Liverpool are desperate to recover from the loss to Man City with a emphatic win over fellow Premier League top-4 challengers Leicester City. Despite a pretty decent performance, damning defensive mistakes saw them fall to a 1-3 loss – basically gifting Brendan Rodgers’ side three points on the day.
The Reds started the game in emphatic fashion, playing some of the ‘heavy-metal soccer’ which Jurgen Klopp made famous and piling the pressure on the hosts. However, they weren’t clinical enough to finish chances and were a bit fortunate not to go into half-time trailing after Jaime Vardy hit the bar minutes before the break.
After a lot of back and forth, Liverpool finally broke the deadlock in the 67th minute when Mo Salah cleverly placed the ball into the back of the net to give his side the lead. Just as it looked that LFC will get the win, Thiago Alcantara made an unnecessary foul just outside the box in the 80th – leading to James Maddison equalizing from the resulting free-kick after the ball went through everyone inside the box.
And then a comedy of errors saw Alisson slam straight into debutant Ozak Kabak outside the box, gifting an easy goal for Jamie Vardy to put Leicester into the lead a minute later. Leicester then piled even more misery on the Reds, with Harvey Barnes making it 3-1 with a smart finish from close.
Liverpool might end the gameweek 13 points behind Man City, but if they don’t solve this soon, they could soon endure their top-4 ambitions go down in flames as well.
Liverpool Player Ratings vs Leicester
Jurgen Klopp (5.0) –
For most of the game it looked like Klopp has reinvigorated the fire in his player’s bellies as Liverpool played some brilliant stuff in the first half and towards the start of the second-half as well. The pressing, attacking movement and moves were all great – but his players were just not clinical enough after creating a gazillion chances.
Ultimately, defensive mistakes let him down again and he can’t even really blame debutant Kabak as Alisson was equally at fault for the misery. His substitutions made no impact again and couldn’t do anything to get a point out of the game. Klopp knows he’ll need to work hard to chalk off these defensive mistakes and make his team ruthless again.
Alisson (3.0) –
After last week’s nightmare, Alisson was almost embarrassed right in the 1st minute after Maddison found him off his goal-line, but lucky to hold onto it. Makes a decent stop to deny Vardy’s header in the 36th. Stands tall to deny Vardy again in the 45th with a clever save.
After seemingly redeeming himself, the Brazilian makes another inexplicable error – unnecessarily coming off his line and slamming into Kabak outside the box – leading to Vardy’s goal. Something is really off with him right now.
Trent Alexander-Arnold (4.0) –
Trent makes a fantastic through pass to send Mane through in the 3rd, only to see him waste it. Struck a perfect freekick in the 56th but unlucky to see his curler hit the post! But again struggled defensively, not being able to keep up with Barnes and losing a lot of key duels at the back. His attacking game might be superb, but Trent’s defensive vulnerabilities are starting to cost his side.
Ozan Kabak (3.5) –
The Turkish star gets his LFC debut and faces a stern challenge against Vardy. Kabak actually looked pretty strong and won most of the duels against Vardy, but then Alisson spoilt his decent debut by colliding with him to save a long pass when it looked Kabak actually had things covered. Lost confidence from that and allowed Barnes through for his strike.
Jordan Henderson (5.0) –
Hendo has a strong start to the game, making an incredible long-pass to create Salah’s chance early on. But lucky to see Vardy blast a shot straight into the post after he seemingly played him through on goal minutes before the break.
He played like the Hendo of last season for quite sometime, being absolutely everywhere on the pitch to force things. But that momentum went down after watching the horrible second goal. Still doesn’t look convinced or confident playing as a defender.
Andy Robertson (6.0) –
Robbo looks much more raving with positive energy today. Burst into the box and struck a venomous shot in the 39th, but his shot was deflected just wide. Looked much better with his surging forward runs but his final product was poor. Not really at fault for any goal really.
James Milner (N/R) –
Milner is an interesting pick today, coming in for Thiago. After a decent start, he got injured early on and subbed for Thiago in the 17th.
Gini Wijnaldum (5.5) –
Playing as the most defensive midfielder again today and did a decent job to keep a lid on Maddison in the first half apart from one moment when he played Vardy through on goal. But kinda lost control of him in the second half, struggling to keep up with his movement and unable to stop the Englishman from sparking the comeback.
Curtis Jones (6.5) –
The young midfielder looks a sparky figure in midfield again, making crunching challenges to recover possession and getting the ball forward smartly. Another tenacious performance from Jones, who worked hard to help his side dominate possession but lacked that special something with his final product.
Mo Salah (5.5) –
Mo’s having a sloppy start to the game and wasted a glorious scoring chance in the 9th after making a brilliant run behind the defence, only to mess up his close control during a 1v1 situation with Schmeichel. Then hits a volley way wide from a promising position in the 16th.
Once again sent through on goal in the 20th, but could only parry a shot well squad into the middle after being closed down by Schmeichel, only to see nobody convert it. After missing all those chances, he didn’t miss in the second half – delicately placing Firmino’s pass into the back of the net.
Couldn’t redeem a point for his side after Leicester went ahead, sloppily losing possession leading to their third. He might’ve gotten the goal, but his overall game was underwhelming again.
Roberto Firmino (7.0) –
The Brazilian came alive in the 26th inside the ball, box his attempted dink from close was saved by Schmeichel. Then had a decent scoring chance in the 61st, but his header was deflected wide. Produces a beautiful assist for Salah’s goal, making an incredible backheel pass to set up his teammate’s strike. Got little to no delivery inside the box and ultimately saw his gorgeous assist gone to waste.
Sadio Mane (5.5) –
Mane looks to be raging to make a statement today, being much more proactive in the final third. Could’ve done better to score from Salah’s shot/pass in the 21st from open range. Makes a brilliant forward run in the 44th before being piled down outside the box, but the freekick from a promising area was poor.
His movement was dangerous but Mane again lacked that ruthlessness in the final third.
Thiago Alcantara (3.0) –
Thiago came on for the injured Milner and couldn’t be that spark in attack which LFC needed him to be. Lost possession quite a few times and ultimately gave away the sloppy free-kick leading to Maddison’s equalizer. Brought nothing ‘special’ to LFC today and his defensive vulnerability ultimately attracted the comeback from Leicester.
Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain (N/R) –
Brought to calm things down when the score was 1-0, but could only be a spectator as his side went down to a 3-1 loss.
Xherdan Shaqiri (N/R) –
Came in too late to make a difference and his crosses couldn’t really make any impact.
MAN OF THE MATCH
Yeah nobody from Liverpool shined out here. James Maddison gets this for orchestrating that comeback with a nice freekick.