5 things we learned from Liverpool 3-1 Man Utd
Man United fell to Jurgen Klopp for the first time in the league after losing 3-1 to Liverpool At Anfield since 2013 thanks to goals from Sadio Mane and Xherdan Shaqiri. The Red Devils got what became a consolation from Jesse Lingard in the first half.
Five Things we Learned From Liverpool 3-1 Manchester United
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Here are the 5 things we learned from Liverpool 3-1 Man Utd
1. Shaqiri has been a bargain for Liverpool
After Shaqiri was relegated with Stoke last season, and in order to ensure that he didn’t face a season in the Championship for such a big player who has also played for Bayern Munich, Liverpool triggered a clause in his contract which saw him arrive at the club for a fee of £13.5 million and has since shown his worth.
Shaqiri’s signing created mixed reactions with the fans and Liverpool staff, with some wondering why Klopp and Edwards decided to sign someone from a relegated club, and others hoping he could prove to be good cover for Salah and Mane.
But Shaqiri has been more than a back-up to Klopp since he arrived at Liverpool. He has been an integral part in the way the German has set up his side this season whenever he has played, The Swiss has scored a number of important goals since joining the side including a spectacular over head kick..
Xherdan Shaqiri’s substitute appearance could barely have gone better. Some Liverpool fans had wondered if the in-form Swiss attacker could be squeezed into the line-up but he had to make do with a place on the bench
The Swiss came off the bench in the game against Manchester United and scored two goals, which proved to be the winning goals. Both goals may have been aided by a deflection but that hardly matters; Shaqiri’s haul shows that he is a big game player and someone Liverpool can rely upon, if needed.
This brace against Mourinho’s United now takes his goal tally to 5 for the season in just 13 games, with six of these games coming as a substitute. Four of his goals have come in his last five games at Anfield. The Swiss international also has three assists in all competitions for Liverpool this season.
2. Fabinho is settling in well
Fabinho arrived at Merseyside from Monaco in the summer for a fee of £40 million. It has taken a while for him to get regular game time, but in recent weeks he’s made the defensive midfield position his own. The former Monaco player has been settling in well with the reds after given enough time to get to know English football and his team mates
His first outstanding game came against Red Star in the Champions League. He rarely lost a duel in the match, and his passes always seemed to find their man. After a few solid performances in recent games, he produced another outstanding one today.
The Brazillian international was immense in the middle of the park for Liverpool and dictated the tempo of the game. Fabinho usually plies his trade as a defensive midfielder, but he also showed his excellent playmaking abilities today.
Whilst winning 4 defensive duels in the middle of the park, the 24-year-old also created two chances and assisted Mane’s opener with an amazing pass which was finished by Mane in style in what turned out to be a stellar performance.
Fabinho has really impressed on a couple of occasions now, and if the Brazilian continues what he is doing he could continue to keep club captain, Jordan Henderson, out of the starting 11.
3. Mourinho’s days at United may be numbered
Mourinho is considered as one of the best managers to grace the beautiful game of football, but in recent times at Old Trafford things haven’t been going his way. Whether it’s not getting the players that he wants or falling out with his own players, it seems to be going from bad to worse at United for the Portuguese manager.
He’s spent over 400 million pounds since he took over proceedings at Old Trafford, but his squad seems to be in pieces. Lukaku hasn’t been scoring as much as he used to score for Everton and at the start of the season, and Pogba looks like half of the player that they signed from Italian giants Juventus, the French man lacks confidence and has not been brave enough to feature in big games for the Red devils.
Worse still, the former Chelsea manager’s tactics look out of date, and they go completely against the United way.
His United side have been massively out of sorts this season. After the Liverpool defeat, they now languish in sixth place, 11 points off the top 4. They are also closer to bottom club Fulham (17 points) than they are to Liverpool at the top of the table (19 points).
If he can’t change the fortunes at United, and continues to go about his business the way he is right now, Mourinho’s days could be numbered.
4 This is a completely different Liverpool
Manchester United have had the better of Liverpool in recent years, thoroughly dominating this fierce rivalry. Jose Mourinho has also had a very good record when facing Liverpool over the last few years.
United were unbeaten in the last eight games against Liverpool in the league, and Mourinho was also unbeaten in his last six games at Anfield. The Reds hadn’t beaten United since 2013, when Sturridge scored in a 1-0 victory.
However, the comfortable victory today showed that this is a completely different Liverpool side that Klopp has built. The Reds outclassed United and managed 36 attempts on goal whilst having most of the possession.
The burden of responsibility no longer rests on Liverpool’s front line as it did during Kevin Keegan’s heyday as the statistics from this clash typified.
By the time Shaqiri had helped his side retake the lead, all 11 outfield players had, at one point or another, managed to take aim at David de Gea’s goal
This was one of the most dominating performances in the fixture’s history and it just shows how much this Liverpool team have improved.
It wasn’t even Liverpool’s strongest side, yet they still bossed the game. Milner, Gomez and Alexander-Arnold all missed the game, but it didn’t look as though Klopp missed them too much with such a stellar performance from his men.
Liverpool now sit 1 point clear at the top of the table after this convincing victory, and 19 points clear of Mourinho and United.
5. Jose Mourinho still can’t make United defend properly
For a coach whose career reputation has been built on making teams hard to beat first and foremost, this iteration of Manchester United only fuels the suspicion that the Portuguese’s best days are behind him.
Mourinho rails publicly and privately against his central defenders but he has had several transfer windows to resolve that. Victor Lindelof and Eric Bailly, the starting centre-backs today, were both bought during Mourinho’s reign. There is no sporting director to blame. Yes, his defenders can’t pass the ball but similarly he can’t pass the buck in this instance.
Liverpool cut through United at will, especially in the opening stages as the Reds went in front through Sadio Mane and then looked set to pull away.
Jesse Lingard’s goal knocked the hosts out of their stride a little but they were still the better side and came on strong in the second half.
“Don’t sack Mourinho” sang the Anfield crowd, another embarrassment for the United boss.