Liverpool v Arsenal: LFC Player Ratings

Simon Mignolet

Simon Mignolet:

I’m a patient man. I know you all think I’m a ranting lunatic, but that’s just a persona I put on for this blog. I’m actually quite reserved, mostly. Yet sometimes, when really pressed, antagonized and provoked, I can lash out. It’s not pretty, and it’s not clever, but it is necessary. If you’re under 18 years of age, I want you to look away now….Simon, you are a thundering fuckhead, capable of devastating the emotions of millions in mere seconds, with the goalkeeping ability of a sunday-league clogger. I hate you and everything you represent. Your teammates bust their arse to score 3 goals against the league leaders, yet because of you they barely scraped a draw. I hope they flush your head down the lavatory repeatedly until a waffle falls out of your arse. I’ve had enough.


Nathaniel Clyne

Nathaniel Clyne:

Ummmmmmmmmmmmmmm….I don’t fecking know anymore. Is Patsy a fine player, playing in a poor defence, and next season we’ll see him flourish under the new ‘Klopp Defence’? Or is he a reason why the defence is poor? If you think you know the answer, you’re guessing. He attacked with limited effect. He defended with limited effect. My arse is red-raw sitting on this fence, but I have to for now….


Kolo Toure


The best defender on the pitch for Liverpool tonight. He threw himself into every challenge and made numerous interceptions that prevented certain goals. He loves that his name is sung at the darts, he laughs at his brother throwing his toys out of the pram, he adores Jurgen Klopp and he wants to stay at Liverpool for another season. I love him. Unequivocally.


Mamadou Sakho

Mamadou Sakho: 

The French Connection. Have you seen the movie? Sakho and Giroud re-created it tonight at times. That was a serious tussle, and I’m sorry to say that Giroud won it. Does that mean that Sakho came first? Anyway, I digress. Of course Sakho is coming back from an injury and according to Klopp he’s not fully fit, but needs must and Mamadou stepped up when required.


Alberto Moreno

Alberto Moreno: 

God, the fifth Liverpool defender to discuss tonight and I’m starting to feel ill. It’s not Bertie’s fault, but I just want to shake off the issues with the Liverpool defence as I feel that I wear it like a dirty coat. It smells. It hums. It’s rank.  Honestly, are you the same? If your team plays badly, you walk around with your head down, don’t you? I know I do. Bertie did alright, got forward well, but did feck all when he did so. I hold out hope for him, but it’s just hope.


Jordan Henderson

Jordan Henderson:

Grafter. Worker. Leader. If you told me three years ago that Jordan Henderson would be the Captain of Liverpool Football Club I would have slapped you hard, taken a blood sample and had you banned from all sports for 5 years with the results. However here we are, and as demonstrated during the second Bobby Firmino goal, Hendo is a crucial part of this team. His partnership with Can in midfield looks like it could be a world-leading partnership for the next 5+ years at least. He hunts the ball, he knows how to use it and whisper it…he doesn’t blooter the ball into Row Z half as much as someone else I could mention….


Emre Can

Emre Can:

Superb. All action. All energy. All encompassing. All terrain. All we wanted to see. Warrior. Yet again.


James Milner: 

Better. Really, this was better. Since he has come back from his layoff it appears that Klopp has worked out a better way to utilise the ‘skills’ that James possesses. Deployed on the left during the first half, and on the right during the second half, he was constantly probing and prodding and heavily involved in all of the attacks. Is he a guaranteed 1st team starter when everyone is fit? Hell no. Will everyone be fit? Hell no. G’wan James.


Jordan Ibe

Jordon Ibe: 

I’ve done it again….I’m very, very sorry. Previously you will note that I picked Philippe Coutinho for my FF team, and drove him to the point of injury. I admit that I have now picked Jordon Ibe, but in my defence, he’s cheap as chips and should play for the next few weeks! Will you forgive me? Please? Oh shite….just take it out on me and leave my family alone….


Adam Lallana

Adam Lallana: The following was my review of Adam from the game away to Watford a few weeks ago:

A common theme arising from this capitulation at Vicarage Road is that Liverpool lack ‘characters’. Players who can grab a game by the scruff of the neck, who can lead their team into a tough away match and ensure they don’t do anything stupid and make them hard to beat. Players who, when the chips are down, will put it all on the line to try and turn it around. Liverpool fans know players like that when they see them. They’ve seen enough over the years. I know what I see in Lallana, and it’s none of the above. I feel his ‘character’ is best summed up by an incident in the first half, when defending a corner. He was on ‘first man’ duty at the near post. The corner was whipped in, and it was poor. It wasn’t high enough to beat the first man – in fact it wasn’t high enough to get over hip height of the first man. Yet there was Adam, performing what can only be described as an effete ‘skip’, wafting his right leg at the ball like a conductor wafts his hand at the string section in the Royal Albert Hall. The ball then careers towards the Liverpool goal, in-swinging between the posts, and was only just kept out by a flapping Bogdan.

Dearest Adam, that’s just BOLLOX. How f*cking DARE you do that in a Liverpool shirt. That may be one ‘incident’, but that sums up a player in my book. Would Gerrard have done that? Souness? Carragher? Would they f*ck. They’d have taken the leather (or plastic, or silicone or whatever the hell is on the balls these days) off the cover off that ball by wellying it 100 yards away from our goal. I could take a cheap-shot at you and say that the Nivea cream has made you soft, but that would be a cheap-shot at Nivea. You were never hard to begin with.

Do you recognise that incident? You should, because it happened tonight…AGAIN. It was unforgivable the first time…NOW? I’d rather not say what I’d like right now. MI5 are probably monitoring this blog.


Roberto Firmino

Roberto Firmino:


Superb goals. The first was instinctive and natural reading of the game. The second was utter genius. Why should we ever play Benteke through the middle again? He hit the bar as well. His movement was superb, his link-up play was better than LinkedIn. Welcome to the party Bobby.



Joe Allen

Poor Joe: The most maligned man in the Liverpool squad (and that takes some doing) pops up with an incredible last minute equaliser. Thoroughly deserved over the last few months in fairness. I don’t think Joe will be a Liverpool player next season so I’m happy that he has a moment he will remember. The Welsh Xavi indeed.


Steven Caulker

Steven Caulker: Ooooohhhhh, that Klopp is a trickster, eh? Caulker was announced as a last-minute defensive signing, but with only minutes to go in the match, Klopp reveals that Stevie C is actually an emergency forward signing. He had 5 minutes up front. I’m not going to rate that. I could, but that would be mean.


Christian Benteke

Christian Benteke: He came on. He jumped a bit. He ran a bit. He earned obscene amounts of money. He set up the equaliser. Small steps.


Jurgen Klopp

Manager: Jurgen Klopp: He doesn’t have time to take the team to the training ground very often. If you do Jurgen, and you’re reading this (again), take some time to concentrate on defending corners, aye? You know who your best forwards are, you know which forwards need to be flogged, you know which midfielders are decent and you’re getting to know your young fringe players. All of this is good, but the defensive calamities and the goalkeeping clusterf*ck needs to be sorted. Do it. Do it now.


Note: If you enjoy the guff on this blog, you can find me on Twitter (@NiallHawthorne). I’m also regularly contributing to Finally I’m a co-host for the best weekly Premier League Podcast in the whole world – @ByTheMinEPL Podcast, which can be found on the website. If you’ve read this far, pat yourself on the back. Xxx.


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