Liverpool faced off against Atletico Madrid at Anfield earlier tonight hoping to overturn a 1-0 first-leg deficit in front of their home supporters. The Reds were dominant for major periods of the first half and took the lead in the 43rd minute via Georginio Wijnaldum’s header from close range.
The Merseyside outfit threw everything but the kitchen sink after the half-time break but failed to score the decisive second goal. The match finished 1-0 in favour of the European champions after 90 minutes.
Roberto Firmino put Liverpool ahead on aggregate when he scored from point-blank range in the fourth minute of extra-time. However, Marcos Llorente scored a quick-fire brace to win the tie for the Spanish giants. Alvaro Morata came off the bench to score a late winner as the contest ended with Diego Simeone’s men securing a hard-fought 3-2 victory after extra-time and 4-2 win on aggregate.
Let’s take a look at how each Liverpool player fared during the match against Atletico Madrid
GK: Adrian – 3/10
The Spanish keeper was solid throughout the 90 minutes but completely capitulated in extra-time when his initial error allowed Llorente to shoot. And the Atletico midfielder buried the chance with a perfectly placed finish. He ended up conceding two more goals in extra-time, much to the disappointment of the home supporters.
RB: Trent Alexander-Arnold – 7/10
The English youngster defended well during the 90 minutes and whipped in some inviting crosses into the opposition box. If his teammates were more clinical, he could have ended the night with a handful of assists. But it wasn’t to be.
CB: Joe Gomez – 7/10
The Liverpool centre-back kept a good shape and dealt with Joao Felix’s threat quite well. However, he could have done better to stop Llorente from scoring twice in extra-time.
CB: Virgil Van Dijk – 6.5/10
The Dutch colossus won a lot of headers and passed the ball accurately from the back. However, it was a game of missed chances for him as he got into some dangerous areas when Liverpool were attacking in numbers during the game.
LB: Andrew Robertson – 7/10
The Scottish full-back should have taken at least one of his chances in the second half. Robertson was unfortunate to hit the crossbar with his header, but he deserves credit for showing outstanding hunger down the left flank.
CM: Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain – 8/10
The English playmaker was Liverpool’s best player in the first half. He set-up Wijnaldum’s goal with a perfect cross just before the half-time break. He ran out of gas in the second, but Jurgen Klopp will be happy with his performance tonight.
CM: Jordan Henderson – 7/10
The Reds skipper retained possession well in midfield and sprayed some brilliant crosses during the clash. However, he looked a bit tired in the first half of extra-time before Klopp decided to replace him.
CM: Georginio Wijnaldum – 9/10
The Dutch midfield ace fought for every loose possession of the ball in the opposition half and was a constant menace for the Atletico defenders. He made some clever runs and interchanged passes quite effectively with his teammates in the final third. Wijnaldum rose above everyone to score with a well-directed header. Overall, it was a man of the match-worthy performance from him tonight.
RW: Mohamed Salah – 6/10
The Egyptian speedster was always willing to run at the opposition defenders but did not have his shooting boots on in front of the Kop.
ST: Roberto Firmino – 6/10
The Brazilian striker missed a plethora of chances during the game. However, he kept his composure to put his team ahead on aggregate in the 94th minute. But his goal was not enough as his teammates ended up conceding three cheap goals in extra-time.
LW: Sadio Mane – 6/10
The Senegalese winger got some decent scoring opportunities, but much like Salah, he was woeful with his finishing in the final third.
CM: James Milner – 7/10
He covered a lot of ground and used his experience well to retain the ball. However, all of his good work went in vain due to some poor defending from his teammates in extra-time.
ST: Divock Origi – N/A
Not enough time to make an impact.
CM: Fabinho – N/A
The Brazilian failed to influence the game after coming on to play for the second half of extra-time.
CAM: Takumi Minamino – N/A
He was Klopp’s last throw of the dice.
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