Nat Phillips and Fabinho were the standouts in Liverpool’s 2-0 win over RB Leipzig, as the Reds finally had something to cheer about again.
Jurgen Klopp‘s side were desperate for a response after their woeful defeat at home to Fulham last weekend – and they duly delivered.
Liverpool were the superior team throughout on Wednesday evening, with only profligacy in front of goal preventing them from comfortably leading at half-time.
Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane scored in quickfire time midway through the second half, as the Reds made it into the Champions League quarter-finals for the third time in four seasons.
Here we compare our player ratings with those from the Liverpool Echo, the Independent, Sky Sports, FotMob and the TIA readers.
Star man Fabinho (8.5) made a welcome return to midfield and was magnificent, making such a difference in the middle of the park and improving both the attack and defence in the process.
The Brazilian bit into tackles, read the game to perfection and used the ball in typically subtle-but-effective fashion.
TIA’s Joanna Durkan lauded Fabinho‘s “inspector gadget legs breaking up play”, also saying that his “presence alone granted the freedom of movement to others.”
Meanwhile, Ian Doyle of the Echo felt the 27-year-old “made an instant difference” back in the No.6 role he is arguably better than anyone in Europe in.
In second place was Phillips (8.1), who has almost become a cult hero since filling in for Liverpool’s various injured centre-backs.
Writing for the Independent, Karl Matchett joked that the defender “may have set a world record for headed clearances” at the Puskas Arena.
FotMob poured cold water on that claim a little, pointing out that he made four in total, not to mention making two tackles and nine recoveries.
Completing the top three was Thiago (7.7), who had one of his most effective games for Liverpool.
Durkan hailed one outrageous pass to Salah as a “thing of beauty”, while Doyle was praiseworthy of the Spaniard’s “huge array of passing”, adding that Fabinho being in midfield helped him.
In terms of poor performers, it wasn’t a night where many struggled, at long last.
Andy Robertson (6.3) got the lowest average and was subdued again, however, with Matchett bemoaning him being “very wasteful on the ball.”
Liverpool now have a five-day break before their next outing, with the Reds making the trip to Wolves on Monday evening.