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Ajax 0-1 Liverpool: Player Ratings | UEFA Champions League 2020-21

Harsh Pillai
ANALYST
Modified 22 Oct 2020, 11:40 IST
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Liverpool player ratings:

Ajax Amsterdam v Liverpool FC: Group D - UEFA Champions League
Ajax Amsterdam v Liverpool FC: Group D - UEFA Champions League

Adrián: 7/10

One can blame Adrián for plenty of stuff, but last night was a game where he stepped up for Liverpool and the Spaniard deserves credit for that. While he was unconvincing with the ball at his feet, the 33-year-old made sure he was competent at shot-stopping.

A vital save to deny Quincy Promes from 6 yards out was one of the few very important saves Adrian made against Ajax, and that must act as a massive confidence booster for him and his centre-backs.

Andy Robertson: 7/10

Liverpool's backline was reliable on the night, despite not having Virgil Van Dijk, and Robertson was no different. While he did struggle against the marauding Mazraoui and David Neres, the former Hull City man was equally threatening on the other side of the pitch, overlapping consistently and playing Mane through in space.

Robertson is someone who understands what it means to play in the channels, and the Champions League winning fullback knew how to exploit the weaknesses in Ajax's backline.

Joe Gomez: 8/10

Jürgen Klopp's men travelled to Amsterdam with one fit centre-back and he did not disappoint. In the absence of a world-class centre back like Van Dijk, alongside whom Gomez has played almost his entire Liverpool career, the 23-year-old CB certainly took up part of the leadership as Liverpool kept a clean sheet against a very efficient attacking side.

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With 10 clearances, 4 interceptions and 6 long balls completed, Joe Gomez made sure he performed his part in helping Liverpool secure a much-needed win vs Ajax.

Fabinho: 9/10

A man of the match performance from Fabinho in a position which he is not natural at is becoming too common a sight. The last time he won the MOTM was again as a CB vs Chelsea when he had new boy Timo Werner in check.

Last night, it was Dušan Tadić's turn. The 31-year-old had to stray away 5 yards to receive the ball as Fabinho marked him tight whenever he entered the box. Fabinho at CB is a prospect slowly gathering pace and reliability.

Trent Alexander-Arnold: 7/10

Ajax Amsterdam v Liverpool FC: Group D - UEFA Champions League
Ajax Amsterdam v Liverpool FC: Group D - UEFA Champions League

After an average defensive outing against Everton, Trent Alexander-Arnold made sure he answered his critics this time, as the 22-year-old dropped a bright performance on the evening to make sure he is still very much a part of discussions about the best right-backs in Europe.

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Klopp was an angry man throughout the game, and a lot of it was poured at Alexander-Arnold for not pressing adequately and closing down space. Certainly, the gaffer was more relaxed watching his young fullback come back in the second half.

James Milner: 7/10

It's 2020, and a 34-year-old James Milner starts for Premier League champions Liverpool in an away game in the Champions League. What's even more fascinating is the fact that he is more often than not of the best players on the pitch, far from being a liability or a "stop-gap".

The Englishman completed a staggering 74 touches in just 90 minutes of football, suggesting he was very much a part of everything that went forward for Liverpool. While being defensively sound, Milner completed nearly 8 duels in the opposition half, rounding off a perfect captain's performance.

Georginio Wijnaldum: 5/10

The Dutch midfielder was assigned to be the #6 of Liverpool's midfield in absence of Fabinho and Thiago Alcântara and although the 29-year-old did not do anything wrong, maybe Wijnaldum could've done a bit more in terms of protecting his backline from Ajax's central penetration.

Wijnaldum recorded brilliant statistics went it came to passing, completing 91% of his passes but his defensive contribution was close to non-existent. The midfielder ended with zero tackles and interceptions against a side who relies on vertical passing and attacking midfielders.

Curtis Jones: 5/10

Young Curtis wasn't up for the midfield battle at the Johan Cruyff Arena and Klopp had to bring on Jordan Henderson for the second half to see out the game. Curtis Jones had a quiet game; he stuck to his basics but was often found hiding and not providing a passing option when Liverpool played out from the back.

Sadio Mané: 8/10

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Another away day, another elite Sadio Mane performance. The Senegalese had done his homework coming into the game and it showed, as he got the better of Mazraoui, exploring the space in behind left by the fullback and catching Ajax's defenders in 1v1 situations.

Sadio Mane's tame attempt at goal was followed by a poor attempt at clearing the ball by Tagliafico, eventually guiding the ball to his own net. In the end, Mane's contribution was decisive.

Roberto Firmino: 6/10

Ajax Amsterdam v Liverpool FC: Group D - UEFA Champions League
Ajax Amsterdam v Liverpool FC: Group D - UEFA Champions League

Firmino continued doing what he does best; getting in between the lines in midfield, exploiting the space in and around Blind and making blindsided runs into the box to open up space behind him.

Although his performances this season have been far from what his fans expect, Klopp seems to be content with how Firmino has been carrying out his predominant role, for now.

Mohamed Salah: 5/10

Mohamed Salah would've wished to get on the scoresheet on a night which meant the world to him. Evidently, he was not happy to see himself getting subbed off at the 60-minute mark, but it seemed as though Klopp had it pre-planned for the game.

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A below-average performance by his standards, Salah struggled to take on players down the right flank while also not taking his chances in front of goal. The 'Egyptian King' would look to get himself firing as soon as possible.


Liverpool substitutes:

Jordan Henderson: 6/10

The sole reason for his substitution was to bring a bit more energy, composure and experience into midfield. Ajax overran Liverpool in the middle of the park quite easily, but it wasn't the case in the second half, as Liverpool were more compact and Henderson played a huge part in seeing out the game, as he was told to.

Takumi Minamino: 6/10

Risky but interesting substitutions from the Liverpool head coach as he replaced his front three with the likes of Jota, Minamino and Shaqiri, in an attempt to provide fresh legs upfront. The plan successfully worked, as Liverpool comfortably bagged the three points against Ajax.

Diogo Jota: 7/10

The new signing was full of running and endeavour and caused the stretched Ajax backline quite a lot of problems.

Xherdan Shaqiri: 6/10

The Swiss superstar was neat on the ball and also tracked back when required. He will be looking to stay fit and make more of an impact in the coming games.

Rhys Williams: N/A

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Published 22 Oct 2020, 11:40 IST
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