Liverpool 2-0 Tottenham Hotspur: Spurs' player ratings from lacklustre performance

Liverpool 2-0 Tottenham Hotspur: Spurs' player ratings from lacklustre performance

It was another away day to forget at one of the big clubs for the Lilywhite faithful.

aaron-brudney
Aaron Brudney

Tottenham kept up their dismal record at Anfield on Saturday evening, with Liverpool running out comfortable victors thanks to two Sadio Mané goals within minutes of each other.

Top four chase back on

Going into the fixture hoping to close the gap with league leaders Chelsea to six points, Tottenham made the trip back down to London looking down the table rather than up.

Chelsea, who make the difficult looking trip up to Burnley on Sunday afternoon, know three more points will see the current league leaders go 12 points clear at the top, with games running out fast for the chasing pack.

Two goals from the recently returned Mané, who had been with Senegal at the African Cup of Nations in Gabon, saw Jürgen Klopp’s side close the gap to second place Tottenham to just one point.

With Liverpool looking to get back to the form which made them early season title contenders, Arsenal once again proving they can grind out results one way or another, and Manchester United hitting form at the right time, Mauricio Pochettino will begin to question whether some players deserve starting berths in the coming games.

Matters could get worse for the North London side, with Manchester City able to go two points clear in second if they can beat Bournemouth at the Vitality Stadium on Monday evening.

Goalkeeper and defence

Hugo Lloris - 6 - Little the Frenchman could have done to prevent either Mané goal in the first half after being left exposed by his defenders in front of him. However, the Tottenham captain continues to put his side under pressure when following Pochettino’s instructions to play the ball out from the back at all costs, something which the high pressing forwards of Liverpool were quick to exploit.

Kyle Walker - 6 - Following the recent injury to fellow full-back Danny Rose, which will keep the England international out for up to a month, Walker has lost a key component of his game. With Walker and Rose constantly bombing up the touchline in tandem, Walker looks lost at the moment as he tries to offer more defensive balance rather than an attacking threat. Sloppy on the ball at times, particularly in the first half when running into space in the Liverpool half, Walker grew into the game but still found little joy.

Toby Alderweireld - 7 - Like Walker, Alderweireld has lost his main partner in the Tottenham team, Belgium teammate Jan Vertonghen, due to injury. With Eric Dier slotting into the left side of Tottenham’s central defence, Alderweireld is having to take on more responsibility to ensure others around him are up to his standards. Acting, almost singlehandedly, as Tottenham’s line of defence from a barrage of Liverpool attacks in the first half, Alderweireld’s frustration showed towards the end when he uncharacteristically picked up a rare yellow card for a cynical challenge.

Eric Dier - 5 - Deputising for the injured Vertonghen, Dier found life difficult as Liverpool looked to exploit the left hand side of Tottenham’s defence throughout the fixture. At fault for the hosts second goal, when Dier was unable to bring a high ball under his control before Liverpool raced away, the England international will have been thankful to hear the final whistle.

Ben Davies - 4 - As large as the gap between Dier and Vertonghen appears to be, it is nothing compared to the way Tottenham play when Davies stands in for Rose. A far more conservative player, whose strength is normally his positional play rather than sheer pace, Davies was arguably the weakest link in an incredibly disappointing Tottenham side at Anfield. With little protection in front of the Welsh international, Davies was often left in 2 or 3vs1 situations. At fault for the opener when he allowed Mané to run inside, Davies’ afternoon was made worse when put on corner kick duty which Simon Mignolet caught with ease.

Midfield and attack

Mousa Dembélé - 6 - The only Tottenham player who looked comfortable in possession, Dembélé turned Adam Lallana with ease on a number of occasions as he looked to add some impetus to the Tottenham attack. However, with the players around his failing to create anything with possession, Dembélé was left passing the ball to a teammate before almost instantly having to try and regain possession again.

Victor Wanyama - 5 - The Kenyan had arguably his worst performance in a Tottenham shirt, since joining from Southampton in the summer. What Dembélé was able to achieve in possession, Wanyama was the complete opposite with a number of stray passes straight to a Liverpool player under no pressure whatsoever. 

Dele Alli - 6 - The recent Barclays Premier League player of the month for January had little to no impact on the contest on Saturday evening. As has been the case so many times this season, Alli found a consistent 90 minute performance hard to come by, although on this occasion the former MK Dons man was unable to get on the scoresheet. Saw a well placed header cleared by Lucas in the first half, following a pinpoint cross by Davies, but Alli often saw two Liverpool players swarming around him every time he gained possession.

Christian Eriksen - 5 - Like Alli, Eriksen can struggle to have an impact on a game when his side aren't controlling possession. A passenger for most of the game, Eriksen was asked to sit in a midfield three following the two early Liverpool goals to try and soak up pressure and act as a deep lying playmaker where possible, a position the Dane is less than comfortable in.

Heung-Min Son - 6 - At fault for missing arguably Tottenham’s best chance in the match, after Mignolet saved well with the South Korean through on goal, Son looked like being the most likely man to add some respect to the scoreline for Tottenham when running through the middle. Operating almost as a second striker when Eriksen dropped into midfield, Son looked lively on occasion but his teammates couldn't find him with any real consistency.

Harry Kane - 6 - Cutting a lonely figure for much of the contest, with Liverpool retaining possession behind the England striker, Kane hit the post in the second half but was deemed to have been in an offside position anyway. Like Alderweireld, Kane picked up a needless yellow card with a reckless challenge as frustrations boiled over.

Substitutes

Harry Winks - 7 -  Tottenham’s most used substitute this season, academy graduate Winks brought a calming presence to the Tottenham midfield when replacing Eriksen in the second half. One of the few Tottenham players to look for the ball and spread play where possible, Winks is bound to warrant a starting place in the coming weeks.

Moussa Sissoko -  N/A

Vincent Janssen - N/A

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