Liverpool put in a commanding performance on Thursday night as they put Lincoln City to the sword in a 7-2 victory.

One of Liverpool’s most eye-catching players who also got on the scoresheet was Marko Grujic.

The Serbian international was making his first competitive start for the Reds in three years and it was good to have him back amongst the first-team.

Grujic, 24, was deployed as Liverpool’s layer of protection as the deep-lying midfield pivot. He was absolutely outstanding and completed more passes (90) than anyone on the pitch.

He also got his first Liverpool goal after his right-footed effort on the edge of the box was too hot to handle for Lincoln goalkeeper Alex Palmer.

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Lincoln City v Liverpool - Carabao Cup Third Round

LINCOLN, ENGLAND – SEPTEMBER 24: Divock Origi of Liverpool celebrates with teammate Marko Grujic after scoring his team’s seventh goal during the Carabao Cup third round match between Lincoln City and Liverpool at Sincil Bank Stadium on September 24, 2020 in Lincoln, England. Football Stadiums around United Kingdom remain empty due to the Coronavirus Pandemic as Government social distancing laws prohibit fans inside venues resulting in fixtures being played behind closed doors. (Photo by Peter Powell –

Defensive steel

Jurgen Klopp made 10 changes to the team that beat Chelsea at the weekend with Grujic the only naturally suited central midfielder on the pitch.

The German manager opted for a more attacking blend with the likes of Curtis Jones, Takumi Minamino, Harvey Elliott, Xherdan Shaqiri and Divock Origi all being utilised further up the field with Grujic sat in behind.

Grujic has a difficult task if he is to break into Klopp’s recognised starting XI. The addition of Thiago Alcantara complicates matters more for the Serb as Liverpool now have eight central midfielders – not including Grujic – on the club’s wage bill.

He had more touches on the ball (108) than any player on the pitch and even produced two key passes – bettered only by Xherdan Shaqiri. Defensively he chipped in, making one interception and also one tackle.

It was evidence of why a number of teams are looking to chase a deal for the Liverpool man who recently spent the last two seasons on loan in the Bundesliga with Hertha Berlin.

Grujic oozed quality and was able to control the tempo of the match and dictate when and how Liverpool would begin their attacks. If an offer doesn’t come in for Grujic then there is no reason that he cannot continue to help Klopp in the domestic cup competitions this season.

He has certainly given Klopp a lot to think about following such an assured and accomplished performance.

Lincoln City v Liverpool - Carabao Cup Third Round

LINCOLN, ENGLAND – SEPTEMBER 24: Marko Grujic of Liverpool battles for possession with Liam Bridcutt of Lincoln City during the Carabao Cup third round match between Lincoln City and Liverpool at Sincil Bank Stadium on September 24, 2020 in Lincoln, England. Football Stadiums around United Kingdom remain empty due to the Coronavirus Pandemic as Government social distancing laws prohibit fans inside venues resulting in fixtures being played behind closed doors. (Photo by Peter Powell –

Reaction

Here is a look at how Liverpool fans reacted to Grujic’s performance.

 

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