Connor Randall had a week to remember but Divock Origi had one to forget on what was another positive spell for Liverpool’s loanees.
Jurgen Klopp’s borrowed Reds have really stepped up in recent weeks, enjoying far more positive spells in which nearly every loanee has featured.
And the productive streak continued as only two available Reds—Ryan Kent and Shamal George—didn’t play.
Here’s how those who did enjoy game time fared.
One Red enjoyed a memorable week…
Randall has found his best form recently and he had a week to remember as Hearts grabbed the focus of the football world for ending Celtic’s historic 69-game unbeaten run.
The right-back played a key part in a clinical team performance which inspired the stunning 4-0 rout of Brendan Rodgers’ men.
Randall was superb defensively as he helped stop Celtic scoring in the SPL for the first time since March 2015.
He also claimed a (slightly generous) assist for the third goal with a ball over the top which saw Rodgers’ side punished for failing to clear, as seen here.
The shock win secured an unlikely third straight win and clean sheet for Hearts—both of which have arrived since Randall moved to his natural position.
That unforgettable afternoon was Randall’s second outing as he also helped earn a 2-0 win over Dundee in midweek with another accomplished showing.
It’s no surprise to see Randall proving his quality following a run of games in his preferred role, and hopefully it inspires a strong second half to the campaign.
It was a week to forget for one loanee though…
Origi was also in the spotlight this week—but for the wrong reasons as the Belgian produced one of the misses of the season in the first of two outings for Wolfsburg.
Origi had a big chance to make the dream impact from the bench and hit a late winner against Naby Keita’s RB Leipzig, but somehow side-footed over from three yards to undo what was a bright cameo.
Oh, Divock Origi… what have you done!?
The Liverpool loanee with one of the misses of the season. ? pic.twitter.com/AgzrHEOsPm
— BT Sport Football (@btsportfootball) December 12, 2017
Manager Martin Schmidt produced a pleasing show of faith in Origi by starting the 22-year-old against bottom-of-the-table Cologne in the next game.
But Origi was unable to repay that faith on an embarrassing afternoon which saw Cologne earn their first Bundesliga win this season, with the loanee producing another ineffective outing on the right wing.
Meanwhile, five other Reds enjoyed game time
Toni Gomes was the best of the rest as the youngster continued his positive form in two outings at Forest Green Rovers.
Gomes made just his fourth start for Rovers in the FA Cup against Exeter in midweek and impressed with an influential display as his side agonisingly exited after a 2-1 extra-time loss.
He was heavily involved and almost scored with a good strike before seemingly swinging the tie in his side’s favour; Gomes’ involvement saw the home side reduced to 10-men after he was hacked down on a powerful run.
Frustratingly, Gomes dropped back to the bench on Saturday, but he was positive in a 20-minute cameo against Luton in which he again almost scored, only to see his low drive well saved.
On the continent, Allan Rodrigues enjoyed a good week, helping Apollon Limassol to back-to-back wins.
The Brazilian was called into early action as a first-half sub against Omonia Nicosia on Monday—and he stepped in with a solid performance to help secure a 1-0 win.
The positive stand-in display earned Allan a start in a 5-0 thrashing of Olympiakos on Sunday, and he nearly struck his first goal of the season but saw a scorching strike smash the bar.
Pedro Chirivella continues to be a mainstay of Willem II’s midfield and he completed back-to-back 90 minutes for the Eredivisie side.
Chirivella featured in his deep-lying role in midweek and helped secure a useful point in a 2-2 draw against Vitesse Arnhem, before operating in a two-man centre in a 3-2 defeat to Zwolle on Saturday.
Taiwo Awoniyi started a sixth consecutive league game in Royal Excel Mouscron’s 1-0 win over KV Oostende, but it was another goalless outing for the Nigerian who has scored only once in his last 10 appearances.
Liverpool’s record signing endured one of his more frustrating weeks of the season, going winless in two games at RB Leipzig.
Keita faced soon-to-be Reds teammate Origi in midweek, and he was in better form than the Belgian as he produced a quietly efficient performance in the 1-1 draw.
But it was a frustrating weekend for Keita as Leipzig lost 3-1 to Hertha Berlin, with the all-action midfielder not at his best level as he picked up a yellow card.
Liverpool’s Loanees This Week
- Origi – Played 23 mins vs. RB Leipzig & 90 mins vs. Cologne
- Randall – Played 90 mins vs. Dundee & 90 mins, registering assist, vs. Celtic
- Ojo – Played 90 mins vs. Sunderland
- Chirivella – Played 90 mins vs. Vitesse Arnhem & 89 mins vs. Zwolle
- Awoniyi – Played 86 mins vs. KV Oostende
- Allan – Played 70 mins vs. Omonia Nicosia & 90 mins vs. Olympiakos
- Gomes – Played 101 mins vs. Exeter & 20 mins vs. Luton
- George – Left out of matchday involvement vs. Port Vale
- Kent – Unused sub vs. Borussia Monchengladbach & left out of matchday squad vs. Augsburg
- Williams – Sidelined with knee injury
- Keita – Played 90 mins vs. Wolfsburg & Hertha Berlin