While Sadio Mane took the headlines following Liverpool’s 1-0 win over Everton, it was Ragnar Klavan who deserved the most plaudits.
Mane netted in the 94th minute to seal the Reds’ derby-day victory, restoring their hopes of a Premier League title challenge in 2016/17.
As Jurgen Klopp‘s side get back to winning ways, the German has seen a number of top-class performances from peripheral figures, with the resilience of his squad shining through.
At Goodison Park, this largely came from Klavan, who was both This is Anfield’s Man of the Match and, providing their ratings after the game, also the supporters’ choice.
The Estonian was rated at 8.4, ensuring he was the only player to score above an 8 in what was a dogged team display.
Just behind Klavan were Mane and Dejan Lovren, who both received a rating of 7.6, while Daniel Sturridge, whose rebounded effort led to the winner, was rated at 7.4.
Jordan Henderson and James Milner (both 7) were the only other players rated over a 7, with the Reds struggling to break down a robust Everton defence on the night.
Simon Mignolet (6.9), Nathaniel Clyne (6.9) and Georginio Wijnaldum (6.5) all fared reasonably, however.
Adam Lallana (6.3), Divock Origi (6.1) and Roberto Firmino (6) were all quiet, and were rated accordingly, while Emre Can and Lucas Leiva (both 6) had little time to make their mark from the bench.
Liverpool have moved back up to second in the Premier League table after their win at Goodison, ensuring Jurgen Klopp and his squad can enjoy their Christmas break.
They’re back in action on December 27, when they welcome Stoke City to Anfield, before another home clash on New Year’s Eve, against Manchester City.
Victory over City will be vital, and with Joel Matip still struggling with an ankle injury, Klopp may need to continue to call upon Klavan alongside Lovren.
On Monday night’s performance, this should be no concern to Klopp, who can trust his £4.2 million summer signing.