Sheffield United
12:00 PM UTC
Game Details
 By David Usher

Coutinho, Oxlade-Chamberlain tops in Liverpool's standout team victory

Liverpool cruised back into the top four with a convincing win that should banish the memory of last season's dreadful loss at the same venue. Having raced to a 3-0 first-half lead, the Reds then produced a professional display in the second half and never allowed Bournemouth a foothold to get back in the game. They added a fourth goal after the break and went close on several other occasions.


Three points, a clean sheet, another great goal by Mohamed Salah, some terrific individual performances and Adam Lallana returning from injury. All in all, a very good day.


Even the most downbeat and negative of supporters would struggle to find anything to complain about in this one. Liverpool were outstanding all over the park.

Manager rating out of 10

8 -- Jurgen Klopp left Sadio Mane on the bench and no doubt that would have been used as a stick to beat him with had the game gone badly. The decision was vindicated as Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain ensured Mane wasn't missed. Rotation is only ever an issue when you don't win and Klopp got everything right in this one, from his tactics to team selection to use of substitutes.

AFC BournemouthAFC Bournemouth
Game Details

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

GK Simon Mignolet, 6 -- Beaten by a shot that came back off the post by Jermaine Defoe and then made a decent save to deny the same player in the second half. Otherwise rarely called into action.

DF Joe Gomez, 7 -- Another strong, solid performance from a hugely promising player. Defended stoutly and seems to be growing in the attacking side of the game with each game now.

DF Dejan Lovren, 8 -- Bravely stooped to head in Roberto Firmino's clever cut back to make it 2-0 and defended with composure and determination.

DF Ragnar Klavan, 7 -- Another efficient and confident performance from a man who has been quietly impressive since being given an extended run in the team due to an injury to Joel Matip.

DF Andrew Robertson, 7 -- Defended well and kept former Liverpool man Jordon Ibe very quiet. Also showed great energy and pace helping out the attack and his determination to get ahead of the ball and overlap played a huge part in opening up space for Philippe Coutinho's opener.

MF Jordan Henderson, 8 -- An excellent game from the captain, who was purposeful and energetic throughout. Seemed to have more licence to get forward than usual and took advantage of it with some clever runs into the box.

Philippe Coutinho celebrates scoring a goal for Liverpool against Bournemouth.
Philippe Coutinho was just one of a number of standout performers in Liverpool's runaway win against Bournemouth.

MF Georginio Wijnaldum, 6 -- A quiet and understated display from the Dutchman who kept things very simple and safe. With Henderson foraging higher up the pitch Wijnaldum was often sat deeper protecting his defence, and the lack of chances Bournemouth created suggests he performed his job well.

MF Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, 8 - Lively, positive and aggressive, the former Arsenal man now looks very much at home in Liverpool's tactical set up and seems to be getting better each time he plays. Deserved a goal and almost got one when he won the ball with a strong challenge, burst into the penalty area and struck a powerful shot against the post.

FW Philippe Coutinho, 8 -- Curled a beautiful free kick against the inside of the post early on before opening the scoring soon after with a trademark slalom run into the box and a cool finish. Created the fourth goal with a pinpoint cross that was converted by his compatriot Firmino.

FW Roberto Firmino, 8 -- Led the line brilliantly once again and his work rate and constant movement was just too much for Bournemouth to handle. Got the goal his efforts deserved in the second half when he headed in his 13th of the season.

FW Mohamed Salah, 8 -- Bournemouth left-back Charlie Daniels will be seeing the curly hair and smiling face of Salah in his nightmares for months after this. The Egyptian ran the full-back from the opening stages and the only surprise was it took him until the last minute of the first half to finally score. What a goal it was too. It was almost unfair, as how can you stop that? A wonderful goal from a wonderful player.


MF Adam Lallana, 6 -- Booked within two minutes of coming on as he tried to adjust to the pace of the game after a long time out. Improved the longer the game went on and having him back is a massive boost for the Reds during this busy period.

FW Dominic Solanke, NR -- A lively cameo once again from the youngster who stung the palms of the keeper with a snapshot from the edge of the box. That first Liverpool goal is proving elusive but once he gets off the mark there might be no stopping him.

FW Danny Ings, NR -- A late replacement for Coutinho. Should have scored after being set up by Lallana, but unfortunately dragged his shot just wide. Great to see him back in the first team set up.

Dave Usher is one of ESPN FC's Liverpool bloggers. Follow him on Twitter: @theliverpoolway.


Use a Facebook account to add a comment, subject to Facebook's Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. Your Facebook name, photo & other personal information you make public on Facebook will appear with your comment, and may be used on ESPN's media platforms. Learn more.