“We’ve waited almost a year to see Naby [Keita] in the Premier League but boy was he worth the wait!”
That was Jamie Redknapp’s (h/t Daily Mail) assessment after Naby Keita’s debut in the Premier League. The Guinea midfielder had to wait for a year before kicking the ball for us but the plaudits keep coming thick and fast from the former Red.
“He is unlike any Liverpool midfielder in the Premier League era. Keita is a pocket rocket brimming with pace and energy but also blessed with technical ability.”
Redknapp seems to be onto something as Keita found it easy against a new look Hammers. Even against Crystal Palace, the former Leipzig star was at his incredible best.
There was a moment where he spun deep inside our own half and lobbed a glorious pass for Mohamed Salah. Although the Egyptian lifted the ball over the bar, that piece of ingenuity, quick thinking and execution certainly got me excited for the rest of the campaign.
Naby Keita is really good. pic.twitter.com/yjgalaiNVm
— Foot Mercato (@Footy_Mercato) August 21, 2018
Jumping to the Premier League from another country is never easy for any player but Keita looks like he was born for this Liverpool side. I know, it is only two games into the season but the Guinea international has barely put a foot wrong so far.
The 23-year-old has played 177 minutes of football for us this season and even though he hasn’t created a goal or scored one, he is someone to keep an eye on for the rest of the campaign.
Brilliant on the ball for Liverpool
Keita has a pass success rate of 87% and makes 66 passes per game on an average – not a bad stat to be honest. The midfielder is fifth in the list of most passes at Liverpool and only James Milner is the midfielder who is ahead of Keita in this stat.
If we look at some of the defensive work he’s done for us, the Guinea star averages 3 tackles a game and is tied at the top of this stat with Joe Gomez and Andy Robertson.
In fact, his willingness to get into the game can be seen with the number of touches he has had. In his debut match against West Ham (h/t Whoscored), Keita got in 81 touches, which was only better by James Milner and a couple of defenders.
Against Palace (h/t Whoscored), Keita had 83 touches and only Virgil van Dijk, Trent Alexander-Arnold and Andrew Robertson got more touches than the Guinean.
While Keita is more often seen on the left side of the midfield, we should see him play a more free role in the games to come, should he continue getting into good positions for the Reds.
The midfielder’s passing range is not bad too as he averages one long ball per game but his best work is when he tries to take players on.
— Virgil van Dijk (@VanDijkLFC) August 13, 2018
Quick feet, quick decision making and covering almost every inch of the ground. Naby Keita seems perfect for Jurgen Klopp’s playing style at Liverpool.
His understanding with our front three seems good and it will only get better with more games under his belt, which is an ominous sign for our rivals.
It was a bit of a surprise when Klopp was willing to wait a year to get Keita aboard but if the Guinean continues playing like this for the season, we might have a new king of Anfield.
Former Manchester United star believes only Liverpool can “stop” Manchester City
The Reds are a couple of points behind Pep Guardiola’s side, and after Chelsea’s 0-0 draw against Everton, the former United man believes the Blues don’t have it in them to stop City.
Speaking on his podcast (h/t Liverpool Echo), the Englishman believed City were on the right track to retaining their Premier League crown:
“Winning one league is an achievement, winning back-to-back titles makes you a great team and Man City are on the brink of that.
“At this moment in time, I only feel like Liverpool can stop them.”
Neville stated that although Chelsea are doing well under Maurizio Sarri, only the Reds were capable of stopping City.
The former Manchester United defender added that there is another problem as we seem to be the only team capable of taking points off the Cityzens.
“The problem for Liverpool is that it doesn’t look like anyone else can lay a glove on City, that’s the problem they’ve got.”
Guardiola’s men have been supreme this season but they have dropped points against Wolverhampton Wanderers and lost to Lyon in the Champions League.
We need someone else to beat or draw with City to have a real chance of winning the title, and hopefully, a rival steps up and puts a spanner in City’s machine soon.
“Now it’s time to celebrate my birthday” – What the Liverpool players said after 2-0 win over Fulham
Liverpool survived a bit of a scare early on but got the three points with a 2-0 win over Fulham on Sunday.
The win pushed us up to second in the Premier League table as Chelsea drew and Manchester City won their respective games.
It seemed that Aleksandar Mitrovic had opened the scoring in the first half but his effort was ruled offside.
Quick thinking from Alisson and Trent Alexander-Arnold helped Mohamed Salah score the first goal of the game, and the Egyptian posted an image of his boots.
— Mohamed Salah (@MoSalah) November 11, 2018
The other goalscorer was Xherdan Shaqiri. The Swiss star volleyed in our second after half-time and he certainly was pleased with his performance at Anfield.
— Xherdan Shaqiri (@XS_11official) November 11, 2018
Andy Robertson provided the cross for our second, and the Scottish captain was happy that the Reds won after their midweek defeat to Red Star Belgrade.
— Andrew Robertson (@andrewrobertso5) November 11, 2018
James Milner got a few minutes on the pitch after coming on as a substitute.
— James Milner (@JamesMilner) November 11, 2018
Our starting midfielders were Fabinho and Georginio Wijnaldum. While the Brazilian did a great job in midfield, Wijnaldum had more to celebrate.
— Fabinho (@_fabinhotavares) November 11, 2018
It was the Dutch midfielder’s birthday and Jurgen Klopp did sub him around 20 minutes before the end of the game.
— Georginio Wijnaldum (@GWijnaldum) November 11, 2018
Simon Mignolet hasn’t played a single minute in our Premier League campaign, but the Belgian was quick to celebrate the win too.
Another great result. Good job boys! See you after the international break 🔜🇧🇪 pic.twitter.com/igSp0lkO6S
— Simon Mignolet (@SMignolet) November 11, 2018
Liverpool play Watford when the players return after the international break. The Reds are a couple of points behind Manchester City at the top of the table, and getting the three points at Vicarage Road will be difficult.
Liverpool handed incredible home record after 2-0 win over Fulham
Liverpool’s 2-0 win over Fulham sent them to the top of the Premier League until Manchester City’s win over Manchester United in the late game.
The win took us to 30 points from 12 matches and helped us reach a small milestone too. The Liverpool Echo reports that the Reds now have the best home record of any team in the top five leagues.
Barcelona held the record with 42 unbeaten home games, but the Catalan’s surprisingly lost to Real Betis 4-3 yesterday.
The last time we lost a home Premier League game was in 2017 with Crystal Palace getting the three points.
Christian Benteke was the chief architect of our destruction that day, and the report claims that we haven’t lost the 27 games held at Anfield since.
The Reds have picked up 18 wins and nine draws from those 27 games, and this season, we have been solid at the back too.
Liverpool have conceded only one goal in their home Premier League games this season which was against Cardiff a couple of weeks ago.
Our home form has been excellent under Jurgen Klopp and we face some tough sides before the end of the year.
Everton, Manchester United and Arsenal all visit Anfield before the New Year. The festive period could define our Premier League challenge, and it will be interesting to see if we can finish this campaign unbeaten.
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