LIVERPOOL VS MANCHESTER CITY: PLAYER RATINGS
SRINIVAS SADHANAND AND ARNAV KHANNA | 4th October 2021
The two best teams in the Premier League. The two best managers in the world. The best game of football in the world.
That sums it up, if we’re being honest but since there was too much to break down from an instant classic, here are our player ratings.
The Brazilian did all he could do in this game. Made crucial saves in the first-half to keep City from running away with the game and was solid overall, barring a sole error in which he gave possession away.
Beaten only by an inch-perfect Foden finish and a De Bruyne strike which he was primed to save if not for the deflection off of Joel Matip.
James Milner- 3/10
🗣"I think Milner has gone home in an ambulance tonight." 🤣
Roy Keane was impressed with Phil Foden today for Manchester City. pic.twitter.com/k7dq4KF9IK
— Football Daily (@footballdaily) October 3, 2021
The English veteran spent all game fighting for his life. He was terrorized by Foden all game and his only reply was a tackle that got him yellow carded. Should have seen a second yellow around the hour mark before he was replaced with Joe Gomez. Was muted in attack as well.
Joel Matip- 7/10
The superior performer out of the centre-back pairing, Matip left his mark playing in a majorly inconsequential Liverpool team. He was solid defensively and regularly stepped out of defence to progress play and split lines. Only blip was a deflection that led to the second equalizer.
Virgil van Dijk- 6/10
A quiet evening by the Dutchman’s standards, he did the bare minimum and nothing else. The trademark diagonals were in short supply and there wasn’t much attacking intensity in his game in general. Defensively adequate, he did have to cover his blushes after Bernardo Silva put him on the ground in the first half.
Andy Robertson- 6/10
Another subdued performer in the Liverpool backline, one finds it hard to recall any significant action by Robertson in the final third. Kept Jesus at bay and fulfilled his defensive chores but other than, the Scot was a shadow of his usual self when he stepped beyond the halfway line.
In a malfunctioning midfield, the Brazilian was left to fend for himself as he tried to cover large gaps and was regularly dragged out of position. Not only did this make him look defensively shaky, his ability to push the Reds forward suffered as a whole. Unable to stamp his authority on the game but it wasn’t all his fault.
Certainly lackadaisical for getting beaten for Jesus’ assist to Foden too easily.
Jordan Henderson- 3.5/10
He who shouts at everyone, should sometimes try shouting at himself. Bluntly, the Englishman failed to fulfil the role that was assigned to him. Klopp’s central midfielders are supposed to recycle possession and cover their full-backs and Jordan Henderson did neither.
I really don't think Henderson's new role is doing him or the team any favours. Not knocking him, injuries have forced Klopp's hand. It just isn't pretty viewing.
— Sam McGuire (@SamMcGuire90) October 3, 2021
Milner regularly got skinned while the Reds skipper nonchalantly gave the ball away multiple times, ending with a pass accuracy of 50%. A massive reason behind Liverpool’s struggles.
Curtis Jones- 5/10
Usually brilliant, this was for the better part an anonymous performance from the English youngster. Never getting the required time and space on the ball, he failed to make his mark as his only moments that one remembers are the ones where he loses the ball to City’s press.
Sadio Mane- 7/10
For all the slander being leveled at his fall from grace, Mane still remains an absolute specimen and an exquisite outlet. The sharp finish, followed by the precise run for Liverpool’s first goal reiterated that. Not as dominant of a figure as before, he still holds his ground in Klopp’s system.
Diogo Jota- 5/10
Continuing the theme of anonymity, Jota’s presence in the first 34 was close to nil. Did have a good shot in the second half, but was soon replaced with Roberto Firmino. Forgettable.
Mohamed Salah- 9/10 (MOTM)
The Egyptian King deserves all the crowns on his head. Arguably the best player in the world right now, he is reaching levels that very few wingers have ever reached in the Premier League.
Skipping past Cancelo and feeding Mane after a lung-busting run for the first goal was impressive in itself, but that was merely a glimpse of what was to come. Salah topped that off with wiggling between four City defenders, coming out unscathed and thundering the ball past Ederson with his weak foot.
His numbers inevitable, his moments unimaginable, Salah is priming to go down in the first page of all history books.
On the ball, there isn’t a better ‘keeper than Ederson, without an even speck of a doubt. Roll the clip for his pass to Foden and salivate. Dominant in the air and sweeping up every Liverpool attack with aplomb, the Brazilian was excellent. Unfortunately, he did have to pick the ball out of his net twice, through no fault of his own.
Kyle Walker- 7/10
Just as he is every week, Walker deserves a standard 7/10 for being a pillar of consistency once again. Marshalled Mane all evening, exuded composure on the ball and was faultless in the air.
Ruben Dias- 6/10
To be fair to Dias, Mane’s movement for Liverpool’s opener was unstoppable. But Jota’s spin and swivel floored the City skipper on the day as well which wasn’t a pretty sight. More or less, this was still a bankable display but a couple of notches below the clinic he dropped at the Bridge.
Honestly, Dias was just ‘fine’ at Anfield and if that doesn’t scream 6, what does?
In the first-half, both defensively and distribution wise, Laporte was stunning. In the second however, Mo Salah proved why he’s arguably the best player on the planet right now and annihilated the Spaniard to score the best goal we may see all season.
Just for that alone, his rating takes a massive hit.
Joao Cancelo- 7.5/10
From Cancelo’s sublime outside the boot pass to Foden to his patiently-executed through ball to De Bruyne, the Portuguese full-back was City’s standout creator in the first 45. Add to that a flawless defensive display and he was flying.
With Salah going supernova however, the Egyptian King did get the best of Cancelo once or twice in the second half (especially in the build-up to Mane’s opener), but all in all, the ex-Juve man was brilliant at both ends of the pitch.
Rodri deserves a statue just for literally putting his body on the line to produce the block of the century. Once again, the Spanish international continued his fine run of form with a spotless defensive display while passing between the lines with ease constantly.
Bernardo Silva vs. Liverpool:
-86.5% passing accuracy
-2/4 long balls completed
-1 key pass
-1 big chance created
-4/5 successful dribbles completed
-11/17 ground duels won
-4 fouls won
-1 interceptionhttps://t.co/X8YIHWOGEn pic.twitter.com/aoiaAqniHM
— Breaking The Lines (@BTLvid) October 3, 2021
That balletic run was as Messi-esque as it can get from Bernardo Silva and it deserved an assist, if only Foden had buried the ball first time. The Portuguese schemer’s ball-carrying was impeccable all evening while defensively, he could hand out a lesson or two to any box-to-box midfielder on the planet.
Sure, he got done by Salah once but that’s nit-picking errors from an astounding display.
Kevin De Bruyne- 6/10
It is imperative to caveat Kevin De Bruyne’s drop in form to two things. One, KDB is bound to take time to settle, considering his last start before the matches against PSG and Chelsea was for Belgium against Italy at the Euros. Secondly, Roberto Martinez has to take the blame for throwing De Bruyne in a crunch tie after a ligament tear, which seems to have aggravated what already was a serious injury.
With that being said, King Kevin was far from his flawless self, with passes going astray, left, right and centre while missing a gilt-edged header in the first half. Scoring the leveller salvaged his rating from what was a poor display in all honesty.
Gabriel Jesus- 6.5/10
The first 45 was one to forget for Jesus, considering City’s left-sided bias was in full flow with Cancelo and Foden joining forces. When involved, the right-winger was uncharacteristically sloppy, losing possession on numerous occasions.
But Gabby Jesus simply never goes down without a fight and a stellar assist for Foden’s equalizer capped off a decent outing for one of City’s best players this campaign.
Football Twitter is having a field day in crucifying Jack Grealish but it feels harsh to, considering he simply isn’t a false 9. And him veering out onto a wider left position, with any chance he could get was indicative of how uncomfortable he felt in a role that just felt foreign to City’s No.10. Nonetheless, it was a non-performance and he was deservedly hooked at the 65th minute.
Grealish takes? Reactionary. Played CF today (not easy is it 😂) – but he’s been one of City’s best players all season. Slotted in as a starter without a period to settle.
Only real critique is his final ball is lacking. Also thrives more when a left 8 runs in the space for him.
— Umir (@umirf1) October 3, 2021
Phil Foden- 9/10 (MOTM)
James Milner possibly had the worst game of his 19-year old career, thanks to a 21-year old. Phil Foden’s runs in behind were Leroy Sane-esque and his razor-sharp crossing simply missed the outstretched boot of a ruthless No.9.
A ferociously struck equalizer at Anfield is yet another incredible display in a big game for a lad who’s just getting started. And there is a strong argument to suggest that while Salah was unplayable in spells, Foden bossed proceedings throughout.
If it weren’t for his wastefulness in front of goal, this would be a 10/10 performance.