Somehow, someway, Liverpool have beaten Barcelona against all odds. No-one gave the Reds a chance heading into the second leg following a 3-0 loss at the Camp Nou.
Anfield provided the perfect backdrop for what will most certainly go down as one of the most historic and emotional European nights ever seen.
Divock Origi and Gini Wijnaldum split the four goals between them. However, every single player in the side played their hearts out. No-one failed the team. An absolute cohesive unit. Liverpool Football Club.
It only took six minutes for Divock Origi to open the scoring with a cool finish after Jordan Henderson hit a shot straight at Ter Stegen.
Barcelona was lucky to get into the break with only a one goal deficit – even with Andy Robertson being taken off injured at half-time – the Liverpool machine kept rolling.
Gini Wijnaldum hit the hammer blow, scoring two goals in two minutes, setting the game up for Divock Origi to hit the final blow in the last ten minutes.
Alisson – 9
Absolutely sensational between the sticks. Oozed calmness throughout the night, despite what must have been one of the most stressful scenarios ever seen in world football.
Barca didn’t even look like scoring. That is down, in the large part, to the excellence of Alisson. The true quality of a great goalkeeper is making easy saves efficiently before chances get the chance to require top-class stops.
Trent Alexander-Arnold – 10
At what point can we consider Trent to be the best full-back in world football?
He was immense for the entire game, with Luis Suarez, Philippe Coutinho, and Jordi Alba all due to wake up in his back pocket in about eight hours.
He also gets what is quite possibly the cheekiest assist ever in a Champions League final. Catching the Barca defence off-guard, Trent launched a quick corner straight to the foot of Divock Origi who couldn’t resist but to tap-in the eventual winner.
Joel Matip – 9
Quite possibly Liverpool’s most underrated talent. Joel Matip has flourished into a top-level centre-half under the guidance of Virgil van Dijk.
After winning the man of the match at the Camp Nou, Matip has followed that up with another world-class performance. 100% tackle success rate and 93% pass accuracy are just two of the stats that tell the story of Joel Matip’s game.
Virgil van Dijk – 9
Another top performance from undoubtedly the best defender in world football.
VVD marshaled the Liverpool defence and kept the entire back four honest throughout the night. There was a lot of tough work to do and the organisation that Virgil van Dijk has brought to the side is imperative to how defensively solid we are.
Andy Robertson – 8
Only played the first half. Had a decent 45 minutes. Contributed a key pass and was his usual, positive self before being done off-ball by Luis Suarez, forcing the Scottish full-back to be replaced by Gini Wijnaldum.
Fabinho – 10
Wow. Fabinho is now firmly one of the best in the world and any argument against that should be rendered obsolete by the way Fabinho pocketed Lionel Messi tonight.
Booked early, it looked like Fabinho would have to walk a tightrope for the remainder of the game, but instead the Brazilian took it upon himself to provide a defensive clinic.
One essential instance of Fabinho’s existence was right at the death. He nicked the ball from the “best in history,” Lionel Messi and drew a foul from the Argentine. Effectively killing the tie. What a man.
James Milner – 9
Milner had an okay first half but truly stepped his game up a level after the break.
The versatile midfielder was once again asked to cover at left-back and he did a stellar job filling in. He shone in the last fifteen minutes as the Reds were holding out to get the win.
Jordan Henderson – 9
At one point it looked like Jordan Henderson was going to have to come off injured. The Liverpool captain defiantly stayed on the pitch and willed his side to a historic win.
There will always be comparisons to Steven Gerrard that Jordan Henderson cannot possibly live up to. Despite all of those unfair expectations, we are extremely lucky to have Jordan Henderson as Liverpool captain.
Xherdan Shaqiri – 8
Managed to get an assist for one of Gini Wijnaldum’s goals but didn’t really offer much else than his legs for the rest of the game.
The Liverpool attack relies on everyone being on the same wavelength and this result would not have happened without the Power Cube in the mix.
Divock Origi – 10
The easiest 10 rating to ever be given.
After scoring the winner at Newcastle this past weekend, Divock Origi was handed a starting berth against Barcelona. Jurgen Klopp’s faith in the Belgian was repaid ten-fold with big Divock being in the right place at the right time on more than one occasion to score twice.
The credit for his second has to go to Trent Alexander-Arnold but take nothing away from Origi. He ran himself into the ground and gave absolutely everything for the side.
Sadio Mane – N/A
Sadio has transcended. He is no longer of this planet.
His performance cannot be rated as it simply can’t be quantified in numbers. The Senegalese forward stood in as a make-shift centre-forward and delivered one of the most complete performances by a forward ever.
He was absolutely everywhere. The creative outlet but also the first line of defence. This should go down in history as one of the greatest individual performances ever.
Georginio Wijnaldum – 10
Even if he is fuming about not starting, Gini Wijnaldum will go down in history with one of the best performances by a substitute, ever.
Our very own secret weapon, Barcelona never saw Wijnaldum coming. Two goals in two minutes turned the tie on it’s head, providing the platform for Liverpool to qualify for the Champions League final for the second straight season.
Joe Gomez – 9
Came on to sure things up at the end. Gets a nine for helping. Didn’t even need to make a tackle.
Daniel Sturridge – 10
No time to make an impact but you know, Champions League finalists.
All of the beautiful Reds – 10
This team is unlike any other Liverpool team in history. Writing their names in folklore.
The Champions League final will be contested between Liverpool and either Tottenham Hotspur or Ajax on Saturday, June 1, 2019.