Trent Alexander-Arnold delivered the crucial strike for Liverpool to ensure they left the Etihad with a point, but the goal was only one part of his brilliant performance.
Jurgen Klopp‘s side have had to endure at the Etihad for quite some time, and while draws are typically a nuisance, it is not the case on this occasion.
The result keeps Liverpool one point behind Man City after 13 games, and it is another tough away trip ticked off for the Reds, who proved their worst enemy for City’s goal.
Pep Guardiola’s men dominated most metrics of the fixture, and had the majority of the momentum, as the FotMob graphic below depicts, but Liverpool stuck to their plan and got a richly deserved point.
Alexander-Arnold was instrumental, as was the mentality within the squad.
Trent matches Gerrard’s 16-year performance…
Guardiola certainly did his best to test Alexander-Arnold, heavily utilising Jeremy Doku to ask questions of his defending and Bernardo Silva to mind the space he occupied.
The spotlight shone brightly on the No. 66 and he stood up to the task, pushing Doku into areas where his effectiveness was reduced and subsequently winning back possession more times than any other player:
- Recoveries: 10 – the most of any player
- Interceptions: 2 – joint-second most
- Passes into final third: 8 – most of any Red
- Duels contested: 15 – joint-most of any Red
- Successful dribbles: 2 – joint-second most of any Red
- Touches: 69 – second-most of any Red
The 25-year-old will always cause a debate such is his ability and approach to the game, but his influence cannot be understated for Liverpool.
As per Opta’s Michael Reid, his stats for recoveries, duels, passes into the final third and his goal, saw him match Liverpool metrics last seen from Steven Gerrard in the league in 2007.
Quite the performance, then!
Save to the net – all in 4 passes
Concern remains over the severity of any injury Alisson may have picked up, and his importance was underlined on route to Alexander-Arnold’s goal.
It may have been lost in the euphoria, but he made himself big for the save and it pushed the ball to the feet of Alexis Mac Allister and away from danger.
From that save to the ball being in Ederson’s net, it took just 27 seconds and four passes – in addition to a very important off the ball run from Cody Gakpo.
Slick and deadly, Liverpool at their best.
Comebacks prowess on show…again
For the tenth time this season, Liverpool conceded the first goal of the match and so a comeback was not unchartered territory for Klopp’s side.
It is wasted energy to have to consistently do it, but at least they do have the capabilities to respond to a setback, something we were not saying all too often last season.
In fact, Liverpool have rescued 12 points from losing positions in the Premier League so far this season, the most of any other side.
It’s a testament to the mentality in the squad, but if we could start by leading first and keeping it that way, we’d be a lot healthier in spirit and body!
Stay in the game, get the point
Coming into the match, Klopp rightly acknowledged that his side cannot “play bad and win” as it is “pretty much not possible against City.”
There were no guarantees that Liverpool playing well would result in three points – we’ve learnt that lesson more than enough times – but with short preparation time, they dealt with City admirably.
Neither team were at their clinical best, but Liverpool absorbed the pressure and despite having nearly half the accurate passes of City (559 vs. 338), Klopp’s men stayed in the game and were deserving of their point.
Liverpool only beat City in the metrics for blocks (seven), ‘keeper saves (four) and throw-ins (14), and yet the scoreboard read 1-1. We’ll take that and move on!
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