Virgil van Dijk a 9/10 in gritting out Liverpool's hard-fought draw at Chelsea
A fantastic late strike from Daniel Sturridge gave Liverpool a point on an evening when two clubs demonstrated their serious title credentials in the 1-1 Premier League draw at Chelsea on Saturday.
Even without the equaliser, this would have been a decent performance from the Reds, and they had more of the game than many visitors to Stamford Bridge will have.
Finishing has once again let Liverpool down. The front three were the cornerstone of their splendid efforts last season but they will need to start bringing their A game soon or the team will be punished.
Manager rating out of 10
7 -- Summer signings have helped strengthen the bench and given Jurgen Klopp far more room for manoeuver. A precious point was earned as a result of that, one that wouldn't have come last season.
Player ratings: (1-10; 10=best. Players introduced after 70 minutes get no rating)
GK Alisson, 7 -- He made good saves one on one, possibly could have done better with the goal. Continues to use the ball well and has not taken any risks since his faux pas at Leicester. Gives the defence a lot more assurance.
DF Trent Alexander-Arnold, 6 -- Good attacking performance, but Chelsea exploited the space he leaves behind him several times and on another day it might cost Liverpool more than the one goal they conceded.
DF Joe Gomez, 8 -- Clearly the obvious choice to partner Virgil van Dijk now, he defended well and was unnerved in possession. Still has the odd lapse when his partner rescued him, but the youngster returned the favour on a couple of occasions.
DF Virgil van Dijk, 9 -- The Dutchman needs to be wrapped in cotton wool, as a disciplined defence rests primarily on his shoulders. Took a couple of knocks designed to test his sore ribs but gritted his teeth and carried on superbly.
DF Andrew Robertson, 7 -- Good on the whole, but some of his crossing left something to be desired despite one perfect ball to Xherdan Shaqiri who squandered the gilt-edged chance.
MF Jordan Henderson, 6 -- Kept the team moving but lacked spark and creativity. It was not much of a surprise when Klopp looked to the bench for a fresh approach.
MF James Milner, 7 -- Popping up in different positions, he was at the heart of a midfield that faced one of the best in the country and wasn't disgraced. Sank deeper second half to allow Robertson to charge forward, he was still supporting the forwards whenever possible. Never seems to get tired.
MF Georginio Wijnaldum, 7 -- Lively in the first half, he reverted back to his usual invisible away self when needed most in the second half. Never easy to gauge his overall contribution but certainly kept working hard.
FW Sadio Mane, 6 -- A big letdown at times, he at least refused to hide and brought a good save out of Kepa Arrizabalaga. Seemed half asleep at times, but he wasn't the only forward to let the visitors down.
FW Mohamed Salah, 5 -- Just wasn't anywhere near his best all afternoon. Got away once but an improvised right-foot prod was stopped on the line. But for last season's heroics, he might have been replaced earlier.
FW Roberto Firmino, 6 -- The Brazilian makes this team tick, but he found it hard going against well-drilled, talented opposition. Still had a header cleared off the line, but he can be a lot better than this.
FW Xherdan Shaqiri, 6 -- The obvious replacement for Salah, he immediately made an impact but put an easy chance wide. Persistence helped push the home side back.
MF Naby Keita, NR -- Brought on for fresh legs and more guile, he had one or two moments but ran into trouble and squandered a half chance with a terrible shot.
FW Daniel Sturridge, NR -- Saved the game with a remarkable piece of skill. Ability has never been the issue with Sturridge, only physical strength, but as an impact substitute he may have found his true vocation for the rest of his career.