Liverpool 4-0 Arsenal Analysis: Recurring nightmare for Gunners as Reds run midfield

Liverpool 4-0 Arsenal Analysis: Recurring nightmare for Gunners as Reds run midfield

Talking points from Liverpool's 4-0 win on Sunday, as the 'Wenger Out' crowd grew loud once again.

OliverEmmerson
Oliver Emmerson

Liverpool were scintillating as they took Arsenal apart, piece-by-piece, to win 4-0 at Anfield on Sunday afternoon.

To a man, they were better than their opponents. Quicker to the ball, lighter in touch, more convincing in front of goal.

Strikes from Roberto Firmino and Sadio Mane had set it up for the hosts at half-time, before Mohamed Salah and Daniel Sturridge turned a good win into a complete rout.

For Arsenal, it'll be an international break spent licking their wounds and a few days wondering what their squad will look like come September as players look to get out of the door before the deadline.

A deserved mention for Gomez

Before picking apart the Arsenal performance and praising Liverpool's forward line, praise for Joe Gomez is deserved.

A centre-back by trade, the youngster stepped in for the second straight league game with Trent Alexander-Arnold having a knock and Nathaniel Clyne still being side-lined.

Much has been made - deservedly - of Alexander-Arnold's performances in the Champions League, but Gomez was solid against Crystal Palace last week and good again on Sunday. 

Assisting the first with a lovely cross, on his weak foot, Gomez also played a part in the second goal thanks to a good interception. 

Blocking Arsenal's best chance of the half valiantly, Gomez's first-half performance was only blemished by a yellow card, potentially setting him up for a red that he never looked like getting. 

He continued to ably do his job in the second 45, and Nathaniel Clyne may be watching on even more nervously now as he see's Liverpool's young defenders flourish.

It's happened to Arsenal, again

You can pick apart the tactics of Arsene Wenger, and people will. A high line against Mane and Salah, with three at the back? It's questionable to say the least.

But regardless of tactics, many of these 'top six' clashes are often won by midfield physicality, something that Arsenal displayed non of.

Granit Xhaka's only impact was to get a yellow, again. Aaron Ramsey was wandering for 45 minutes before being dragged off at half-time, whilst Mesut Ozil was again non-existent.

Alexis Sanchez didn't do his price-tag any harm with an embarrassing performance, somehow managing to crack a smile after being hooked as he sat on the bench at 3-0.

In opposition, Liverpool had a string of 8/10, 9/10 performances. The midfield triangle of Jordan Henderson, Georginio Wijnaldum and Emre Can won't take the headlines, but were streaks ahead of their counter-parts. 

Wijnaldum putting Ramsey on his back-side not once, but twice, during one first-half dribble summed up the performances of those two, whilst the relentless pressing of Henderson and Can overran the Gunners from minute one.

 

Liverpool's front three, mesmeric

Playing a high-line against Liverpool is always going to be dangerous, but the front three that the Reds employ still have to tuck away the inevitable chances.

Roberto Firmino was excellent against Hoffenheim in mid-week and was electric once again, his deserved goal coming early on.

Sadio Mane destroyed Arsenal on the first day of last season and tore them limb-for-limb again, his third goal in as many Premier League games raising questions over whether or not he can now be considered 'world class'. 

And Mohamed Salah, 'Chelsea reject', netted his third in five games for Liverpool - and his first home league goal - as a highlight of a lively performance where he gave Bellerin and Monreal nightmares. 

There will be games this season where teams employ a low-block against Liverpool and they can't get behind so easily with their pace.

But, stick Philippe Coutinho in that midfield three, and you really start to ask questions as to how you can stop them. 

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