Liverpool exorcised past demons with a tough 4-2 victory against Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park. Emre Can opened the scoring for Liverpool before James McArthur equalized for Palace. Liverpool went ahead with a Dejan Lovren header only to be brought back to level terms with McArthur's second.
However, Joel Matip gave the lead and Firmino added another in the second-half as Jurgen Klopp’s men won their 4th away game out of 6 away games so far this season. Liverpool are now unbeaten in 11 games across all competitions. The win keeps the Reds level on points with title rivals Manchester City and Arsenal as an unlikely title fight continues to gain steam.
Let’s take a look at the player ratings for the match.
Steve Mandanda: 7/10
The French goalkeeper could do nothing about the first two goals. He then made an outstanding save to deny Coutinho in the first-half before conceding to a powerful Matip header.
He started the second-half in a strong fashion with a fine stop off Mane. He did well to keep his team in the game but he was powerless to stop Liverpool’s attacking threat with a misfiring defence in front of him.
Joel Ward: 6/10
The 27-year old right-back was under pressure all evening with Coutinho and Moreno proving to be a nuisance. He was lucky to stay on the pitch after an unseen handball on Coutinho’s goal-bound header in the first-half.
Ward was much more involved in the second-half as the Eagles stepped up a gear, getting the better of Coutinho and supporting the attack. He faded towards the end of the game as Liverpool controlled possession.
James Tomkins: 5.5/10
The English centre-half had a tough time dealing with Liverpool’s attack and was guilty of leaving Matip unmarked for Liverpool’s third goal. He, along with Dann struggled with Liverpool’s attack and he was dragged wide by Lallana for Liverpool’s fourth.
Scott Dann: 5/10
The Eagles captain was easily outmuscled for Lovren’s goal and lost Firmino for Liverpool’s fourth. Overall, a tough night for the English centre-half who struggled with his positioning throughout the game.
Martin Kelly: 6/10
The former Liverpool full-back was up against the duo of Mane and Clyne all evening with the pair getting the better of him more often than not. He improved in the second-half along with the team defending better. Overall, Kelly put on a decent showing against his former club.
James McArthur: 7/10
The Scottish midfielder showed his presence of mind as he was in the right position to nod home Palace’s first goal. He further exposed Liverpool’s set-piece frailty by rising above Lovren to score Palace’s second.
He contributed little apart from the goals and would consider himself unlucky to be on the losing side after scoring twice.
Joe Ledley: 6/10
The Welsh international struggled to contain Liverpool’s scintillating attack in the first-half before improving in the second-half as Palace gained a foothold in the game. He was replaced by Puncheon in the second-half as Palace chased the game.
Yohan Cabaye: 5/10
The French midfielder failed to get into the game at all and put on an insipid display. He further picked up a booking for showing dissent.
Wilfried Zaha: 6/10
The pacy winger was guilty of switching off which allowed Moreno to run behind him which led to Liverpool’s opener. He struggled to contain Moreno for most of the match. In the attacking sense, he did well to deliver a quality cross for Palace’s second and made another blistering run in the first-half.
He continued to dazzle in the second-half with his pacy runs and troubled the Liverpool defence at times. However, he did not make the needed impact on the game.
Chung-Yong Lee: 6/10
The South-Korean attacker went missing in the first-half but did better in the second-half as he made a couple of bursting runs trying to create chances for Palace. He made way for Andros Townsend after the hour mark.
Christian Benteke: 7/10
The big Belgian cut an isolated figure up front as Palace struggled to provide him quality service or support in the opening 45 minutes. He burst into life in the second-half, getting the better of Liverpool defenders, forcing a couple of saves off Karius and was unlucky to not win a penalty after being fouled by Matip in the box.
A good display by Benteke but he failed to ruffle the Liverpool defence as much as he would have liked.
Andros Townsend: 6/10
The Englishman came on to provide more directness and support to Benteke from wide areas. He was, however, dealt with by the Liverpool defence.
Jason Puncheon: 5/10
Puncheon came on with Palace chasing a two-goal deficit and failed to make any notable contribution.
Fraizer Campbell: 4/10
Campbell hardly had any time to make an impact.
Lois Karius: 7/10
Karius had his most involved game in the Premier League so far and gave a good account of himself barring a few blips. He could have flailed his arms for Palace’s first goal and barring that, he was good in dealing with crosses in the first-half.
He started the second-half well making decent saves, staying strong and holding onto crosses as Liverpool kept a second-half clean sheet.
Nathaniel Clyne: 7/10
Recently linked with a transfer to Manchester City, the right-back showed why so with a solid defensive display coupled with superb attacking partnership with Mane. He constantly delivered quality balls into the box and should have picked up an assist in the first-half if not for Mane’s miss.
He defended well with the team in the second-half as Palace turned the screw and continues to be a vital player in Klopp’s system.
Joel Matip: 7.5/10
The 6’5” centre-half was up for the physical challenge while his defensive partner struggled comparatively. He remained calm and composed throughout the game and scored his debut goal for Liverpool with a powerful header off a Coutinho corner.
He was lucky to not be penalised for a foul on Benteke in the second-half. Barring that, he equipped himself well dealing with Palace’s aerial threat and put on a fighting display.
Dejan Lovren: 6/10
The Croatian centre-half had a tale of two halves in the opening 25 minutes as his slice gifted Palace’s goal. However, he quickly made amends with a well-taken header to make up for the earlier mistake.
He continued to struggle as he was beaten easily by McArthur for his second goal. A tough evening for Lovren and he would expect to do better in the next game.
Alberto Moreno: 7/10
Moreno made his first league start since the opening weekend and spent more time in the Eagles half constantly getting away from Zaha which resulted in an assist for Liverpool’s opener. He constantly linked up with the attack and could have had a goal when he hit the post off a clever ball from Coutinho.
He struggled with the physicality of the Eagles in the second-half and Zaha managed to get the better of him on a few occasions. However, a good performance from the much-maligned left-back will bode him well.
Jordan Henderson: 7.5/10
The Liverpool captain was restored to the line-up after serving his one-match suspension in the EFL Cup. He slotted in naturally, making key interceptions, starting out attacks and always providing an outlet to receive the ball.
His well-timed pass to Firmino helped Liverpool secure a two-goal lead and the victory. A strong away display from Henderson shows his continued improvement in the no.6 role.
Emre Can: 7/10
Can was chosen over Wijnaldum to tackle the more physical presence of the Eagles team. He started slowly as he usually does but came into life with a well-taken goal to open the scoring.
He then put on an industrious performance battling the Palace attack while joining the Reds attack at every possible opportunity. A tidy outing coupled with a goal for the young German.
Adam Lallana: 7/10
One of the first names on the team-sheet, Lallana produced another strong display with his movement, link-up play and defensive work. His well-intended run took Tomkins away helping Liverpool score their fourth and run away with the game. However, he is yet to get back to his pre-injury form.
Sadio Mane: 7/10
The Senegalese winger posed problems to the Eagles defence all evening with his pace and movement. He missed a sitter in the first-half when Clyne slid a perfect ball in front of goal.
He beat the Eagles defence comfortably with his pace and timed a run to latch onto Coutinho’s ball in the second-half only to be denied by the keeper. A solid display from the Liverpool attacker as he proves to be instrumental in Liverpool’s sumptuous attack.
Philippe Coutinho: 9/10
The “Little Magician” was at it right from get-go with his vision and execution constantly getting the Reds into dangerous positions. He dropped deep constantly to start attacks and it was his superbly clipped ball to Moreno that led to the first goal. He followed that up with a perfect corner delivery for Lovren to head home.
The Eagles struggled to contain his movement and he was denied from a Firmino cross in the first-half. He picked up his second assist in the first-half for Matip’s header off another corner. He started the second-half brightly with a brilliantly threaded pass to Mane who failed to convert.
He had another opportunity towards the end after being set up by Mane, only to shoot straight at the keeper. Overall, a Man of the Match performance from the Liverpool no.10.
Roberto Firmino: 8/10
Firmino retained his starting spot ahead of Sturridge after the latter’s brace against Tottenham mid-week. His movement and quality were on full display in the first-half and could have picked up an assist for Coutinho’s denied header.
He chipped the ball expertly for his goal and could have scored another but for his decision to pass than take a shot in the second-half. He did well to lead the line in a tough away game and continues to show why he is preferred to Sturridge in Klopp’s system.
Georginio Wijnaldum: 6/10
Wijnaldum came on to provide stability as Liverpool’s midfield started to get knackered by Palace’s physicality and he did what was expected of him.
Divock Origi: 4/10
Origi came on in the dying minutes and hardly had a chance to make an impact.
Ragnar Klavan: 4/10
Klavan came on towards injury time to prevent a late Liverpool collapse.