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Arsenal 1 Liverpool 1 (Player Ratings)

A point at Arsenal is a more than acceptable result, particularly when it extends the unbeaten start to the season, but having taken the lead the Reds will be kicking themselves they were unable to hold on.

 

In truth though, they didn't play that well and a draw was a fair reflection of the game. With better finishing and a little more luck, however, one point would have been three.

 

The good:

 

The defence performed well, or at least three quarters of it did. The two centre backs were outstanding, while Andy Robertson was solid.

 

The bad:

 

Having looked like they were back on track after a couple of good showings against inferior opposition, the front three were poor and their final ball was back to being crap again. There were chances to exploit the space left behind the Arsenal defence but very rarely did we do it.   

  

 

Player ratings out of 10:

 

GK Alisson Becker, 5 - Flapped at a cross and was fortunate that Mkhitaryan’s header sailed just wide. Then he parried another cross back into the danger area but again escaped punishment. He looked uncharacteristically shaky throughout, although there wasn’t a great deal he could have done about the goal, which was a hell of a finish.   

 

DF Trent Alexander-Arnold, 4 - Started shakily when he was caught in possession in the opening minute, and that set the tone for a below par showing. Had Lovren been fit he probably wouldn’t have started, and it’s not difficult to see why. 

 

DF Joe Gomez, 8 - Cool, calm, collected. Made a vital boock early on to deny Aubamayeng and was pretty much faultless once again.

 

DF Virgil Van Dijk, 8.5 - Would have graded much higher had he taken one of the three great chances he had to score. Defensively imperious and a massive threat at the other end. Colossus.

 

DF Andy Robertson, 7.5 - Effective at both ends. Strong in defence where he made several timely interventions and blocks. Going forward he brought a save out of the keeper and delivered some good crosses.    

 

MF Fabinho, 5  - He’s looked good in the slower paced games against Red Star and Cardiff, but this was a real baptism of fire for him. Never got to grips with the pace of the game. Committed several fouls and made little impression with the ball. 

 

MF Georginio Wijnaldum, 6 - I actually forgot he was on the field at one point in the second half. He did pretty well in the first half, being typically neat and tidy and using his body to shield the ball.     

 

MF James Milner, 7 - More influential in the second half than the first and bagged a rare goal from open play when he arrived late in the box and drilled in a low shot after the keeper palmed Mane’s cross into his path. 

 

FW Robert Firmino, 5.5 - Unlucky not to score with a deft chip that hit the post in the first half, but that was about as good as it got for Bobby, who ended up dropping deeper and deeper to try and get involved. No surprise when he was subbed for Shaqiri with 20 minutes left.

 

FW Sadio Mane, 6 - Did very little in the first half aside from having a goal ruled out for offside. Involved a bit more after the break and played his part in Milner’s goal, but didn’t really go at the full back at all, which was disappointing.

 

FW Mohamed Salah, 6 - Looked sharp early doors and gave Arsenal plenty to think about down their left, but it rarely led to anything. It always felt as though he was about to do something significant, but it just never materialised. Had a chance to play Mane clean through late on, but inexplicably passed the ball straight to the covering defender, in what was almost an exact replica of what he did at Huddersfield two weeks ago.  

 

 

Substitutes:

 

FW Xherdan Shaqiri, NR -- Had one good run in behind the defence and managed to cut the ball back to Mane who shot just over, but otherwise made little impact.  

 

DF Joel Matip, NR - Replaced Salah with a minute left in stoppage time. What was the point? One of the more bizarre changes we’ve seen in years.

 

Manager Rating:

 

Jurgen Klopp, 6 - Went with the most sensible starting line up he could, but in hindsight either Lallana or (ideally) Shaqiri should have played instead of Fabinho, which would have allowed Wijnaldum to play in the number six role he has thrived in this season. Made a tactical switch at half time that looked like 4-4-1-1, but when the forwards aren’t on their game it doesn’t really matter what the system is.

 

 

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5 hours ago, tlw content said:

A point at Arsenal is a more than acceptable result, particularly when it extends the unbeaten start to the season, but having taken the lead the Reds will be kicking themselves they were unable to hold on.

 

In truth though, they didn't play that well and a draw was a fair reflection of the game. With better finishing and a little more luck, however, one point would have been three.

 

The good:

 

The defence performed well, or at least three quarters of it did. The two centre backs were outstanding, while Andy Robertson was solid.

 

The bad:

 

Having looked like they were back on track after a couple of good showings against inferior opposition, the front three were poor and their final ball was back to being crap again. There were chances to exploit the space left behind the Arsenal defence but very rarely did we do it.   

  

 

Player ratings out of 10:

 

GK Alisson Becker, 5 - Flapped at a cross and was fortunate that Mkhitaryan’s header sailed just wide. Then he parried another cross back into the danger area but again escaped punishment. He looked uncharacteristically shaky throughout, although there wasn’t a great deal he could have done about the goal, which was a hell of a finish.   

 

DF Trent Alexander-Arnold, 4 - Started shakily when he was caught in possession in the opening minute, and that set the tone for a below par showing. Had Lovren been fit he probably wouldn’t have started, and it’s not difficult to see why. 

 

DF Joe Gomez, 8 - Cool, calm, collected. Made a vital boock early on to deny Aubamayeng and was pretty much faultless once again.

 

DF Virgil Van Dijk, 8.5 - Would have graded much higher had he taken one of the three great chances he had to score. Defensively imperious and a massive threat at the other end. Colossus.

 

DF Andy Robertson, 7.5 - Effective at both ends. Strong in defence where he made several timely interventions and blocks. Going forward he brought a save out of the keeper and delivered some good crosses.    

 

MF Fabinho, 5  - He’s looked good in the slower paced games against Red Star and Cardiff, but this was a real baptism of fire for him. Never got to grips with the pace of the game. Committed several fouls and made little impression with the ball. 

 

MF Georginio Wijnaldum, 6 - I actually forgot he was on the field at one point in the second half. He did pretty well in the first half, being typically neat and tidy and using his body to shield the ball.     

 

MF James Milner, 7 - More influential in the second half than the first and bagged a rare goal from open play when he arrived late in the box and drilled in a low shot after the keeper palmed Mane’s cross into his path. 

 

FW Robert Firmino, 5.5 - Unlucky not to score with a deft chip that hit the post in the first half, but that was about as good as it got for Bobby, who ended up dropping deeper and deeper to try and get involved. No surprise when he was subbed for Shaqiri with 20 minutes left.

 

FW Sadio Mane, 6 - Did very little in the first half aside from having a goal ruled out for offside. Involved a bit more after the break and played his part in Milner’s goal, but didn’t really go at the full back at all, which was disappointing.

 

FW Mohamed Salah, 6 - Looked sharp early doors and gave Arsenal plenty to think about down their left, but it rarely led to anything. It always felt as though he was about to do something significant, but it just never materialised. Had a chance to play Mane clean through late on, but inexplicably passed the ball straight to the covering defender, in what was almost an exact replica of what he did at Huddersfield two weeks ago.  

 

 

Substitutes:

 

FW Xherdan Shaqiri, NR -- Had one good run in behind the defence and managed to cut the ball back to Mane who shot just over, but otherwise made little impact.  

 

DF Joel Matip, NR - Replaced Salah with a minute left in stoppage time. What was the point? One of the more bizarre changes we’ve seen in years.

 

Manager Rating:

 

Jurgen Klopp, 6 - Went with the most sensible starting line up he could, but in hindsight either Lallana or (ideally) Shaqiri should have played instead of Fabinho, which would have allowed Wijnaldum to play in the number six role he has thrived in this season. Made a tactical switch at half time that looked like 4-4-1-1, but when the forwards aren’t on their game it doesn’t really matter what the system is.

 

 

 

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Half points? It’s a whole new world!

 

I think 4 for Trent is harsh (although he certainly had a poor game). 4 means liability for me and he wasn’t quite that bad. Thought 5 for Alisson was a touch harsh too - especially as it was the same score Fabinho got, who I thought struggled throughout. 

 

Pretty much agree with the comments though.  

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Agree on the late substitution. Completely pointless and we still had a chance of winning the game. Even Matip looked embarrassed to come on. Wish we had Keita fit for that one. We needed his energy in the middle. I don't think its fair that people are writing Fabinho off. He has been excellent in the 2 games before and we are going to face sides who are set up to suit certain players. 

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12 hours ago, Paul said:

I think 4 for Trent is harsh (although he certainly had a poor game). 4 means liability for me and he wasn’t quite that bad. Thought 5 for Alisson was a touch harsh too - especially as it was the same score Fabinho got, who I thought struggled throughout. 

 

Have to disagree with you there, Paul.  Trent was targeted and was found wanting.  He was a liability the whole game.  He was slow to close down, slow to recover, slow to even react - I thought he could have reacted for their goal, giving the striker a second bite which he shouldn't have got.  Every dangerous play was down his side from the off.  I like the lad, of course I do, but he was awful.

 

To be fair to him, he didn't hide, which for a young lad is to his credit.  He was still receiving the ball in risky areas.

 

But overall I'd have given him 3.75 or 3.7834 at best.

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8 minutes ago, VERBAL DIARRHEA said:

You thought TAA merited the same as Gomes. Enough said.

They had Aubameyang on him and he coped reasonably well, so much so that he got took off with half an hour to go. Some also would say that Gomez could’ve done better with the goal, but in fairness Lacazette did very well to score that and Alisson made it easier for him by coming out unnecessarily. I didn’t think they were as good as Van Dijk and Robertson, didn’t think it would’ve been so offensive.

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4 minutes ago, VERBAL DIARRHEA said:

If you watched that game and thought TAA deserved the same mark as Gomes then I don’t really know what else to say. Opinions aye. 

Sure, but we’ve only really seen mine... and as per the norm of late, you’re giving the impression that you’re more interested in my views on our players, as opposed to the your own.

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TAA wasn’t at the races at all granted they are a decent enough side now. Gomes was good, again. Hard game for Fabinho but he has to start adapting quicker. VVD and Robertson were good, the midfield and forwards a bit meh! Probably Milner aside.

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