While Liverpool didn’t come away from Brentford with all three points, Jordan Henderson put in an excellent performance.
While he wasn’t quite at his defensive best, he showed that the Reds can create from midfield. This will hopefully keep many doubters quiet.
Brentford 3-3 Liverpool
The Reds travelled to the Brentford Community Stadium hoping to maintain their unbeaten start to the Premier League season. A win would have taken them three points clear at the top of the table.
While they remained unbeaten, the 3-3 draw means that they are only one point clear, and will stay that way until Brighton play on Monday night.
Brentford went 1-0 up after 27 minutes despite Liverpool’s dominance.
Yet Diogo Jota levelled things up four minutes later before Mohamed Salah restored normality nine minutes into the second half.
It was the Bees who struck next, through Valery Janelt, but Curtis Jones restored the lead after 67 minutes.
Liverpool had chances to seal the victory but failed to capitalize.
They regretted these missed opportunities when Brentford struck back once more through Yoane Wissa.
While Liverpool dominated possession, both sides had an equal share of the big chances.
Jurgen Klopp will be disappointed in how his side defended. We think, and hope, that it will be just a one-off.
While he will also be fuming with the inability to take chances, he cannot fault the team’s creativity.
Henderson caused Brentford problems
In total, Liverpool had 16 shots, with 15 chances created. Five of these can be considered “big” chances.
Liverpool captain Henderson was responsible for four of these chances, more than anybody else on the pitch.
This includes an assist for Diogo Jota’s goal.
After a strong underlapping run in behind the Brentford defence, the Englishman was picked out by Trent Alexander-Arnold out wide in yards of space. He took a look up and played a delightful first-time cross onto the head of Jota, who finished it off.
It was an inch-perfect cross, which just shows the vastly underrated quality that he has in his right boot.
He didn’t stop there, with three further chances created. Three of these were key passes.
Many Liverpool fans were concerned about the side’s lack of creative players in midfield heading into this game.
Harvey Elliott looked like he was going to make the advanced-midfield position his own before his horrific injury.
Then, Thiago and Naby Keita, who, granted, are not exactly massive chance creators, were also ruled out of the game.
So the age-old debate about Liverpool’s midfield creativity was reignited.
But Henderson showed against Brentford that when he is let off the leash, he can contribute in the final third.
We hope that he is let loose in this role more often in future. If so, we have no doubt that he will add to his two goal contributions so far this season.