Liverpool’s performance in the 1-0 win against Newcastle United was enough to earn two Reds a place in a Premier League team of the week.
Writing for BBC Sport, Garth Crooks selected the duo from Jurgen Klopp’s side and first up was Virgil van Dijk: ‘Another clean sheet and another enjoyable day at the office for Van Dijk. I thought this was an extraordinary performance by Liverpool.
‘Having played Villareal in the Champions League semi-final on Wednesday night, travelling to Newcastle for a 12:30pm kick-off at St James Park three days later and coming away with a victory – bearing in mind the form Newcastle have been in – was outstanding’.
Next up for the 64-year-old was Naby Keita: ‘James Milner’s challenge for the ball with Newcastle defender Fabian Schar led to Naby Keita’s superbly taken goal which took the Reds back to the top of the table for a short while.
‘There was no doubt in my mind, or Andre Marriner’s mind for that matter, that Milner got to the ball first. It was a crisp tackle and perfectly judged by the referee.
‘Keita has found himself sharing the defensive midfield role with Thiago who has also been playing particularly well lately. Both men it would appear can be relied upon to do what is needed to get a result when it matters’.
The pair were examples of the manager wanting to rotate the side to keep legs fresh but also not wanting to change too much, in order to keep structure and rhythm to the team.
In our No.4, there’s no bigger credit to his comeback from injury and importance to the team than the fact he was asked to play from the start yet again.
As with our Guinean midfielder, he keeps taking every chance that’s handed to him and few would argue he deserves to start in any of the gigantic games coming up this month.