Player Ratings: Liverpool vs Leeds

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A frenetic opening game of the season for Liverpool that started with a penalty, ended with a penalty, and included a hat-trick start for Mohamed Salah. The Reds win their opening game of the Premier League campaign for an eighth successive season.

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Alisson – Did well when called upon. He showed the gulf in class between a good goalkeeper and a world class one, with his calm approach following the oncoming Patrick Bamford’s one-on-one chance as he closed the angle right down.

Didn’t do much wrong but did concede 3 goals. 6.

Trent Alexander Arnold – Having missed out on Liverpool’s pre-season trip to Austria due to injury, the young right back’s rustiness was shown here as Leeds’ first goal was conceded from his side. He failed to deal with the trickery and speed of Jack Harrison who got in between him and Joe Gomez. It can be argued that he was not helped with Gomez’s positional awareness, but he also struggled to find situations offensively too.

A poor performance from the youngster who has been so consistent for the last few seasons. 5.

Joe Gomez – He was unreliably positioned in the first half in allowing Leeds to capitalise on several occasions – most notably Harrison’s goal to equalise to make it one-one.

However, he performed better in the second half, and was more aware of danger, utilising his pace to deal with situations effectively. 5.5.

Virgil van Dijk – The imperious Dutchman started the game brightly with a towering header from a corner kick to give Liverpool a two-one lead again after 20 minutes. However, a fatal mistake tarred his first half goal – a lack of communication and being lackadaisical with the ball resulted in a second Leeds’ equalizer.

An extremely erratic, and uncharacteristic, display from him. 6.

Andrew Robertson – Was often the creative spark in the first half – provided the delivery for the van Dijk goal and almost got a goal himself following a deflected shot.

But his performance petered out in the second half, with his defensive contributions taking an impact as a result. 6.

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Jordan Henderson – It’s always great to have the skipper in midfield. Particularly so after missing the final four games of last season following a knee injury against Brighton. He was brought in for Fabinho and played in the same role.

However, he did not stamp his defensive authority on the match and was subbed off just after the hour mark. 6.

Naby Keita – The Guinean has suffered a stop-start career at Liverpool with glimpses of brilliance. If there was a match to demonstrate this, it would be this one.

He did dispossess the opposition in high attacking positions up the pitch but sadly wasn’t effective enough and therefore wasn’t able to complete the match. 6.

Georginio Wijnaldum – Passive in possession and was bypassed (as well as Liverpool’s midfield as a whole) by Leeds multiple times.

He did improve somewhat in the second half with a chance early on exemplifying that. Was unfortunate not to score. 6.

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Sadio Mane – The Senegalese international was a bright spark in spells but lacked the cutting edge factor in pivotal moments, particularly the three-on-three counter attack on the hour mark.

He was, nevertheless, his persistent self and was never shy in attempting to carve openings. 6.5.

Mohamed Salah – Awarded a penalty early on for a shot that was illegally blocked and he duly dispatched it by hitting it straight down the middle.. This meant that he is only the second ever player in Premier League history to score on the opening day in four consecutive seasons after Teddy Sheringham.

4 – Mohamed Salah is the first ever @LFC player to score on the opening day of four consecutive league seasons; he’s only the second to do so in the @premierleague for any club, after Teddy Sheringham (1992-93 to 1995-96). Fab.

Originally tweeted by OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) on 12 September 2020.

The Egyptian scored again 15 minutes from the interval with a humdinger of a shot into the top right-hand corner to give the Reds a three-two lead.

Undoubtedly the sharpest player on the pitch – holding up the ball, linking up play, taking on defenders and asking questions of the Leeds defence.

Kept his cool to score the match winning penalty, sending the opposition goalkeeper the wrong way.

Great performance, and man of the match. 10.

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Roberto Firmino – The Brazilian showed poor decision making early in the first half. When bearing down on goal he should have had a shot rather than cut it back.

However, he displayed good link up plays with the two inside forwards Mane and Salah later in the first half.

Couldn’t get the ball out of his feet at pivotal moments in the second half, particularly when put through on goal by Mane late on and was often sloppy in possession. He did, at times, show why he is such a crucial component to this Liverpool side as he won the ball high up the pitch to create counter attacks.

Nevertheless, an inconsistent performance from the Brazilian. 6.

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