After three games on the road, Liverpool returned home to face a Villa outfit now led by Steven Gerrard.
The visitors were eager to stay in their shape to limit damage and keep them in the game until the end, and they did just that thanks to the lack of a final ball from the Reds.
But the game was to be decided from the penalty spot with Mohamed Salah cooly converting to hand Liverpool a 1-0 advantage that they did not relinquish, although it was far from a straightforward end to proceedings.
The average rating across the board for the XI was 7.1, with six Reds exceeding that figure.
Salah averaged the highest rating (7.8) thanks to his decisive winner at the Kop end, with This Is Anfield also noting that he was “inevitably involved in the best moves and moments throughout.”
The Echo‘s Ian Doyle lauded the centre-back for defending “stoutly in tricky conditions” and for having “led the resistance” during Villa’s late pressure.
But Alisson (5.9) was not quite able to match his teammates after a few hairy moments in either half.
Liverpool’s No. 1 was not overly tested but a slip and mix up with Matip made for two unsettling moments, but a clean sheet was still credited to his name by the end of the 90 minutes.