Fulham 1-1 Liverpool | A tale of two halves

Bit of a damp squid this one but we did what the best teams do when not at their best, dug in and managed to salvage something. It was indeed a game of two halves where we were soundly beaten in the first and then reversed our fortunes in the second. Well played to Scott Parker and Fulham too.

Today I thought I'd take a bash at some player ratings and see if folks agree. So, for Alisson an 8 and a 5 for everyone else. Thanks for taking the time to read and please comment below. Okay, okay, let's see how everyone really did....

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Alisson 8 Man of the match for me, without his multiple great saves in the first half, Fulham would have been out of sight and the game itself all over red rover. Kelleher has shown promising signs but Alisson is a bona fide world beater and it's great to have him back.

Alexander-Arnold 6 Also nice to have Trent back and he played well in part. Typically most of his good work was shortly before he was subbed, some nice crosses and general play but good plan from Klopp to keep him fit for the Spurs game.

Matip 3 People may feel that harsh but that's how I'm scoring him purely because he's injured again. Sounding like it may not be serious but it doesn't matter because within a few weeks he'll have picked up another one. That's me being matter of fact, it's not a personal thing and I of course wish him the best in recovery as well as maintain ongoing hope his injury troubles will abate.

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Fabinho 7 Solid centre-back play throughout. You would never know it wasn't his main position.

Robertson 5 Very quiet by his normal extremely high standards.

Jones 7 Couldn't effect the game as much as we'd have liked in the first half. None of our midfield could. Grew into the game though and what impresses me most is his calm head on young shoulders. He doesn't panic but steadily goes about playing good football.

Tidy, good passing, good choice in the passes he makes, also dribbles the ball into dangerous areas and is difficult to dispossess. Not the complete package yet though. I'd like to see more through balls from him as well as some shooting.

Henderson 6 As ever Hendo's criminally underrated in some quarters. In the first half today I felt he was comfortably our best outfield player. Driving the ball and our entire team forward, often being the only one to do so.

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He has a brilliant passing range, regularly whipping balls into the area as well as out wide and he puts in a vital shift defensively. He does that game in, game out. Our unsung hero and if it wasn't for him not converting that great chance today I'd have rated him higher.

Wijnaldum 5 Games like this demonstrate perfectly why Gini often frustrates. Without doubt he does a lot of very important work but where is he when the chips are down? He's still there doing key defensive work but where I also want to see him is getting forward occasionally and popping up at the edge of the area to take a shot.

Maybe Gini too could be playing some through balls in behind. Granted we were under the cosh a lot in this match but I still want to see that bit more from him.

Salah 6 Another for whom 'underwhelming' seems a good description today. He looked sharp in part and yes he converted our penalty. I'm not rating him higher for that though because like several of our lads he left me disappointed.

Where were our world class players today? Where was the killer through ball, the sweetly struck long range pearler or maybe some intricate link up play resulting in a goal? Nowhere.

Firmino 4 Barely noticed he was on the pitch. Hopefully I wasn't paying good enough attention and am being harsh here?

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Mane 7 I thought Mane was by far the best of our attackers today. The only one to really get down and dirty and put in a shift. Albeit too little too late which is why I was tempted to rate him a six but he did just enough to nudge things to a seven. Just enough.

Looking for glass half full takeaways: Maybe Mane is about to properly hit his stride which could be good news for the Spurs game.


Minamino 7 Far better from Taki today but still not enough. Full of endeavour and industry he had a positive impact over the 45 minutes he played. Against Midtjylland he also played well and perhaps we're starting to see a pattern of deployment from Klopp.

In the Midtjylland match Minamino was both our joint highest tackler as well as winning the most duels of any Liverpool player. Today he wasn't quite as successful in those facets but remained in the top group of LFC players on both.

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I'm beginning to see him as a terrier, nipping at the heels of the opposition and generally making a nuisance of himself. If he can add more in attack then he may well be a good all round option for us and as noted by Sid in our match thread, with Jota out, now may be the time for Taki to shine.

Neco Williams 7 I was impressed with Neco today. Coming on at the 68th minute didn't give him time to earn a really high rating but he stood up well to Fulham's attacking player, Lookman, and actually we didn't lose any attacking momentum without Trent. Neco showed lots of confidence in getting forward, playing some nice passes and crosses as he went.


In terms of this game I'm rating Jurgen a 7. Our line-up looked fine and strong but clearly wasn't quite right. For me the issue was in midfield and not for the first time.

Jurgen's hands were somewhat forced, partly due to his own mistake midweek which lead to players not being as well rested as they should have been and worse still injured in the case of Jota.

Even with those constraints we could have fielded Ox in midfield for more bite, or begun the game with Minamino included to make a 4-2-3-1. Perhaps that might be too attack biased but by now it's becoming clear our Hendo-Gini-Jones midfield lacks some cut and thrust.

Teams are often able to park a bus against us safe in the knowledge that missing Keita and Thiago we don't have all the tools we'd like to break it down.

In conclusion, another injury blow was dealt but we did salvage a point. Alisson returning was a welcome and vital boost and hopefully Trent's early sub a pre-planned protective move.

Fingers crossed our luck changes on the injuries. That's really in the lap of the dogs but what is in our own control is tactics, formations and line-ups and I'd like to see Jurgen try some new ones.

Not necessarily against Tottenham because they'll attack and our go to 4-3-3 works fine at home when teams do so. Mind you this is a Mourinho team so even that's not a given. Regardless, next time a bus is likely to be parked, I want to see us stop trying to shift it with the exact same approach.

However, when all is said and done, most teams are dropping points and despite our terrible luck with injuries the main thing is we're still very much in the hunt. Onwards and Kloppwards we go.

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