A sensational result and an outstanding performance, this was the perfect response to the recent pains of drawing late on vs Sunderland and getting knocked out in the last minute of extra time in the FA Cup at West Ham. In arguably the finest team performance of the season to date, Liverpool ruthlessly dismantled a woeful Aston Villa side in stunning fashion, with six different goalscorers getting in on the act. Here’s how I rated our players.
Simon Mignolet- 7/10
Virtually a spectator, Mignolet hardly had anything to do other than save a half-decent effort from Bacuna in the second half, which he gathered at the second attempt.
Nathaniel Clyne- 9/10
Could hardly ask for much more from a right back. Defensively steady as ever, albeit with very little to do. Got forward well repeatedly and his endeavour paid off as he managed to bundle the ball in for the fifth goal- his second of the season. Probably his best all-round display for the club.
Kolo Toure- 8/10
Hardly tested defensively but part of an organised backline that kept a clean sheet. Moment of the match came as he scored his first ever Liverpool goal, a free header from a corner, to make it 6-0. A brilliant celebration too. What a guy.
Mamadou Sakho- 8/10
Made a couple of strong challenges and passed out from the back with confidence and accuracy. Villa posed little threat, but it was a big step up from recent performances. Much improved.
Alberto Moreno- 8/10
Tenacious and aggressive in his pressing and tackling, Moreno covered his defensive duties well when necessary. Showed tremendous energy and desire to constantly get forward on the overlap into some excellent wide positions.
Emre Can- 8/10
An excellent all-action display, helping Liverpool dominate the midfield battle with his robust challenges and pressing. Also used the ball better than he has in recent games. Won possession inside the Villa half before firing a superb strike from 25 yards to make it 3-0- his first league goal of the season.
James Milner- 8/10
Quality delivery to curl the free-kick into a dangerous area for the second goal, and was generally involved in much of Liverpool’s good work in offensive areas. Linked play from midfield to attack and put in his usual hard-working shift for the team. Very solid performance indeed.
Jordan Henderson- 7/10
Still doesn’t look quite at 100% fitness with his heel injury slightly hampering his mobility, but this was an improved performance after struggling in recent weeks. Shifted the ball quickly and displayed his extensive range of passing. Well taken corner to provide the assist for Toure’s goal.
Philippe Coutinho- 9/10
Coutinho has hit the ground running since his return from injury, after his midweek goal against West Ham. His inch-perfect cross found Sturridge for the opener, and he then won the free kick from which Milner scored to double Liverpool’s lead. Constantly involved in Liverpool’s fluid attacking moves with some deft touches and incisive through balls. Added another assist as he picked out Origi with a superb pass for the fourth goal. Pure class.
Roberto Firmino- 8/10
Started slowly, giving the ball away on a couple of occasions. Grew into the game, however, and showed great desire to win the ball back on several occasions with his pressing high up the pitch. Linked well with Coutinho and Sturridge, and provided the assist for Can’s goal. Another impressive display.
Daniel Sturridge- 8/10
Got himself into exactly the right area to head the opening goal from Coutinho’s cross. Slightly sloppy at times, taking too long to release the ball, but generally oozed class and looked sharp once again. His movement is superb, intelligently finding space and making clever runs. Another 60 minutes under his belt, as Klopp could replace him on the hour-mark given Liverpool’s supremacy in the game. Feels like a new signing.
Divock Origi- 8/10
What more could you ask for? Scored 37 seconds after coming off the bench, with his first touch in the game. A composed finish after latching on to Coutinho’s pass- that’s 5 goals this season now for Origi. Gives Liverpool another dangerous attacking option.
Kevin Stewart- 6/10
Fully deserved his Premier League debut and did his reputation no harm with a simple but tidy cameo performance. Picked up a booking for a clumsy challenge, however.
Christian Benteke- N/A
Only got on for the last 15 minutes and wasn’t able to get on the scoresheet. Following the return of Sturridge and Origi from injury, he faces a huge challenge to get back into the side. Well down the pecking order.