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Football News: Liverpool v Burnley - A Liverpool Perspective

Liverpool v Burnley - A Liverpool Perspective
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Liverpool v Burnley A Liverpool Perspective

 

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This game was almost routine, though there was only one goal in it for a long period, Burnley never looked like scoring. In fact, they never made a genuine chance in the second half until after they were 2-0 down, when it seemed the Liverpool centre-backs lost a bit of focus for a while. It is difficult to even pick a single negative out from this game, other than the possibility that Tsimikas might have picked up a shoulder injury. All this despite the supposedly weak midfield missing three players.

 


Burnley

 

They came with their usual physicality and direct football, but it was interesting to see that they were much more positive than usual. Their good recent results at Anfield have obviously given them confidence that they could get a result and they pressed much higher than usual. That was probably their undoing, it left gaps for Liverpool to exploit. It made for a much better game to watch than the usual games but I doubt we will get to see it again, as I very much doubt Dyche would make that mistake again.

Actually, I very much doubt we will see Dyche in charge of Burnley at Anfield again, sadly. Despite the miracles he achieves each year there, the new owners are placing a lot of pressure on him and his contract expires in the summer. Without providing him with funding to take them further, which does not look to be happening, I cannot see any reason for him to stay. Losing Dyche will be something the Clarets will live to regret.

 


Liverpool

 

Klopp - took a risk in throwing in Elliott against the most physical side in the Premier League and it certainly worked out for him. Added to that, whatever he did at half-time certainly worked, as Liverpool took charge in the second half and really cranked up the pressure on Burnley. Even Sean Dyche said afterwards that there is just nothing you can do when Liverpool play like that.

 

Alisson - he really looks like he is back to his best. Pulled out a fantastic save and only made one misjudgement in the entire 90 minutes. Admittedly that could have resulted in a goal, but thus is the life of a goalkeeper! As it was, Tarkowski missed and Alisson's performance can be rightly applauded.

 

Alexander-Arnold - I am shocked people are still criticising his defending, the lad was exceptional once again yesterday and showed signs of massive improvement in his defending. There was at least one occasion that he rescued the situation by getting back and another when he and Matip worked together to win the ball back, which was a well-timed shoulder-to-shoulder challenge. His forward play is pure brilliance, I guess whiny people just have to make up something to moan about, rather than just be grateful the best right-back in world football is the Scouser in the team.

 

Matip - had a very good game, there were a couple of moments he had to recover after being caught, but he has just come back from a long-term injury, so that is to be expected. Matip has grown into a top class defender and his partnership with van Dijk makes you feel safe, no matter who the opposition. But he also has the ability to pick a pass, which makes it very difficult for opponents to shut van Dijk's passing down. If they are shutting van Dijk down, Matip has space and time to pick a pass or stride out from the back.

 

van Dijk - having him and Matip at the back is such a huge boost for the team and allowed Liverpool to go 2 v 2 at the back against Burnley's attack and still shut them out of the game. And those pinpoint diagonal passes are almost as important to the team as his defensive ability.

 

Tsimikas - the understudy is beginning to look as good as the first choice. What a game he had. He does sometimes lose focus, maybe suffers from trying too hard to impress at times, but his crossing can be absolutely first class, like his one for the goal, and Tsimikas gives everything. That moment, just after he had hurt his shoulder, when he fought for the ball even while on the floor, against three Burnley players, and won, is a moment that will have won the heart of most Liverpool fans. If there is one thing we love as fans, it is seeing one of the players fighting for the shirt and he definitely does that. Robertson really does have a battle on his hands for the left-back berth this season!

 

Henderson - the team looked so much better balanced in midfield for this game and it was in large part due to having Henderson in the deepest slot. Despite that role, he still managed to get forward a fair bit.

 

Keita - last week was a big step forward in performances, this week it was another. He is still not the finished article, he did play a lax ball or two, but he is finally starting to look like the player we thought Liverpool had bought. He was much more active getting back in this game and got his foot in when he could. All in all, a very good performance.

 

Elliott - this lad could become the new darling of the Kop very easily. Despite Burnley clearly trying to unsettle him with some late challenges, he just shrugged it off and got on with it. His touch is excellent, which is why the defender had to drop off with the runner on the second goal. If there had been hope of a loose touch, the defender would have closed him down. Such a shame that Salah's goal from his pass was ruled out for offside because his lovely pass will now be forgotten, when it deserves to be remembered.

 

Mane - really does look back to his best and got a goal at last too. Hopefully it will be the start of him refinding his scoring boots, because he missed a fair few chances before scoring. The one thing that always impresses me with Mane in full flow is his ability to hold off opponents before suddenly producing a moment of skill and leaving them in his wake. That was on full show against the Clarets.

 

Salah - he looks so sharp right now, it must be terrifying to go into games as a defender when he is in this kind of form. His movement is excellent, he drags defenders all over the place and is constantly forcing them into positions they do not want to be in. Just to top it off, when the full-back did manage to get forward Salah was hounding him.

 

Jota - you watch him and he will have a loose touch, make a poor pass and you start to wonder if he really is the right man for this team. Then he gets in the box, his movement is brilliant and his finishing is clinical. Once he scores, which is becoming almost routine, suddenly his touch and passing improve too. Playing him up top does put more pressure on the midfield and defence, as he wants to be where he can score rather than getting involved in the build up, but it is working out well so far. It will be interesting to see if Klopp sticks with him against the big boys of the league or goes back to the tried and trusted front three to aid in ball retention.

 

Firmino - replaced Jota in the 81st minute. Was unable to really get into the game.

 

Thiago - came on in place of Keita in the 81st minute. He did get a lot more involved than Firmino managed, but that was because of the way the game was going and his role helped to see out the game.

 

Gomez - took Tsimikas' spot on 90+2 minutes. It was great to see him back, though he barely got his tracksuit off before the game finished!

 

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Written by Tris Burke August 22 2021 05:35:49

 

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