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  • David Tyrer

Player Ratings: Genk 1-4 Liverpool

A match that wasn't being billed as, but almost certainly was, a banana skin turned out to be the Reds' first group stage win in the Champions League away from home in 2 seasons.


Liverpool got off to a flying start, with Oxlade-Chamberlain smashing home from the edge of the box with 2 minutes played, before the game became really end-to-end for most of the first 45 minutes.


It took until Oxlade-Chamberlain's second, a beautifully hit effort with the outside of his right foot before the team really settled into a comfortable rhythm.


There were some great moments, often instigated by Bobby, and it was a delight to see the Ox playing with a smile on his face again.


Naby Keita got some more minutes and actually finished a game, whilst Mo Salah was back, even if he was a little way off his best. He scored, and assisted Sadio, who returned the favour so all was happy in the end really.


All-in-all, a solid away display against a decent little side. Liverpool came through without having to over-exert themselves and have now got 6 points from a possible 9 so far.


Alisson - A little less comfortable than his outing on Sunday but he arguably had little of real note to test him. His distribution and short passing from the back was lovely though. Oh, and.. no clean sheet again. Thanks. 6


James Milner - The veteran English midfileder ably filled in at right back and spent more of his time in the opposition half than his own. Swapped over to left-back in the second half and did as tidy a job there. 7


Dejan Lovren - A mixed bag. Looked solid at times but was largely at fault for most of the joy Genk had with balls over the top, because he seemed incapable of, or refused to, step up. Made a bit of a mess of Genk's only goal too. 5


Virgil Van Dijk - Was found shouting at Lovren for most of the night. Had a couple of shots himself. Marshalled us well and look, unflappable as per usual. 7


Andy Robertson - Looked something like approaching his best tonight and was unlucky his play didn't end in more goals. Could've had one himself. Got a well-earned rest with 25 minutes remaining. 7


Fabinho - Solid as always and his sprayed balls forward, like a quarter back, were a joy to watch at times. Look comfortable, even with the much-changed personnel either side. 7


Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain - Had a nice effort against Utd at the weekend that went wide, but went closer tonight after 2 minutes and found the net for his first goal in 18 months. Got his second in the second half and looked generally less rusty. Should be a shoe-in to start on Sunday after his last couple of cameo appearances. 8 Man of the Match


Naby Keita - Was a little more rusty than Ox but he oozes class and, like we saw last season, he'll just suddenly ratchet up a few gears and be in form. We need that to happen soon, as we could really do with a couple of goal-scoring, assist-making midfielders right now. Won't start on Sunday, after Ox's display, but will be getting more action over the coming weeks. 7


Sadio Mane - Just when it looked like he was having one of his quieter days, he goes and dinks a beauty over the Genk keeper for 3-nil. Then set up Mo with an incisive ball through a couple of defenders. 7


Mo Salah - It feels harsh to give Mo a lower rating, but he was poor up until he assisted Sadio and then scored a typical Mo goal himself. It will have done his clearly knocked confidence the world of good, but we'll reserve the higher rating for a more complete display. Hopefully on Sunday! 6


Roberto Firmino - An all round solid display from Bobby, with some typically Bobby moments of flare and ingenuity. Sadly few of them came off but he's always hard-working and always entertaining. 7


Subs:


Joe Gomez - Good to see him get a runout, even at right back. Came on and looked solid enough with 20 minutes to go. 6


Gini Wijnaldum - Had little time but kept it simple and retained possession well. 6


Divock Origi - Barely any time to impact the game but got a big cheer from the home fans, which was nice to be honest. NA



 

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