Liverpool Player Ratings v. Newcastle

Julian Finney

Some scatterbrained ratings from an early morning start.

STARTING XI

Mignolet - 6 - He was beaten on a Cabaye long range strike and a set piece shot that only took place after the entirety of Liverpool's backline let the free kick float over their heads. Neither goal was Mignolet's fault, and he had a few nice saves that kept Liverpool in the game early on.

Johnson - 6 - Glen couldn't go the full 90, which was a shame since he was pretty good in his first game back, as Rodgers employed him in a more attack minded role than usual.

Toure - 6 - Toure didn't do anything notable, which is always a compliment for a central defender.

Skrtel - 6 - The lasting images that have come from Skrtel's play this season have been breathtaking, and not in the negative, shocking way that characterized last year. Skrtel made another full stretch pinpoint tackle in the box against Newcastle, stopping a goalscoring opportunity without conceding a penalty (to the displeasure of the roaring fans at St. James' Park).

Sakho - 5 - Sakho didn't step up to block Cabaye's shot, and he did poorly in defending Newcastle's second goal. It wasn't a good game from the former PSG stalwart.

Cissokho - 5 - What on earth was going on with Cissokho? He seemingly forgot how to walk in the first fifteen minutes, and was generally nervy all afternoon, playing a negative role in both Newcastle goals.

Gerrard - 7 - The Captain stepped up to the penalty spot with so much on the line, but you wouldn't know it from looking into Gerrard's familiarly composed face. There was little doubt that he would slot home the equalizer, and sure enough, moments later Krul was collecting the ball from his own net. His moments of excellence are becoming evermore fleeting, but there's still enough in the tank to make you remember.

Henderson - 6 - Henderson played the defensive midfield role that Lucas normally operates in, but was largely anonymous.

Moses - 5 - Coutinho is just on a different planet from Moses, and I cannot wait for the Brazilian's return.

Sturridge - 6 - Sturridge failed the eye test, yet wound up with a goal and the pass that led to the penalty. By being involved in two goals, shouldn't this be seen as a success? Most forwards would love to have that kind of scoresheet in their worst appearance of the year. But the underlying takeaway is that something isn't totally right with Sturridge, which may have resulted from the international break or perhaps an injury he's playing through. He missed some key chances late on and wasn't moving well.

Suarez - 7 - Suarez took until the end of the first half to come into the game, when he earned a penalty that reduced Newcastle to ten men. After that he was brilliant, striking the bar on a screaming volley and setting up Sturridge for the equalizer. The Uruguayan wasn't far off from sending the away section into delirium when he tested Krul with a stoppage time free kick.

SUBS

Sterling - 7 - I never thought I'd see the day when Sterling was something more than a bland footnote*, but against Newcastle he seemed far more alive and active than in any other performance this year, and because of this he gets a seven. Well in lad.

Alberto - 7 - So this guy is good. I'm keeping a sharp eye out for Alberto in the future, because in his second half stint this weekend I thought I saw a little twinkle of stardom.

*I'm referring to this season, as Sterling had some great games last year.

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