Job done as far as Jurgen Klopp and Liverpool are concerned. Sometimes wins with low margins just give a team a whole lot of confidence, and even though Liverpool won by just one goal scored by Sadio Mane, they looked convincing and in the driver’s seat throughout. They weren’t tested much and poor finishing and final third passing from the Eagles made sure one goal was enough for Liverpool. Crystal Palace will go out there next time still in hunt for their first win whereas Liverpool scripted their first win tonight rather comfortably.
Here are our Liverpool players’ ratings –
Simon Mignolet – 8/10
Came out of his line when required, collected and neatly kept. Wasn’t really troubled by the Palace frontmen as they had just one shot on target.
Joseph Gomez – 8.5/10
Played a composed game, smashed in key crosses in the box and is a proud reason for the clean sheet. Also, stayed out of doubt as he made quite a few clearances.
Ragnar Klavan – 8/10
Tidy work and clean sheet secured. Klavan was a massive presence in the centre of the Liverpool defence and while going forward too, posed a threat with some good physicality. Avoided crosses by winning the ball and clearing it.
Joel Matip – 8.5/10
Stood his ground, made quite a few crunching tackles and stayed composed throughout the game. The heart of the defence paired up really well with Klavan and helped the team to victory.
Andrew Robertson – 10/10
The most all round performance so far this season, which had a flavour of everything. For a debutant, to go out there and express himself takes courage and concentration, which he mastered. Defensively, he kept one of the better wingers in the league quiet, Andros Townsend. Offensively, he powerfully shot at goal and linked up with Mane, but the highlight of his game was his delivery into the box. Might just become a regular starter.
Jordan Henderson – 8/10
Fed the long balls beautifully to the vibrant Mane and Firmino, certainly played a captain’s role. He kept the passes going, always in the forward direction and along with that, protected his centre backs.
James Milner – 7/10
Playing in the midfield today, he had an average game. He tested Hennessey once by making a beautiful run inside the box and side-footing a through ball from Robertson but apart from that, he needed to fill the boots of Can who makes 30-yard runs and make his presence felt inside the box.
Georginio Wijnaldum – 7/10
Wasn’t at his best, as he would support the front 3 who try to manipulate defences because Liverpool don’t have a target man. He didn’t look as sharp and lacked creativity in his passing. But, he made key interceptions and provided excellent work rate.
Roberto Firmino – 8.5/10
Didn’t get his goal, but was involved in cheeky one-twos which bamboozled the Palace defence, which was trying to park the bus with 6 at the back. Looked hungry and had most shots by a Liverpool player.
Sadio Mane – 9.5/10
Sharp, quick to react and effective, he has been a revelation for the Reds since quite some time now. Although they got lucky in their goal, he was the quickest to react and still had the composure to finish off with ease.
Daniel Sturridge – 6.5/10
Given the start by Klopp, Sturridge was expected by many to make an impact. Although good at dribbling and keeping the ball close to the body, he must be in the box. He cannot come back and wait for a pass, which indeed killed some of the penetration that could have happened. For instance, when Milner took a shot which was saved, Sturridge was not even in the 18-yard box. Not expected by a centre forward and hence creates too much asking from Mane and Firmino’s creativity.
Dejan Lovren – 5/10
Defender for a forward, a strategy applied in the dying minutes of the game to coat the defence or to kill time. Lovren was a part of this and added an extra head inside the box, keeping it safe from the crosses and long balls.
Dominic Solanke – 8/10
Looks like a prospect, a man for the future. He looked confident, tested the keeper once and tried a couple of cheeky flicks to spice up the game.
Mohamed Salah – 9/10
Absolute threat! He kept the ball going forward, every time he touched it. Be it a header or a curler, he tested Hennessey and shared a creative chemistry with Mane and Solanke. Almost sealed it for Liverpool with his shooting.