Gomez 7/10 with solid showing but Sturridge disappoints again

Liverpool threw away another lead late in a game. After a hugely disappointing slump in the Champions League at Sevilla on Tuesday, they were at least more focused against Chelsea. But this should have been a win.


Without being rigorously tested, the home defence stood firm for most of this game.


Unfortunately "most" isn't good enough at this level and a Chelsea equaliser was hardly a surprise given the way the game was going. After the first week of an exhausting winter schedule, some players already look a little tired.

Manager rating out of 10

5 -- Jurgen Klopp did he want to make so many changes? Benching two of his favourite forwards suggests not. The players he did select ultimately did themselves proud but weren't helped by a manager who used his substitutions far too late. He complained about the referee not allowing a defensive change, but that was too late as well.

Player ratings: (1-10; 10=best. Players introduced after 70 minutes get no rating)

GK Simon Mignolet, 6 -- Some important saves in the middle of the first half kept Liverpool level but he will be disappointed with his footwork for Willian's equaliser, even if he was expecting a cross.

DF Joe Gomez, 7 -- Solid and reliable, particularly after his side took the lead. Numerous last-ditch tackles and interceptions were made, indicating a little tiredness was creeping in. He will probably be rested for the next game, but not because of his performance levels.

DF Joel Matip, 7 -- Better than the man he replaced, Dejan Lovren; there is an air of calm about Matip that the Croatian defender doesn't possess. Worked the offside trap well and ensured that Chelsea's Alvaro Morata caused little danger.

DF Ragnar Klavan, 7 -- Kept things simple and showed a little composure under pressure, especially as Chelsea came into the game.

DF Alberto Moreno, 7 -- A performance more about character than skill, he did his job well despite a late "blind" aerial challenge that might have given away another stupid penalty. Fortune favoured him this time and maybe he deserved that after a brave display given the criticism from midweek.

MF Jordan Henderson, 6 -- Another who stood strong after criticism of his European performance. There were some crowd complaints about playing safe passes, but for what you want from the midfield engine room he gave everything and battled constantly.

MF James Milner, 6 -- Erratic, perhaps rusty, early on but grew into the game as it developed into a war of attrition. Tired late on and wasn't great just before the Chelsea equaliser.

MF Philippe Coutinho, 6 -- One or two quality moments. including one fine pass that almost set up a second clinching goal for Mohamed Salah, but essentially ineffectual. The game was too dour and frenetic for him to truly flourish.

FW Alex Oxlade Chamberlain, 7 -- Did his best but the left wing clearly doesn't suit him. Each chance to cross meant he dragged the ball onto his right foot and lost momentum. Fared better on the opposite flank and toe-poked a clever ball to Salah for Liverpool's goal.

FW Mohamed Salah, 7 -- Once again he was the man with the golden touch in front of goal. He should have used his right foot for an earlier chance but learned his lesson quickly. Later, he brought a good save out of Courtois as Liverpool fought to restore their lead.

FW Daniel Sturridge, 5 -- Another disappointing start for a striker who looks out of place. His presence automatically makes Liverpool less creative and, thus, less likely to supply him with chances. He was taken off once Liverpool were in front so had no chance to exploit Chelsea gaps as they chased an equaliser. He be even more frustrated than before.


MF Georginio Wijnaldum, 5 -- Brought on to help protect the defence and hold onto the lead but did not really do much of either. He was not bad, exactly, just a little invisible, which is a common complaint lately.

FW Sadio Mane, NR -- Little time to make an impact and, if he didn't start the game, he probably wasn't completely fit.

MF Adam Lallana, NR -- Nice to see him back but it will take time -- certainly more than the five minutes he got here -- to get back in the swing.