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Bobby Firmino takes the match ball – Player ratings from Liverpool 5-1 Arsenal

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Liverpool players celebrate against Arsenal

Liverpool players celebrate against Arsenal

Liverpool were supreme against Arsenal as we pumped five past Unai Emery’s men. Surprisingly we conceded the opening goal of the game as Ainsley Maitland-Niles scored in the 11th minute.

However, the lead did not last long as a mix-up in the Arsenal defence allowed Roberto Firmino to score in an empty net.

The Brazilian followed it up with another brilliant goal in the 14th minute as he single-handedly took the defence apart and slotted past Bernd Leno.

Mohamed Salah set up Sadio Mane for our third before we got a late penalty in the first half which the Egyptian scored.

We got another pen in the second after Dejan Lovren was fouled, and Salah allowed Firmino to capture his hat-trick and take home the match ball.

The win, coupled with Tottenham’s loss, opened up a nine-point lead at the top of the table before Manchester City played, and here are our player ratings from the clash.

Alisson – 7.5/10

The Brazilian commanded the box well but couldn’t do much for the goal conceded. Alisson’s distribution was great too as his laser pass helped win our first pen.

Trent Alexander-Arnold scores for Liverpool

Trent Alexander-Arnold – 7/10

The Englishman had an alright game at the back but his passing wasn’t always on point.

Dejan Lovren – 7/10

Gave the ball away for Arsenal’s goal and was out of position but got us a penalty in the second half.

Virgil van Dijk – 7.5/10

The Dutch defender had a decent game at the back as he ensured Arsenal couldn’t create more after that first goal.

Andy Robertson – 7/10

The Scot was tested a lot by Maitland-Niles and had to be careful after picking up a yellow card. The left-back helped create the third goal too.

Georginio Wijnaldum – 8.5/10

Wijnaldum wasn’t amongst the goals but he did a great job in keeping Arsenal in check and kept our midfield ticking.

Fabinho of Liverpool

Fabinho bossed Manchester United

Fabinho – 7/10

The Brazilian had some iffy moments as his passing wasn’t on point but had a much better game in the second half.

Xherdan Shaqiri – 7.5/10

Shaqiri did really well as he helped out in attack and also did his bit by chasing the Arsenal players down.

Sadio Mane – 8.5/10

Got a well-deserved goal in the first half and his performance was brilliant as he made life difficult for Arsenal’s defence.

Roberto Firmino – 9/10

Firmino brought Liverpool back into the game as he kept running for the first goal, got a brilliant second and was given the pen for the third goal. A fine hat-trick for some quality performances throughout the season.

Roberto Firmino and Andy Robertson

Roberto Firmino and Andy Robertson

Mohamed Salah – 7.5/10

The Egyptian didn’t have a great game, to be honest. He scored a pen, assisted Mane’s goal but he was not the best of our attackers.

Substitutes

Jordan Henderson – 6/10

The captain came on to calm things down and give us more control in the second half.

Adam Lallana – 5/10

Came on to give Wijnaldum a well-deserved break.

Read more: “He can play Premier League football this season” – Klopp provides encouraging update on injured Englishman

Nathaniel Clyne – NA

The right-back came on to give Robertson a rest.

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La Liga giants slap a £94m price tag on star Liverpool target

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Liverpool FC transfer news: Barcelona slap £94million price-tag on Liverpool target Ousmane Dembele

AS (h/t Liverpool Echo) reports that Barcelona have slapped a £94million price-tag on reported Liverpool target Ousmane Dembele.

The French attacker joined the Catalans from Borussia Dortmund in 2017 and scored 14 times last season.

Ousmane Dembele
Ousmane Dembele

However, the Frenchman has had his issues at the Catalan giants and missed a training session last season too. Barcelona want £94million for the 22-year-old forward, which would help them recoup the initial amount they paid to Dortmund (h/t Liverpool Echo).

Neymar is being targeted for a sensational return to the Nou Camp, and the report claims that Dembele could leave in the summer.

Neymar left for PSG with Dembele being his replacement, and it would be another big deal if he returns to the Catalan giants in the transfer window.

Liverpool could do with another attacker in the team

The Reds could do with another quality attacker to cover the front-three.

Liverpool were lucky that Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mane and Roberto Firmino did not pick up major injuries last season, and we have also seen Daniel Sturridge leave the club.

Dembele can play anywhere across the front-line and has the potential to improve further under Jurgen Klopp.

Spending £94million might be a little excessive, however, the German has been excellent with his buys at Liverpool.

Read more Liverpool transfer news, click here – Latest Liverpool transfer news

It would be difficult to guarantee regular starts for Dembele, but Klopp has shown that he can keep the midfielders happy despite loads of competition for places.

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Liverpool have no plans to move for 24-year-old Portuguese sensation linked with Man United

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Liverpool FC transfer news: Reds are not interested in Sporting’s Bruno Fernandes

The Evening Standard reports that Liverpool are not interested in Sporting Lisbon star Bruno Fernandes.

Portuguese reports (h/t Daily Star) claimed that the Reds had bid for the 24-year-old as they tried to beat Manchester United.

Bruno Fernandes
Bruno Fernandes

Fernandes had a great season for Sporting, racking up 20 goals and 13 assists in the league. The 24-year-old also broke into the national team and lifted the Nations League trophy recently.

The Portuguese international can play in several positions and would have provided cover for several players at Anfield.

The Reds don’t need to make a lot of signings given the quality of the starting XI, but we could do with some cover for our top players.

However, the Standard claims that the Reds have no plans to sign the Portuguese midfielder despite suggestions that Rafael Camacho would be used as a makeweight in the deal.

Rafa Camacho

The Liverpool youngster has one year left on his deal and does not want to extend his stay at the club, according to the report.

Talks between clubs on for a while

The report claims that Liverpool and Sporting have been in talks since January but a deal to sign Camacho failed.

Read more Liverpool transfer news, click here – Latest Liverpool transfer news

The Portuguese giants are hopeful of getting a deal done in the summer, and their hopes have been boosted by Camacho’s reluctance to sign a new deal, according to the report.

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Liverpool face competition for world-class star as PL rivals bid £85m

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Latest Liverpool transfer news: Manchester City bid £85m for Kalidou Koulibaly

Gazzetta dello Sport (h/t Mirror) reports that Manchester City have bid £85million for Senegal star Kalidou Koulibaly.

City saw captain Vincent Kompany leave in the summer, and the report claims that the Premier League champions have also been linked with Leicester’s Harry Maguire.

Kalidou Koulibaly
Kalidou Koulibaly of Napoli

Pep Guardiola is keen to fill up this gap in his defence, according to the report, and Koulibaly has been linked with Manchester United in the past.

Liverpool are also interested in the 27-year-old and enquired about the centre-back, according to Il Mattino (h/t Mirror). The Mail reported that Koulibaly has a release clause of £133million in his contract, but that only kicks in next season.

The 27-year-old is one of the best defenders in the Serie A and could be a fantastic addition for City and Liverpool.

The Cityzens have a greater need in the heart of the defence after seeing Kompany leave, while Liverpool have seen Joe Gomez and Joel Matip perform incredibly last season.

Joel Matip of Liverpool
Joel Matip in training

The pair did well playing alongside Virgil van Dijk, but a partnership between the Dutch defender and Koulibaly would possibly be the best in the world.

Liverpool have to think of other positions first

The centre-back position isn’t all that important at the moment unless one of our senior defenders leaves in the summer.

We also need to find a replacement for Alberto Moreno and provide cover to Andy Robertson.

Read more Liverpool transfer news, click here – Liverpool FC transfer news

The Scot is the best left-back in the Premier League, and we were fortunate he didn’t miss many games due to injury last season.

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