Mohamed Salah underperforms once again as Liverpool slump to their sixth consecutive defeat at Anfield on Sunday.
Liverpool’s misery at home continues as they slump to yet another defeat – this time, at the hands of relegation-threatened Fulham. The 1-0 defeat at Anfield was their sixth consecutive loss at home – the worst run of form in the club’s history.
It was an all too familiar story for the Liverpool fans, as their team struggled to create clear cut opportunities despite several changes in the teamsheet, including a welcome start for Diogo Jota and Naby Keita. Fulham also deserve credit for changing their usual approach, with Scott Parker employing a deep defensive block that kept frustrating the home side.
Their goalkeeper Alphonse Areola was in inspiring form, making a couple of very important saves to retain his clean sheet. From an attacking aspect, the Cotaggers did provide a threat on the counter as well, though the goal came from an unlikely manner as Mohamed Salah’s late attempted clearance paved the way for Mario Lemina to score the opener, just before half-time.
The Reds were the better side, piling on the pressure in the second half, but simply couldn’t find that telling breakthrough as Fulham held firm. Here, at The Hard Tackle, we will take a closer look at how the Liverpool players performed in their yet another disappointing defeat at Anfield this weekend.
Alisson made an important save to deny Josh Maja from troubling the Liverpool net. Apart from that, the goalkeeper looked solid, although, in truth, he didn’t have to do much for the most part, especially in the second half. Couldn’t have done anything to save the effort from Lemina either, as the defence around him was poor.
Neco Williams: 5/10
Neco Williams had a difficult start to the game, often getting outshone by the opposing full-back in Ola Aina. He made more offensive inroads in the second half, often making darting runs along the flanks. His crosses, however, were far from accurate while the young right-back also needs to work on his defensive output.
Ademola Lookman completed four take-ons in the first half against Liverpool, two more than everyone else on the pitch combined.
Causing Neco Williams all sorts of problems. pic.twitter.com/jqpHEXhCz7
— Squawka Football (@Squawka) March 7, 2021
Nat Phillips: 5/10
It is about time Jurgen Klopp starts considering Ben Davies as Nat Phillips is simply not quality enough to add that little extra creativity in the team’s build-up. His non-progressive passes didn’t help Liverpool in penetrating the opposing defence, with the attack mostly appearing reliant on crosses into the box.
Rhys Williams: 5/10
Rhys Williams returned to the side, in the absence of Ozan Kabak and looked nervy under pressure. He only had a decent second half because of Fulham’s shift in dynamics thanks to the late first-half goal that provided Parker’s men with the incentive of employing a deep defensive line.
Andrew Robertson: 5.5/10
As the most experienced defender in the four-man backline, Andrew Robertson struggled to stand out as the star performer this evening. The left-back looked quite restricted in regards to his offensive movements, perhaps due to the vulnerable nature of the two central defenders. It ultimately hurt Liverpool’s creativity in the final third as his crosses could certainly have made a difference.
James Milner: 6/10
James Milner replaced Thiago Alcantara in the middle of the park, offering more motivation and dynamism compared to his Spanish teammate. However, it wasn’t enough to inspire his team into making a comeback in the second half, with the veteran midfielder eventually being subbed off during the final phase of the game.
Georginio Wijnaldum: 6/10
Georginio Wijnaldum was one of few players who managed to retain his place in the side after the narrow defeat to Chelsea. The Dutchman was assured in possession, losing the ball only once in midfield. However, his contributions in possession were mostly meaningless as Fulham did well to close down any space to his passing options.
Naby Keita: 7/10
Naby Keita is one of the main positives today. Showed his flair, grit and dynamism.
If he keeps his fitness up, we have a player on our hands. pic.twitter.com/az4XRa8JAs
— Nasir (@LFCNxsir) March 7, 2021
Naby Keita was the only real positive spark for Liverpool in this otherwise dire performance. Coming in for Curtis Jones, the former RB Leipzig player made a solid impression with his ball-progression, tenacity and willingness to take on the opposing defenders. Showed hunger that was missing from most of his teammates and certainly deserves a chance against his former side in the next match.
Xherdan Shaqiri: 6.5/10
Xherdan Shaqiri was a surprise inclusion in the team, but one who couldn’t make any impact on the proceedings. He looked quite ineffective on the ball and only caused threat from set-pieces, in the absence of Trent Alexander-Arnold. Moves one step closer to a likely exit from Anfield in the upcoming summer transfer window.
Mohamed Salah: 6/10
Mohamed Salah spearheaded the Liverpool frontline in the absence of both Sadio Mane and Roberto Firmino. The Egyptian had promising moments going forward but was horribly dispossessed just around the edge of the Liverpool penalty area, with the turnover leading to Fulham’s winner. Not good enough.
Salah blanks for the 4th #PL match in a row 👀
— Fantasy Premier League (@OfficialFPL) March 7, 2021
Diogo Jota: 6/10
Diogo Jota showcased some of his brilliance, at times, with some excellent touches while snap-shooting quality was also useful. However, the former Wolves star simply wasn’t involved enough in the proceedings, getting dispossessed 14 times out of his 46 touches in this game. Needs more game-time to settle in.
Sadio Mane: 6/10
Sadio Mane finally came onto the pitch in the 62nd minute, replacing Wijnaldum. It didn’t make any difference to the complexion of the game though as the winger was fairly quiet, barring a header that was agonisingly close to finding the back of the net.
Trent Alexander-Arnold: 6/10
Trent Alexander-Arnold replaced Williams during the final phase of the game, offering some good movements in the final third. It was too little too late though.
A late replacement for Milner, who added some assurance in possession and helped Liverpool make a final push for the equaliser.