Liverpool defeated Manchester City 4-3 in a thrilling encounter to hand Pep Guardiola’s side their first defeat of the Premier League season
Liverpool exacted revenge for their 5-0 humiliation at the hands of Manchester City earlier this season, by defeating the Cityzens 4-3 at the Anfield on Sunday.
An early goal from Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain set the tone for Jurgen Klopp’s side, but City bounced back through Leroy Sane’s strike before half-time. However, a nine-minute blitz in the second period saw Liverpool blow their opponents out of the water with three quickfire goals from Roberto Firmino, Sadio Mane and Mohamed Salah.
City did threaten a late comeback with two late goals from Bernardo Silva and Ilkay Gundogan, but Liverpool managed to hold on to their slender lead and inflict the first league defeat of the season on Pep Guardiola’s troops.
The win meant Liverpool moved into the third spot in the Premier League table, following Chelsea’s draw against Leicester City on Saturday. The Reds now sit level on 47 points with second-placed Manchester United, who play Stoke City on Monday night. And here’s how we rated the performances of the Liverpool players on the day;
— Premier League (@premierleague) January 14, 2018
Loris Karius: 6/10
Handed a surprise start over Premier League regular Simon Mignolet, the German shot-stopper started off well, showing good confidence and command against high balls. However, he was beaten at his near post for Sane’s goal in the first-half. Had no chance to stop the second or the third goals. A decent display, but not entirely convincing.
Joe Gomez: 6.5/10
Stayed back and tried to defend for most of the first-half without really offering a great deal going forward. Got caught under the ball, leading to City’s first big chance and the equalizer eventually. Improved after that one blip and also showed more adventure going forward as the game wore on.
Joel Matip: 7.5/10
A strong and sturdy display in the heart of the defence from the Cameroonian defender. Matip was alert to threat throughout the game and made several crucial blocks and interceptions to keep the dangerous Sergio Aguero under wraps.
Dejan Lovren: 6.5/10
Captaining the Liverpool side on the day, the Croatian international kept it simple at the back. Stepped out nicely on a couple of occasions to snuff out danger early. His passing was suspect at times though, and was partly at fault for City’s third goal.
Andrew Robertson: 8.5/10
Denied City an early chance at goal by making a key tackle on Aguero. Showed great energy throughout and made sure Raheem Sterling endured a difficult game on his return to Anfield. The highlight of the day for the Scotsman though, was the moment in the second half, when he went about harrying the City players starting from the halfway mark to all the way to their box. Received the loudest cheers.
Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain: 9/10
Great driving run and a brilliantly drilled effort into the bottom-left corner to open the scoring for Liverpool. Always looking to drive his team forward, going into challenges, winning second balls. Got the assist for Firmino’s goal with a great through ball. Man of the Match display from the summer signing, a great way to silence the doubters.
Only two players have made 5 successful tackles for either side so far:
Tough presence. pic.twitter.com/X1nRJqINUU
— Squawka Football (@Squawka) January 14, 2018
Emre Can: 8/10
The German international was on the heels of the City players from the get go, as he pressed them high and hard, setting the tone for his side early in the game. Covered ground brilliantly, did a sterling job of not allowing City to settle into a rhythm in the midfield. One of those performances that will make Liverpool supporters sad over the possibility of losing him on a free in the summer.
Georginio Wijnaldum: 8/10
Strong on the ball and vigilant without it, as he led Liverpool’s high press from the front. Showed tremendous legs and energy to keep running from box to box. Kept a close watch on Kevin De Bruyne throughout the game. One of the Dutchman’s better displays of the season.
Mohamed Salah: 8/10
Had the City backline troubled with his pace and directness, without really threatening a great deal in the first period, apart from a poked effort that went wide. Grew into the game after the break, as he won the ball before setting up Mane for Liverpool’s third goal, before showing some magical touch and a marvellous strike to make it four – his 24th goal of the season.
Roberto Firmino – 8.5/10
As always, the Brazilian’s work-rate off the ball, his pressing from the front, his link-up play with the rest of his teammates was top notch to say the least. Got his side back up and running, scoring the second goal with a delectable chipped effort, after holding off John Stones.
⚽️ Goals Scored This Season:
🇧🇷 Roberto Firmino: 17
🇧🇪 Romelu Lukaku: 15
🇪🇸 Álvaro Morata: 12
🇧🇷 Gabriel Jesus: 10
🇫🇷 Alexandre Lacazette: 8
🗣 "Liverpool need an out-and-out striker" 🤔 pic.twitter.com/dz2uUwnyzs
— SPORF (@Sporf) January 14, 2018
Sadio Mane: 8/10
The guilty party from the previous encounter between the two sides, the Senegalese winger redeemed himself for the red card at the Etihad, with a brilliant display at Anfield. Poor first touch meant he failed to capitalize after being sent through early on by Firmino, but was always a major threat on the break when Liverpool won the ball. Hit the post in the second half, before finding the back of the net with a well-struck left-footed shot from the edge of the box.
James Milner: 5/10
On for Can in the 78th minute. Looked nervy at times and conceded a free-kick very late in the game, which almost cost his side the three points. Booked.
Adam Lallana: N/A
Replaced Salah with less than five minutes left to play.
Ragnar Klavan: N/A
Injury time substitute for Mane.