Sunderland v Liverpool Player Ratings

Psst...we can't score if our shots aren't on target.



I feel like it is Groundhog Day and the part of Bill Murray is played by Liverpool FC. Loads of possession, in control of the game, can't score, love to hit posts. It is going to be a long ride until January if someone can't figure out how to put the ball on target. I have nothing else to say, on to the ratings:

Don't forget to share your questions for SB Nation's Man U blog, The Busby Babe, in the story below.

STARTERS:

Reina - 6 - It was always going to be a stretch to reach the cross that Fletcher put into the back of the net, but he had to go for it. Other than that, he had very little to do.

Kelly - 7 - Decent enough game at RB. Did well to support the attack and aside from one terrible stabbing challenge which allowed the attacker to breeze by him, he did quite well in defense. Very solid game.

Skrtel - 5 - He got caught on the goal by letting his man get the wrong side of him. I seem to say this every other game, but I really wish he would cut out the needless tackles/shoves from behind. One mistake is a huge blemish on an otherwise good display.

Agger - 6 - Held the line well. His physicality served him well a couple of times. Did well, along with the rest of the defense, to shut down almost all of the Sunderland attack.

Johnson - 7 - Got forward quite well to support the offense. It does say a lot though that one of Liverpool's best attackers is a right back, playing at left back. Very unlucky to hit the crossbar on what was a beautiful move to open up room for a fantastically curled shot.

Allen - 7 - Very rough first 15 minutes which was characterized by careless passes and possession. However, he shook it off and went back to being the same Joe Allen that we have come to expect.

Gerrard - 6 - He did well considering his position. He should have scored, but in true Liverpool fashion he managed to hit the post. I don't like him in this position as it seems a number of times that he and Allen are on top of each other. His passing still seems a bit off, although he did still manage to produce a couple of absolutely exquisite passes.

Shelvey - 6 - Produced some decent passes, but always seems to lift the passes off the grass at key moments. He is still learning, but definitely did not bring his shooting boots. The one thing I don't like about him in the line up is that it forces Gerrard into a role that is not his best. He is loads better than last year though, I'll give him that.

Sterling - 8 - He won the majority of the battles and was the key player in the equalizer. This kid has been a very bright star in what has been an absolutely dismal start to the season. He was by far Liverpool's biggest threat. He even showed a cool head about him to draw a foul out of Danny Rose while in the corner. Fantastic display, keep them coming.

Borini - 6 - He did much better playing a more central role, but still has a long way to go. He tended to drop quite deep to win the ball which sometimes left him out of the attack. One thing is for sure though, he gave it his all out there chasing down everything he could even if he wasn't going to win it. Nearly paid off on the lazy header back to Mignolet in the first half. He doesn't seem to be match fit.

Suarez - 7 - Great take on the rebound from Sterling's cross. However, that was his only shot on goal. This has to be fixed some how. Perhaps he should wear his Uruguayan top under the Liverpool red to make him think this is an international game. He did work hard, but wasn't quite at his usual best. Let's hope he is saving it for ManUre. Also, the yellow card might have been a bit harsh, but he has to realize his reputation, fair or not, is preceding him. He is only two yellows away from a suspension.

SUBS

Downing - 6 - Quite lively when he first came on the pitch. He is definitely lacking confidence and faded a bit towards the end.

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