Liverpool’s 18 game unbeaten run in all comps came to an end against Swansea City as a lack of midfield creativity hampered Jurgen Klopp’s side.
How typical that in the space of eight days, Liverpool go from beating the Premier League leaders Manchester City to end their 30-game unbeaten run only to have their own 18-match unbeaten streak ended by the league’s lowest-ranked team.
That is the life of a Liverpool fan summed up, really. I am expecting a week of social media toxicity but I hope this result comes as a wake up call to Jurgen Klopp and co. With Philippe Coutinho sold, a creative midfield player is needed – and soon.
Loris Karius – 5
The German had very little to do in a game that the Reds really ought to have won. The goal was very much out of his control but having conceded, it’s difficult to rate him positively.
Joe Gomez – 6
Although it’s not his fault, Joe Gomez really wasn’t the right choice at right back with the young Englishman not blessed with the same natural attacking impetus that Trent Alexander-Arnold is.
Jurgen Klopp made a bad call not choosing Trent and suffered the consequences as Gomez looked to play the ball backwards over and over again. When he did play the ball into the box or forward into a teammates’ feet, it was often the wrong pass or wayward.
Joel Matip – 6
Had one or two good moments going forward and could have had a goal had Mo Salah’s flick to him not landed on his back.
Virgil van Dijk – 6
Good on the ball and beginning to strike up a promising partnership with Joel Matip. He could have had a goal in the first half from a corner but his glancing header flew wide of the Swansea goal.
The Dutchman really should have had an assist at the death but Roberto Firmino directed his header onto the post and let Swansea off the hook.
Andy Robertson – 6
Positive runs on the left flank provided an outlet for Liverpool but it seemed as though no matter how many times he fired the ball across the box, none of them were ever going to produce an assist.
Emre Can – 5
As good as Can was against Manchester City last week, the German was terrible at the Liberty Stadium. He lacked any precision with his passing and although he did well on occasion to break up play, he really failed to produce a spark from deep for Liverpool.
Georginio Wijnaldum – 5
As with Can, Wijnaldum crashed from the terrific highs of last week as he failed to break through the low block defending that Swansea predictably implemented.
Seeing as the former Newcastle United man used to be a winger, I really expect more in the way of creative midfield work but he is often uninspiring against lower table sides on the road.
Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain – 6
He might not have been great but I can definitely say that Chamberlain was better than his midfield counterparts despite the fact that he was subbed for Adam Lallana in the second half. He was good with set-piece delivery and looked to make driving runs through the midfield and was always positive, if unsuccessful on the whole.
Sadio Mane – 5
Poor from Mane after a resurgence in form in the last few weeks but the Senegal attacker was deprived of the ball in the areas he really thrives so I can understand why he was so ineffective as Swansea looked to constantly suffocate him of space.
Roberto Firmino – 5.5
Marginally better than Mane purely for his incredible work rate but he will be unable to sleep this week as the memory of hitting the post in the 93rd minute will haunt him for days.
When van Dijk found him the box with a delightfully chipped ball, I was certain he would bury his header but he couldn’t do more than hit the post.
Mohamed Salah – 6
Constantly worked space for himself and teammates but ultimately failed to affect the scoreline. Much like Mane, he wasn’t afforded space or given the kind of service that leads to clear cut goalscoring chances.