Jurgen Klopp goes with close to his best possible XI, though starting 22 year-old Caoimhin Kelleher was a surprise.
Curtis Jones earns a well-deserved goal in the 58th minute to put Liverpool through to the knockouts, 1-0.
The first half was open with plenty of chances created, but ended 0-0.
Here are Liverpool player ratings vs Ajax.
Liverpool starting XI vs Ajax
But first! Here’s the starting XI and erm bench.
Liverpool Player Ratings
Jurgen Klopp (7) –
Klopp hopefully has the boys in the right frame of mind for this one. We need to put the group away today. Klopp’s continued patience in Jones pays off, as the kid gives Liverpool the needed goal for advancement.
Caoimhin Kelleher (9) –
Yeah. So. Kelleher. Didn’t see that coming.
Comes up with a solid save off what was ultimately an off-side early. Then comes up HUGE in the 32nd minute with a solid stretched out effort. Another HUGE save to keep a clean sheet in the 88th.
Alisson-esque showing. Bravo.
Neco Williams (7) –
Needs to look as strong defensively as he does on his front foot. Grows with confidence as the game goes. Shows some really mature footwork and touch.
Fabinho (8) –
Was MotM when they played Ajax in October. Need a repeat performance today. So solid. Great steps, interceptions, and tackles in first half. Like Plastic Man, body parts blocking things everywhere.
Joel Matip (7) –
Very solid. His pairing with Fabinho feels natural. They work well together. Two lanky af smart dudes.
Andy Robertson (6) –
Not as confident or commanding a display as of late. Not a knock, just not up to his typically high standards.
Jordan Henderson (6.5) –
We’re always better with the captain on the pitch. Does seem a step behind in the first half (though not playing poorly). Booked for a smart tactical foul in stoppage.
Curtis Jones (8) –
Becoming a Klopp staple. Had a solid chance in the opening minutes that he should’ve been more clinical finishing. A much better effort a few minutes later off the woodwork. A full field dribble later in the half. Probably the Reds’ best in the first 45 (along with Fabinho).
Earns a well-deserved goal in the second half to put Liverpool up 1-0.
Gini Wijnaldum (6) –
One of those “where was Gini?” games. Did a lot of hard disruptive work without much to show for it.
Sadio Mane (6.5) –
Managed three shots but never threatening. Ajax amazingly dealt with his pace, kind of neutering his effectiveness.
Diogo Jota (6.5) –
Gets the call over Bobby, but don’t expect a full 90 from him. Still in form with an insane bring down, touch and earned free kick in the 34th. Was strong on the ball and his turns and link up were great. Not many efforts to goal though. Comes off at the 68th for Bobby.
Mo Salah (6) –
Plenty of opportunities but trying to set up his finishes too perfect. Just not tidy today. Good effort with no results.
Roberto Firmino (6) – Comes on for Jota. Strong dribbling out of traffic and linking up. Denied off a solid strike.
Rhys Williams (NR) – On very late for Salah to ice the game.
MAN OF THE MATCH
Tough call between Kelleher and Jones, but going with the goal-scoring scouser today.