Thursday, September 19, 2019

Liverpool One-On-One Analysis: Alisson, Mane Shine In Champions League Final

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Alisson (8): The Brazilian shot-stopper didn’t make a single save during the first half. However, he was far better in the second half and responded every time the club needed him, making at least five big saves in the final 15 minutes. Was one of the best players on the pitch.

Trent Alexander-Arnold (6): Forced to operate on a more defensive stance due to the constant threat on Son Heung-min on the wing. The few times he pushed forward, though, he looked threatening. Had a decent long-range attempt in the 17th minute, but couldn’t offer much more in the final third. Operated more defensively in the second half due to Tottenham’s more attacking approach.

Joel Matip (6): Matip played on a sweeping role at the heart of the defensive line. Established a good society with Van Dijk, one that allowed Tottenham exactly zero shots during the first half. All things considered, the Cameroon international looked composed at the back and justified his presence in the starting XI with a solid outing.

Virgil Van Dijk (7): Had a tough assignment dealing with the presence of Kane, but the Dutch international annulled his English counterpart. Won several aerial duels on both ends of the pitch and was virtually impossible to get past to, dealing against both strong (Kane) and pacey (Son) forwards.

Andrew Robertson (6): Surprisingly, he didn’t have a lot of work defensively since Dele Alli wasn’t much of a threat on the attacking end. As a result, the Scotsman found himself on an attacking stance plenty of times and he looked threatening on most of his approaches.

Jordan Henderson (6): A bruiser by definition, Henderson looked active engaging in physical duels against the opposing players. Distributed the ball nicely as well. Shifted to several roles during the entire game, contributed on both sides of the ball.

Fabinho (6): The Brazilian was the most defensive player in a three-man midfield alongside Henderson and Wijnaldum. Annulled the impact of Christian Eriksen and was comfortable distributing the ball. Solid performance overall.

Georginio Wijnaldum (5): The unsung hero during the semifinals against Barcelona wasn’t at his best during the initial 45 minutes and failed to make much of an impact throughout the game. James Milner replaced him in the 62nd minute.

Mohamed Salah (6): Scored the opener with a well-taken penalty two minutes into the first half. Gets praise for scoring the game-opening goal, but the Egyptian was far from his best in this game.

Roberto Firmino (5): The Brazilian forward barely touched the ball. In fact, he couldn’t muster a single shot on target during the initial 45 minutes. Things didn’t change in the second half and was replaced in the 58th minute by Divock Origi.

Sadio Mane (7): Generated the play that led to Liverpool’s first goal when his cross bounced off Moussa Sissoko’s chest/arm. His pace and explosiveness on the wing created lots of problems to Kieran Trippier. One of the best players for Liverpool throughout the game, was incisive and dangerous during the entire contest. Left the pitch when the game was decided.

Substitutes

Divock Origi (58’) (7): For the second consecutive match, the Belgian was an absolute hero for The Reds. Came off the bench early in the second half and sealed the deal netting Liverpool’s second goal.

James Milner (62’) (6): Looked far more active than Wijnaldum and was lively pushing the lines forward. Came close to score with a shot from the edge of the box in the 68th minute.

Joe Gomez (89’) (-): Replaced Sadio Mane to close things out defensively. Not enough time to be rated.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Juan Pablo Aravena


A freelance writer and sports analyst with almost five years of experience in the industry before joining SoccerNews, Juan Pablo Aravena is based in Chile and currently contributes to several publications and websites including SoccerNews, 12up, and Sports From The Basement, while also working as a fantasy beat writer for RotoWire, as a database editor for EA Sports, and as a football analyst for SmartOdds and InsideFutbol. His areas of focus are Serie A, Bundesliga, Premier League, LaLiga, and Ligue 1, but he has also written about MLS and South American football in the past.

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