Football News

Tottenham 2-1 Liverpool: Player ratings as nine-man Reds fall in the final seconds

By Mohamed Moallim

Published: 19:30, 30 September 2023

Tottenham beat nine-man Liverpool to go one point behind league-leaders Manchester City on Saturday evening.

Two unbeaten Premier League sides locked horns in North London this evening with Tottenham hosting Liverpool.

Heading into this much-anticipated clash Jurgen Klopp’s visitors sat above their rivals, but Spurs were in a buoyant mood following an entertaining 2-2 draw with neighbours Arsenal last time out.

This meeting also saw the league’s early ‘assist king’ contenders James Maddison and Mohamed Salah going head-to-head. Neither contributed direct goal involvements to Spurs’ win, however, as Ange Postecoglou’s men ran out 2-1 winners.

Son Heung-min put the hosts in front before Cody Gakpo equalised. However, before Son’s opener Curtis Jones was sent off, and not long after Gakpo’s leveller Diogo Jota — who replaced the Dutchman at half-time — saw red himself.

Just as nine-man Liverpool were heading towards a hard-fought point, Joël Matip, in the final minute of stoppage time, inadvertently put the ball into his own net. Consequently, the Lilywhites now find themselves in second, leapfrogging the 19-time English champions.

As the dust begins to settle, here are our player ratings.


Guglielmo Vicario – 6.5 – Produced a brilliant double save to Cody Gakpo and Andrew Robertson early in the first half. 

Destiny Udogie – 6.5 – Handed another tough assignment. Last week it was Bukayo Saka. This week it’s Mo Salah. The young full-back took it in his stride and came out strong.

Micky van de Ven – 5.5 – Showed glimpses of his prowess when it comes to one-on-one defending, but it ended up being a comfortable evening once Liverpool started to lose bodies.

Cristian Romero – 6.5 – Another outing in which he made his presence felt. Only teammate Bissouma (140) had more touches (113) than him while he won 10 of his 13 duels.

Pedro Porro – 6 – Kept on his toes by Liverpool’s fluid attack. He responded well, winning 100% of his tackles (3/3) while making four clearances before making the cross which led to Matip’s unfortunate own goal.

Yves Bissouma – 7 – His 116 accurate passes are the most by a Tottenham player in a Premier League game since Harry Winks against Newcastle in August 2019 (126).

Pape Matar Sarr – 6 – Had a moment before the hour mark in which he unleashed a solid strike from the edge of the box with his left foot but Alisson was untroubled.

Son Heung-min – 7 – He’s now scored six goals in his last four Premier League appearances. Furthermore, only Jamie Vardy (five games between February 2016 and December 2017) has scored in more successive Premier League games against Liverpool than him; Son has now scored in his last four league appearances against them.

James Maddison – 6.5 – Produced a scrumptious through ball which led to Son’s opener. 

Dejan Kulusevski – 6.5 – The flying Swede attempted no fewer than eight game-high dribbles completing four. He also created five chances, more than any Spurs player.

Richarlison – 6 – Started out on the left allowing Son to retain his spot through the middle. It paid off as the Brazilian teed-up Son to put Spurs in front. Also saw a late first-half effort hit the post.


Manor Solomon (for Son 68) – 5 – Had some moments but couldn’t contribute to a Spurs winner.

Oliver Skipp (for Sarr 82) – N/A – A late sub.

Ben Davies (for Udogie 82) – N/A – A late sub.

Pierre-Emile Højbjerg (for Bissouma 90) – N/A – A late sub.

Alejo Véliz (for Maddison 90) – N/A – A late sub.

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Alisson Becker – 7 – Frustrated not to keep a clean sheet but did pull off a wonderful save to deny James Maddison and Son early into the second half. His eight saves are his most in a Premier League game and the most by a Liverpool goalkeeper in the competition since Simon Mignolet in January 2016 against West Ham (also 8).

Andy Robertson – 5.5 – The marauding Scottish full-back created three chances this evening, more than anyone in a red shirt.

Virgil van Dijk – 5 – Could have done better in the build-up to Spurs’ opener but did pop up at the other end to provide for compatriot Gakpo.

Joël Matip – 4.5 – The busier of Liverpool’s centre-backs, having made no fewer than nine clearances with some being crucial interventions. Unfortunate to put the ball into his own net seconds from the end.

Joe Gomez – 4 – A fourth consecutive Premier League start at right-back. The 11-time England international put in a more subdued performance due to Richarlison and Udogie operating in his area.

Curtis Jones – 3 – A bad follow-through on Bissouma resulted in Jones picking up the first red card of his Liverpool career.

“He is over the top, the ball is moving and it is certainly not a red, it looks worse than it actually is. His foot slips, it is not a red for me and this will ruin the game,” came Neville’s response.

“I maybe wrong, but I just do not know any more. In slow motion, you will come to the conclusion it is a red card. I do not think he has gone over the top to do him.”

Alexis Mac Allister – 4 – Entered the referee’s book following a cynical foul on Udogie.

Dominik Szoboszlai – 5.5 – Liverpool’s crosser-in-chief with five in this game. He also won possession on 10 occasions – more than any Liverpool player.

Luis Díaz – 6 – Had the ball in the back of the net, but the flag went up. Incorrectly, it later transpired, with VAR failing to intervene and PGMOL being forced to issue an apology:

“PGMOL acknowledge a significant human error occurred during the first half of Tottenham Hotspur v Liverpool.

“The goal by Luiz Diaz was disallowed for offside by the on-field team of match officials. This was a clear and obvious factual error and should have resulted in the goal being awarded through VAR intervention, however, the VAR failed to intervene.

“PGMOL will conduct a full review into the circumstances which led to the error.”

Cody Gakpo – 6 – Had a golden chance to put the Reds in front but saw his effort expertly saved.

“I thought Gakpo could just sweep it in first time, but he takes a first touch,” Gary Neville said on Sky Sports commentary. He would make amends in first-half stoppage time with a picturesque turn-and-finish. Six of his nine Premier League goals have come away from home, including each of the last five.

Mohamed Salah – 5 – Arguably the most in-form Liverpool player coming into today’s game. In the end, Salah was unable to extend his goal involvement run. He either scored (six goals) or assisted (nine assists) a goal in each of his last 12 Premier League appearances, including all six of Liverpool’s league games this season (three goals and four assists).


Diogo Jota (for Gakpo 46) – 2.5 – Came on after the break and didn’t last long after picking up two immediate yellow cards. His first infringement was a trip on Udogie on 68 minutes. He was then sent off one minute and 27 seconds later for another challenge on Udogie.

“That was stupidity, Klopp will not have much time for that,” Neville said. “He has just been booked, what is he doing? That is not very clever and he has let his team-mates down.”

Wataru Endo (for Salah 73) – N/A – A late sub.

Trent Alexander-Arnold (for Gomez 73) – N/A – A late sub.

Ibrahima Konaté (for Diaz 73) – N/A – A late sub.

Ryan Gravenberch (for Mac Allister 79) – N/A – A late sub.