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Football News: Newcastle United v Liverpool - A Liverpool Perspective

Newcastle United v Liverpool - A Liverpool Perspective
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Newcastle United v Liverpool A Liverpool Perspective


Games like that are not good for my heart! Liverpool never do things the easy way that is for sure. You have to give credit to Newcastle for giving it a go when there was no real reason for them to do so, but they never gave up. They are well organised and well drilled but they just lack the quality at critical moments and badly missed Almiron, who has the quality to make things happen in the final third.

Liverpool looked tense, players were trying too hard to make a difference, rather than just playing their usual game. That caused a few errors, a lot of them in dangerous areas. Added to that the players kept trying too hard to hide their tenseness by pretending to be calm and stroke the ball around at the back. I would have preferred to see the ball played around midfield in the opposition half, where the risks are lower.

The worst performance was the referee though. He was terrible. Ritchie got away with a number of nasty challenges on Salah throughout the game, the final goal came from a free kick to Liverpool that almost certainly was just a slip by Fabinho, Perez was falling over every time the wind changed and half the time the ref was giving him the decision etc. 'Dre' had a stinker.


Benitez - got his team well up for the match and they never let their heads drop. Just lacks the quality of player to take advantage of an opponent that was not at their best. His team pressed well when the moment beckoned and dropped off when it was the right time to do so. Rating: 7.


Dubravka - he started off really well when he first arrived but he is now starting to look less impressive. Seems to be having a few struggles with the physical nature of the Premier League. There were a couple of times he could have come for balls played into the box but he stayed on his line. Rating: 5.


Manquillo - the best performance I have ever seen from Manquillo. Though that is not saying much as he is usually awful! However he was decent, actually made an effort and got forward well but did not neglect his defensive duties either. Rating: 6.


Schar - Schar must be incredibly frustrating to manage as he can do something brilliant one second and the next he does something incredibly stupid. He makes basic errors in defensive positioning, then suddenly picks off a pass he has no right to read and runs the ball down to the other end. It seems to be a lack of mental discipline, which also leads to moments like the silly booking he picked up for no reason. If he sorts that out he will be a big player for Newcastle next season. Rating: 6.5.


Lascelles - makes far too many basic errors for my liking, such as on the first goal when he completely lost van Dijk before slipping over. His positioning is questionable at best and he did not deal well with Liverpool's attack. Rating: 4.


Dummett - he gives his all and never gave the Liverpool attack an easy ride. However he was just unable to deal with the runs from midfield and he was out of his depth when Salah was able to isolate him. Rating: 5.5.


Ritchie - dealt with Salah by leaving one on him and it was successful initially. Eventually he was caught out getting forward and Salah started to get in behind him. On the ball he offers good delivery and pace, lots of workrate, but lacks intelligent movement. Rating: 6.


Perez - when he stays on his feet he is a real problem for defenders, with good fast feet and twists and turns on the ball. Not the most clinical of finishers and lacks that little something that marks out the truly top players from the rest, but he is a real handful. He has really good movement off the ball, makes good runs which cause real problems. Rating: 7.


Hayden - gets up and down the pitch really well. Broke into the box to provide numbers and cause the defence problems, also was always willing to get back to try and help defend. His lack of ability on the ball was a problem though. Rating: 5.


Ki - lacks mobility and wasted possession a couple of times with shots from ridiculous range that had no hope of going in. Rating: 4.5.


Atsu - he does some brilliant things but then just gives the ball away as he has absolutely no end product at all. Yet he still managed to come up with a goal! Football truly is a funny old game. Rating: 3.


Rondon - holds the ball up brilliantly, has excellent workrate and was a handful all night long for the defence. Scored a cracker as well. He was the focal point for the whole team. Rating: 8.



Muto - replaced Schar after 90+1 minutes. Never really had time to do anything much, but he does give it a real go even in just a few seconds of pitch time. Rating: 5.5.


Klopp - not about the choice of Sturridge, nor was I impressed that he stayed on the pitch despite his abysmal performance, but it worked. His bravery to go for it with the substitution of Lovren for Milner was rewarded. Rating: 6.


Alisson - was constantly put under pressure on the ball as the defence messed around far too much at the back for my liking. Was not at his best on the ball in the first half when Liverpool allowed Newcastle to peg them back in their own half for spells on the ball. Once they pushed further forward and played in Newcastle's half he was much happier acting as a sweeper. Rating: 5.5.


Alexander-Arnold - his delivery is superb and he picked up more assists due to it. He does struggle defensively but his contribution going forward meant that Atsu would often get in behind but find himself isolated, due to most of his team-mate's being pegged back. Rating: 8.5.


Lovren - Rondon gave him a really hard time. He also was not doing well on the ball, particularly when under pressure. He did keep going and did not make it easy for Rondon, but he really struggled to cope with Rondon's power. However he needs to look to play it out or forward not put Alisson into trouble. Rating: 4.5.


van Dijk - did a much better job on the few occasions Rondon strayed into his area of the pitch, beating him to headers, compared to Lovren. His goal was an excellent towering header. However, he is still not spotting runners from deep, Perez ran past him a number of times without him reacting at all. Nice decision to tell Shaqiri to take the free kick at the end as well. Rating: 6.


Robertson - had a really good game, did some excellent closing down and really put them under pressure on his side of the pitch. His workrate made a huge difference to the result as they got no rest on his side. Rating: 8.


Wijnaldum - did a good job of stopping the Newcastle players on the side of the pitch he was on, but looked really tense on the ball and was not at his best on the ball at all. Looked like a player who was trying too hard against his former team at times. Rating: 6.


Henderson - had a poor game, especially in the first half when on the right, and the team looked so much better when he swapped sides with Wijnaldum. He was trying so hard to get forward that he was leaving gaps behind him and not getting back in time or into the right positions. Rating: 3.5.


Sturridge - he did play a couple of nice passes, including one lovely backheel, but the rest of his game was terrible. He pulled out of challenges when the ball was his to win but he bottled contact. Barely made an effort to press, despite Klopp screaming at him from the sidelines to work. When he got the ball on a chance to break he wasted the moment by sauntering along holding onto the ball too long. His performance overall was disgraceful and cowardly. Rating: 0.5.


Mane - always a menace, causes havoc and works hard. Just lacked a goal. Rating: 7.


Salah - despite Ritchie attempting to hobble him a couple of times, he was threatening to score all game and did before needing to be taken off after being clattered by the keeper, accidentally. Rating: 8.


Fabinho - not at his best, struggled to get his passing going. Always tried to make himself available but the press gave him little time or space. Rating: 6.



Shaqiri - replaced Wijnaldum after 66 minutes. Worked hard and put the ball in for the third. Rating: 6.5.

Origi - was brought on for the injured Salah in the 73rd minute. What a talent this lad has for those last gasp goals! He might offer little else, but he is worth every penny for them. Rating: 6.5.

Milner - brought on in the 83rdth minute for Lovren. He came on to do one role, but the game changed and he had a completely different job to do. As usual he is ultra reliable. Rating: 5.5.


Just to explain my ratings. I have gone for what I believe is more simple than the usual of totting up points. I have decided to go with 5 as having no effect on the game other than being a body on the pitch. Anything below 5 is a player who had a negative effect on his team and anything above 5 as a positive effect. So a goal scored would be a positive effect and add to the rating, whereas giving away a penalty with a needless challenge would take away from it.

Written by Tris Burke May 05 2019 21:06:05


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