Liverpool were beaten 3-1 by Arsenal in the Premier League on Sunday, February 4, as the title race was blown wide open once again.
The Reds succumbed to their second top-flight loss of the season and the Gunners moved within two points of them, whereas Manchester City, five points adrift, have two games in hand.
Bukayo Saka opened the scoring for Arsenal as Alisson parried Kai Havertz’s initial effort, but it fell kindly for the former to lash home and make it 1-0 after 14 minutes.
Liverpool were uncharacteristically toothless in attack but managed to level the scores before the break as Gabriel Magalhaes struck an own goal under pressure from Luis Diaz.
The hosts continued to have the momentum in the match even after the break. They scored their second goal through Gabriel Martinelli in the 67th minute after a terrible mix-up between Alisson and Virgil van Dijk, with the Liverpool custodian way off his line.
It went from bad to worse for Jurgen Klopp’s side when Ibrahima Konate was shown a second yellow and sent off in the 88th minute. Leandro Trossard struck a third in stoppage-time to seal the win for the Gunners.
This was easily Liverpool’s worst game of the league season, but all’s not lost yet, with 15 more games to go in the season.
Here are the player ratings for Liverpool:
Alisson – 3/10
Liverpool’s usually composed custodian was frazzled by Arsenal’s frantic nature in the match. He was unlucky to see his initial save from Kai Havertz’s effort fall for Saka, who then scored, but was really at fault for Arsenal’s second. The Brazilian was way off his line there, and a miscommunication between him and Van Dijk allowed Martinelli to fire home their second.
Trossard put the final nail in Alisson’s coffin by scoring a third one right through his legs as the Liverpool goalkeeper endured one of his worst outings in a while.
Trent Alexander-Arnold – 6/10
The marauding full-back returned to the starting line-up, but was visibly below his best. Besides some good passes, Alexander-Arnold failed to offer anything of note in the match. Martinelli also had a great time going at him.
Ibrahima Konate – 4/10
The Frenchman was nowhere to be seen when Saka opened the scoring for Arsenal and was sent off after picking up a second yellow for a foul on Havertz. His dismissal left the Reds to play with 10-men for the final few minutes, during which the Gunners bagged a third goal.
Virgil van Dijk – 4/10
So often the Liverpool talisman in defense, Van Dijk had a stinker of a match at the Emirates. He was a few yards further ahead of where he should have been in the build-up to Arsenal’s opener, and didn’t show enough pace on the recovery either. However, his worst moment was undoubtedly the mix-up with Alisson that led to a second goal for the hosts. An uncharacteristic performance from the Dutchman.
Joel Gomez – 6/10
Perhaps the only decent figure in Liverpool’s defense. Gomez looked more resolute compared to his teammates and dealt with Saka fairly well.
Ryan Gravenberch – 6/10
The 21-year-old was handed a chance to make a case for himself by starting the game, but he wasted it with an underwhelming performance. In his 58 minutes on the pitch, Gravenberch completed only 12 passes, took zero shots, and completed zero tackles.
Alexis Mac Allister – 7/10
A bright spark in Liverpool’s sordid display, Mac Allister won nine ground duels in the game, which shows how important he was to regaining possession. He also made three tackles, including a crucial one on Havertz, who was through on goal. The Argentine attempted three shots in the game, but they flew narrowly wide.
Curtis Jones – 6.5/10
A few good passes here and there, but ultimately a flat performance by Jones, who has been having a terrific campaign otherwise. Like most players, he too lacked his usual flair and was ineffective in defending against Arsenal’s offenses.
Cody Gakpo – 6/10
The Dutchman came agonizingly close to scoring in the opening stanza, but his shot rolled narrowly wide off the target. He was more mobile than his attacking cohorts, but ultimately failed to threaten Arsenal enough.
Diogo Jota – 5/10
The Portuguese forward was anonymous for large spells of the game, devoid of proper service.
Luis Diaz – 7/10
Diaz didn’t particularly stand out, but he forced the equalizer by putting pressure on William Saliba, which salvages an otherwise average display.
Andrew Robertson (58′ for Alexander-Arnold) – 6.5/10
The Scotsman brought vim and vigor to Liverpool’s left flank but struggled to create anything of note.
Harvey Elliott (58′ for Gravenberch) – 5/10
Elliott was dribbled past like a training cone by Trossard for Arsenal’s third goal.
Darwin Nunez (58′ for Gakpo) – 5/10
The Uruguayan added little to Liverpool’s attack on a day when they needed genuine spark.
Thiago Alcantara (85′ for Gomez) – N/A
The Spaniard didn’t have much time to make a telling impact.
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