With the ‘Best from the East’ defeated it was back to a full programme for the borrowed Reds—and they returned with a bang.
There were goals, assists, a professional debut and impressive displays as almost all those available featured, with only Lazar Markovic and Allan Rodrigues unused along with the suspended Taiwo Awoniyi.
Here’s the full lowdown on a pleasing week.
Harry Wilson enjoyed a stunning comeback…
After three games sidelined Wilson was back in action in style at Hull, scoring a match-winner and posting two assists.
Wilson claimed the first of those in his comeback match, delivering a wicked cross which Abel Hernandez converted to pull one back in a 2-1 loss to Millwall.
Wilson’s impact earned a first start since returning to fitness in a dramatic 4-3 win over Norwich—and he shone with a man of the match display, grabbing another assist and scoring a stunning winner.
Wilson’s fine work paved the way for his side to go 1-0 up, as his driving run and clever reverse pass released Jackson Irvine to finish.
And after his side fought back from 3-1 down to 3-3, Wilson completed an incredible turnaround with a stunning solo effort – jinking past one defender and inside another before curling home.
It was a sensational return for Wilson and all at Hull will be delighted to have him back.
It was a memorable week for Marko Grujic…
The Serbian had a great week at Cardiff with back-to-back wins and a special moment as he scored his first senior goal in English football.
Grujic struck the winner to give Cardiff a crucial 2-1 victory over Barnsley in midweek, doubling his side’s lead with a 25-yard curling strike.
The goal-scoring display was the first of two outings for Grujic, who carried that fine form into Saturday’s 3-2 over Birmingham.
Grujic’s spell with the Bluebirds has been a roaring success so far, with his record since joining reading seven wins and two draws from nine league games.
Another Red enjoyed a landmark moment…
— Andy Firth (@andyfirth1996) August 5, 2017
Academy goalkeeper Andy Firth took his first steps in the professional game with a debut and two appearances for Chester.
It wasn’t the dream opening as Firth suffered two defeats—the first a 2-0 loss to Dover in which he could do little about either goal.
The ‘keeper then featured in what was the biggest game of his youthful career: a local derby against Wrexham which his side also lost 2-0.
10 more Reds enjoyed match action…
Starting with the European Reds, Pedro Chirivella was the best of the rest as he produced a fine performance in WillemII’s shock 5-0 win over Eredivisie leaders PSV Eindhoven.
A virtual ever-present for the relegation-battlers, Chirivella delivered a complete, if understated, display from his play-making role, knitting his side’s game together to dominate the game.
It was a less successful time for Divock Origi who hit an all-time low at Wolfsburg, as he suffered the humiliation of being subbed before half-time.
His early departure came in a 3-0 loss to Hoffenheim despite not being injured.
Meanwhile Anderson Arroyo extended his unbeaten run with Real Mallorca B to six games as he helped keep a fourth straight clean sheet in a 3-0 win over Petra.
It was a similarly busy week for seven home-based Reds, including Jon Flanagan who had an action-packed, but difficult, time at Bolton.
The full-back played all but six minutes across two games, but made an unimpressive full debut in a 1-1 draw at Reading—with the hosts’ goal coming down Flanagan’s side after he was badly outpaced.
And it was a case of déjà vu in a draw by same the scoreline at Sheffield Wednesday, with Flanagan found out of position and outpaced again for the Owls’ opener.
Sheyi Ojo enjoyed a week of better fortunes as he featured twice for Fulham.
He made a first start since January in a 3-0 win over Sheffield United, before a late sub appearance in a 2-1 win at Preston.
Ryan Kent wasn’t so lucky, restricted to just a second-half sub appearance in Bristol City’s 2-1 loss to Preston.
In Scotland, Connor Randall featured in his fourth Edinburgh derby of the season but it was another to forget for the right-back as Hearts went down 2-0 to Hibernian.
In the Football League, it was a winless week for Corey Whelan, who featured in Yeovil’s 1-0 Football League Trophy semi-final first leg loss to Shrewsbury and their 2-0 defeat to Newport County.
And finally, Matty Virtue enjoyed a rare outing at Notts County as a second-half sub in a 2-1 win over Forest Green.
The soon-to-be Red continues to make Kopites dream of the impact he will make at Anfield.
Keita was man of the match as he inspired RB Leipzig to a 2-1 Europa League quarter-final first leg win over Zenit St Petersburg, claiming a top class assist for the winner.
Check out this assist from Naby Keita Liverpool fans…
Watch Europa League highlights on ITV pic.twitter.com/7oWb2X14Aq
— ITV Football (@itvfootball) March 8, 2018
Keita teed up Timo Werner to finish after effortlessly gliding past three opponents in midfield before feeding the striker a perfect through pass.
The Guinean also featured in a goalless draw with Stuttgart, and he was one of the brighter performers in a drab contest, though may feel he could have been the match-winner with some better finishing.
Liverpool’s Loanees This Week
- Origi – Played 42 mins vs. Hoffenheim
- Grujic – Played 55 mins & scored vs. Barnsley & 90 mins vs. Birmingham
- Kent – Played 25 mins vs. Preston & unused sub vs. Burton
- Ojo – Played 59 mins vs. Sheffield United & 7 mins vs. Preston
- Flanagan – Played 90 mins vs. Reading & 84 mins vs. Sheffield Wednesday
- Ejaria – Played 90 mins vs. Aston Villa & QPR
- Wilson – Played 30 mins & assisted vs. Millwall & 90 mins with goal & assist vs. Norwich
- Randall – Played 90 mins vs. Hibernian
- Chirivella – Played 90 mins vs. PSV Eindhoven
- Arroyo – Played 90 mins vs. Petra
- Whelan – Played 90 mins vs. Shrewsbury & Newport
- Firth – Played 90 mins vs. Dover & Chester
- Virtue – Unused sub vs. Cheltenham & played 20 mins vs. Forest Green
- Markovic – Left out of matchday squad vs. Antwerp
- Allan – Left out of matchday squad vs. Anorthosis
- Awoniyi – Suspended for first of three games
- Sturridge – Injured
- Keita – Played 90 mins & assisted vs. Zenit St Petersburg & 90 mins vs. Stuttgart