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LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Saturday, April 22, 2023: Liverpool players line-up before the FA Premier League match between Liverpool FC and Nottingham Forest FC at Anfield. (L-R) captain Jordan Henderson, goalkeeper Alisson Becker, Fabio Henrique Tavares 'Fabinho', Ibrahima Konaté, Andy Robertson, Curtis Jones, Virgil van Dijk, Cody Gakpo, Diogo Jota, Trent Alexander-Arnold, Mohamed Salah. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Liverpool 3-2 Nottingham Forest: Player Ratings

Liverpool made a meal of their return to Anfield, but Diogo Jota‘s brace capped a strong attacking display with a 3-2 win over Nottingham Forest.

Liverpool 3-2 Nottingham Forest

Premier League (31), Anfield
April 22, 2023

Goals: Jota 47′ 55′, Salah 70′; Williams 51′, Gibbs-White 67′


Alisson – 6 (out of 10)

Alisson is the world’s best goalkeeper, but he has a tendency to be lackadaisical in possession at times – that was the case against Forest as he sloppily conceded a throw-in for the second equaliser of the game.

He could do little to stop either Neco Williams or Morgan Gibbs-White, though, as heavy deflections took their efforts away from him.

Trent Alexander-Arnold – 9 – Man of the Match

Revitalised. The No. 66 was busy as expected in his new role, and his creativity was at the heart of everything good in Liverpool’s display.

The ball across for Mohamed Salah‘s goal, in particular, was sublime. Welcome back, Trent.

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Saturday, April 22, 2023: Liverpool's Ibrahima Konaté during the FA Premier League match between Liverpool FC and Nottingham Forest FC at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Ibrahima Konate – 6

Had a tough battle against sort-of former team-mate Taiwo Awoniyi, and he struggled to get to grips with the Nigerian, who was a handful throughout.

Konate was better in possession than his centre-back partner, particularly with his direct passing to the left flank, but he will be relieved not to play such a physical presence every week.

Virgil van Dijk – 6

Not Van Dijk’s best game, as he marshalled a back line that was often all over the place – though it could be argued they are still getting to grips with this new setup.

Like Alisson, he was a liability in possession at times, gifting Gibbs-White an opportunity early on, and thankfully Forest’s two-goal fightback ultimately meant nothing.

Andy Robertson – 6

It might be a hybrid role for Alexander-Arnold, but so too is it for Robertson, who is now combining duties as roving left-back and auxiliary centre-back.

There is still fine-tuning to be done in terms of the defensive line, but the Scot was a eager presence in that channel, while still giving Liverpool that thrust going forward.

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Saturday, April 22, 2023: Liverpool's Fabio Henrique Tavares 'Fabinho' during the FA Premier League match between Liverpool FC and Nottingham Forest FC at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Fabinho – 7

A by-numbers display from Fabinho who, knowing a booking in this or the next game would see him banned for two more, comfortably prowled the base of the midfield.

There was a smart assist, too, as he headed the ball back across the face of goal for Diogo Jota to head in for 1-0.

Jordan Henderson – 6

It often looked like he wasn’t involved, but the captain played a vital role in filling the gaps left by Alexander-Arnold’s forays forward.

In a way, it suits his frantic energy – perhaps more important off the ball than he was on it – though there was still something lacking.

Curtis Jones – 6

Starting a fourth game in a row, on merit, Jones drifted around in his left-sided No. 8 role while knitting together passes comfortably.

There are shades of Gini Wijnaldum to his game, but perhaps this system needs more. He showed it against Leeds with a sumptuous assist, but he is still often too contemplative in possession.

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Saturday, April 22, 2023: Liverpool's Mohamed Salah celebrates after scoring the third goal during the FA Premier League match between Liverpool FC and Nottingham Forest FC at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Mohamed Salah – 7

The determination to get in front of Remo Freuler to make it 3-2 showed the edge a motivated Mo Salah can give Liverpool.

In an otherwise hard-working performance, Salah got the goal that drew him level with Robbie Fowler as Liverpool’s sixth-highest goalscorer of all time.

Diogo Jota – 9

Making his fifth consecutive start after finally ending his goal drought, Jota clearly has the faith of his manager – and rightly so.

After missing an early chance he then made no mistake minutes after the restart, nodding in from close range, before a brilliant touch down and finish for his second.

What a turnaround for a player who struggled for so long.

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Saturday, April 22, 2023: Liverpool's Diogo Jota (R) celebrates after scoring the first goal during the FA Premier League match between Liverpool FC and Nottingham Forest FC at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Cody Gakpo – 6

Such an enjoyable footballer to watch. He will be many supporters’ favourite player before long.

The ball sticks to his feet and he has the centre of gravity of a player a foot shorter than his 6’4″ frame; while Saturday was not his most effective display, he still made his presence felt.

 

Substitutes

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Saturday, April 22, 2023: Liverpool's substitutes Thiago Alcântara (L) and Darwin Núñez during the FA Premier League match between Liverpool FC and Nottingham Forest FC at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Darwin Nunez (on for Gakpo, 60′) – 6 – Missed a golden opportunity for 4-2. Looked a bit lost between roles.

Thiago (on for Fabinho, 60′) – 6 – Tidy, if inffectual as a substitute.

Luis Diaz (on for Jota, 81′) – 7 – Great to see him back at Anfield. One moment of magic was a reminder of what we’ve missed.

James Milner (on for Jones, 81′) – 6 – Added muscle late on. His 850th club career appearance.

Subs not used: Kelleher, Matip, Gomez, Tsimikas, Elliott

 

Jurgen Klopp – 8

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Saturday, April 22, 2023: Liverpool's manager Jürgen Klopp during the FA Premier League match between Liverpool FC and Nottingham Forest FC at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Kept faith with an unchanged side for the third game in a row, rewarding those who laid the platform for Monday’s thrashing of Leeds.

It paid off with two more goals from Jota, while his changes on the hour mark – likely planned – showed ruthlessness as Thiago and Darwin Nunez came on.

In turn, that protected Fabinho from a potential yellow card as he risks a two-match suspension, while flexing the strength in depth finally at Klopp’s disposal.

This will be seen as job done, with four games in 11 days to now plan for.


Player ratings definitions: 10 = Faultless | 9 = Excellent | 8 = Very Good | 7 = Good | 6 = Average | 5 = Below Par | 4 = Bad | 3 = Very Bad | 2 Awful | 1 = Surely Not

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