Check back soon for full Liverpool player ratings vs. Watford February 27, 2019
Finger, off panic button.
Liverpool faced a strong Watford team that was sitting 7th in the table and blew them out of the water 5-0. The offense rediscovered itself at Anfield, creating 19 shots with 10 on target.
Strong grades all around.
Jurgen Klopp (7) – It’s easy to question some of Klopp’s recent decisions. As soon as Naby Keita looks to be gaining confidence, Klopp sits him. Adam Lallana looks lively, and doesn’t see the field again. He needs to adjust in the second half against Manchester United, and is like, “Nee, alles gut zeichnen.” But Klopp had Liverpool ready today. Clearly. He was rewarded for his faith in Origi. Hard to question him today (although still basically did).
Alisson (9) – Had nothing to do all game then came up with two huge saves at the end to keep a clean sheet.
Trent Alexander-Arnold (10) – Why didn’t TAA start against United, again? The youngster showed how vital he is to the Liverpool attack in the 8th minute, delivering a pin-point perfect ball to Mane for a goal. Made a great overlap in the attacking third in the 14th minute and almost chipped an assist to Origi. Then in the 16th minute almost tallied another assist. And then…he assists Mane again on his ridiculous backheel goal. He delivered another perfect ball in the 30th minute that wasn’t capitalized on. Dude was on fire. Should’ve ripped a shot at the beginning of the second half but must’ve been looking for an assist-hat-trick. He eventually did get that assist-hat-trick with a perfect free kick headed in by Virgil van Dijk.
Virgil van Dijk (8) – Speaking of VVD! Quiet and tidy game until the end when he delivered a pin-point header for a goal. And then did it again off a Robbo ball.
Joel Matip (7) – Saved a goal in the 40th (see below) with a well-positioned clean-up. Didn’t get up the field as much as he had been but was solid in the back.
Andrew Robertson (6) – Not his best, not his worst. Lost his man in the 40th, almost leading to a Watford goal before Matip cleaned it up. Delivered a great ball to VVD’s second goal.
James Milner (8) – Had chance to rip a shot in the 5th minute and passed (literally), killing an opportunity. Otherwise he had a very Marcus Smart-esque game, doing lots of the loose ball dirty work needed to win a potentially challenging game. Subbed out in the 70th and earned the rest. He worked HARD.
Fabinho (8) – Killer game. Made an incredible all-ball tackle in the 27th minute to thwart an attack. Willingly took a long distance strike late in the first half. Also a quick tip of the cap to Fabinho for no Neymar-esque histrionics when he finds the ground.
Georginio Wijnaldum (6) – Happy to take a less prominent role as his frontline and wing backs went berserk and poured it on.
Divock Origi (7) – Strong work rate, like in the 32nd minute, helped slow Watford attacks. Earned a great goal in the 67th by staying strong on ball and timing his strike perfectly.
Sadio Mane (9) – What. A. Header. Mane got Liverpool on the board early with a much-harder-than-it-looked, perfectly executed header. And then…WHAT. A. BACKHEEL. Mane’s heavy first touch almost ruined an easy brace, then he back-heeled it in for a 2-0 lead. Was subbed out for Adam Lallana in the second half, but THAT BACKHEEL GOAL. Liverpool needed Mane or Salah to deliver and Mane did.
Jordan Henderson (N/R) – Came on in the 70th for Milner. Typical solid self.
Adam Lallana (N/R) – Subbed in for Sadio Mane. Looked like vintage Lallana, zipping around the pitch.
Naby Keita (N/R) – Came in for Gini late. Didn’t get to do much.