Liverpool could only draw 1-1 at Fulham on Sunday, with Mohamed Salah‘s penalty salvaging a point for an out-of-sorts Reds side.
Fulham 1-1 Liverpool
Premier League, Anfield
December 13, 2020
Goals: De Cordova-Reid 25′; Salah 79′
Alisson (out of 10) – 7 (Man of the Match)
Alisson returned to the starting lineup after a spell on the sidelines, acting as a huge boost to Jurgen Klopp.
Liverpool’s No.1 outlined his importance with several key saves in the first half – without his input, the Reds would have been further behind at the break.
He also made a big stop soon after the restart, showing why he is the world’s best goalkeeper.
Trent Alexander-Arnold – 5
Alexander-Arnold started his first Premier League game since the 1-1 draw away to Man City early last month, but like so many, he was well short of his best.
Too many crosses were uncharacteristically hopeful and off-target, and he was also susceptible defensively, being targeted by Ademola Lookman, in particular.
Not back up to full match fitness yet and was subbed with 20 to go.
Joel Matip – 6
Matip was back in the team, as expected, but this was one of his less assured performances of the season.
His lack of pace compared to Virgil van Dijk and Joe Gomez was apparent, with Fulham getting in behind a number of times and the Cameroonian unable to keep up.
Substituted at half-time – yet another injury it seems.
Fabinho – 7
Fabinho continued in the centre-back role he has made his own in the absence of Van Dijk and Gomez.
He was Liverpool’s best defender on the day, making a number of well-timed tackles, including one in the penalty area that thankfully wasn’t overturned by VAR.
He is going to be even more important against Tottenham on Wednesday with Matip likely to be out.
Andy Robertson – 6
Refreshed after not starting against Midtjylland in midweek, Robertson tried to affect things down the left, but he just couldn’t quite get going.
One shanked clearance that put Liverpool in trouble was indicative of the Reds’ display as a whole, but he certainly wasn’t as culpable as others.
Better in the second half.
Jordan Henderson – 6
Henderson was another who came back into the team after a midweek breather, but he was lacking his usual bite and influence.
The captain misplaced a few passes and was guilty of going aimlessly long too often, which Fulham‘s defenders lapped up.
Missed a great chance to equalise, but was good at centre-back after the interval.
Gini Wijnaldum – 5
Wijnaldum was given a very rare night off on Wednesday, but he looked like someone who had only played about three hours ago.
This was one of those anonymous performances for the Dutchman that can frustrate, failing to take the game by the scruff of the neck while others were struggling.
As was the case with many, he upped his game slightly after half-time.
Curtis Jones – 7
Jones has now started seven of Liverpool’s last 10 games, and he was the most purposeful player against the Cottagers.
The teenager looked like trying to make things happen, attempting to link with others and almost scoring a brilliant solo winner late on.
He didn’t always do enough defensively, but his display was one of the few positives.
Mohamed Salah – 6
Salah has been excellent throughout the season so far, but he was quiet on Sunday afternoon.
The Egyptian King’s touch was poor early on, and barring one shot that flew wide just before half-time, he never threatened in the first half.
Scored the penalty that drew Liverpool level, though – his 13th goal of the season.
Sadio Mane – 5
Mane has been below-par by his world-class standards of late and that continued on a poor day at the office for Liverpool.
One wasteful attempt at a header in front of goal epitomised his lack of confidence at the moment, and his all-round game was unimpressive.
Was lively late on, but is lacking his usual spark at the moment.
Roberto Firmino – 5
Firmino has looked somewhere close to his normal self in recent weeks, but sadly, he reverted to the Divock Origi-esque figure we have seen for too much of 2020.
He had the touch of a trampoline, with attacks falling apart around him, and his usual exceptional work ethic was lacking slightly.
Created more in the second half, but still not fully at the races.
Takumi Minamino (on for Matip, 46′) – 6
Did nothing wrong, but it would have been nice to see him impact the game more. Still a far cry from the player who shone so much for Salzburg at Anfield last season.
Neco Williams (on for Alexander-Arnold, 68′) – 6
Offered energy down the right flank and was largely solid.
Divock Origi (on for Salah, 84′) – n/a
Little time to make an impact. Did a flick on to a bloke in the stands.
Subs not used: Kelleher, Phillips, Cain, Oxlade-Chamberlain
Jurgen Klopp – 6
Liverpool were awful which means Klopp has to take a share of the blame.
His team were so flat from the first minute onwards and his decision to start so many big names against Midtjylland made for a jaded showing.
Not a great day for the boss, although he is suffering rotten luck with injuries.