Liverpool ran riot in Slovenia, putting seven goals past Maribor to move top of their group in the Champions League.
Roberto Firmino started the rout and scored twice, with Mo Salah also netting on two occasions, and Coutinho, Oxlade-Chamberlain and Trent Alexander-Arnold adding the extras. A comprehensive win on a big night for Liverpool.
Key Talking Points
Clinical Reds Run Riot
Scoring goals has been a problem for the Reds, but their phenomenal front three of Mo Salah, Phil Coutinho and Bobby Firmino all filled their boots, scoring five goals between them as the Reds hit Maribor for seven.
Finishing has been one area Firmino and Salah have been criticised for but both scored twice, a combination of great positioning and good finishing to boost both player’s confidence.
Milner Runs The Show
Two starts, two excellent performances for James Milner this season. Used as a bit-part player in midfield and roundly slated before kick-off, Milner was absolutely phenomenal and integral to Liverpool’s win.
He won the ball back, kept it moving well, was creative, and put in a brilliant cross for Coutinho’s goal. Deserves to be starting in the Premier League.
Goal Coutinho. pic.twitter.com/t9teIzAbFH
— LIVERPOOL INDONESIAN (@LFC_INDONESIAN) October 17, 2017
Perfect Performance Puts Liverpool In Pole Position
Whilst it’s easy to point out that Maribor were simply woeful, the fact remains that this was both a perfect and a timely performance from Liverpool. Defensively they were reasonably solid, they looked balanced in midfield, they pressed effectively, and they scored lots of goals.
There wasn’t a single player letting down the side, and it’s a result that puts Liverpool in pole position to top the group as Spartak Moscow hammered Sevilla. Two home wins should be enough for the Reds now.
Loris Karius – 7/10: A comfortable night for Karius but when he was occasionally called into action he looked very confident, and made one or two bold interceptions as well as one decent save.
Trent Alexander-Arnold – 7/10: Bagged his second goal in European football this season with a fortunate deflection but a solid night for the youngster. Never tested defensively and moved forwards well.
Joël Matip – 6/10: Not sure he had anything to do defensively at all to be honest with you. Passed the ball out the back well when required to but truthfully he could have taken a nap.
Dejan Lovren – 6/10: Like Matip, really not much to be shouting about as far as Liverpool’s centre-back is concerned. Quiet night, but confident when called upon. Should have won a penalty.
Alberto Moreno – 8/10: An outlet. Two key passes, including an assist. Worked up and down the left flank brilliantly all day long, passed the ball well. Excellent night for one of Liverpool’s star performers this season.
Emre Can – 7/10: Did what you would expect him to do. Kept the ball well, moved the ball well, won the ball back well. The sort of performance that goes unnoticed but is vital to what goes on in front of him.
Georginio Wijnaldum – 7/10: Decent tonight from Gini. Got in the right positions, moved the ball well, added a couple of key passes to his game too.
James Milner – 9/10: Brilliant. Pressed exceptionally, crossed excellently, three key passes, 95 passes at 94% accuracy, did absolutely everything right. Deserves to start against Spurs.
Phillipe Coutinho – 9/10: Unreal. Six key passes, a wonderfully taken goal and two assists, six dribbles, won four free-kicks, nearly scored a free-kick himself. Ran the show yet again and so, so good.
Roberto Firmino – 9/10: Two goals will fill his confidence. The first was great positioning, the second was a deft header. In between he played a smart pass for Salah’s first goal. Truthfully very unlucky not to have a hat-trick to his name.
Mo Salah – 9/10: Also secured two goals and an assist, as well as a disallowed third. Pace, power, dynamism, and his pressing created the first goal. The difference-maker in a phenomenal first half for the Reds before coming off early.
— Anfield HQ (@AnfieldHQ) October 17, 2017
Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain – 7/10: Great performance off the bench from Ox, with a goal to show for his sharp, hard-working display. Signs of life for him.
Daniel Sturridge – 7/10: Brilliant little assist for Ox, as he also looked very sharp when he came on. Would have liked a goal but wasn’t to be.
Dominic Solanke – N/A: No chance to make his own impact on a great game for his side after coming off the bench.