Anthony Martial – 5 – Was clearly United’s most gifted attacker but his second-half miss proved costly. One can’t help but think that Marcus Rashford would have relished the chance to lead the line today. However, the Frenchman did not seem to.

Daniel James – 3 – Anonymous is an understatement. After wasting a great chance to put it on a plate for Martial, he totally disappeared until the final 10 minutes, when he eventually started to get involved again. He did nowhere near enough given the attacking responsibility he had.

Substitutes:

Mason Greenwood (for Williams 74′) – 5 – Tried to get things going but failed to make any impact.

Juan Mata (for Pereira 74′) – 5 – Didn’t do much other than give the ball away as United chased the game.

Diogo Dalot (for Shaw 87′) – n/a – A late substitute.

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