Liverpool 2-2 Man City : player ratings, man of match, heroes and villains as title challengers lock horns

It was a pulsating second period at Anfield in which the points were jointly shared.

Foden scores against Liverpool. Credit: Getty.

Liverpool and Manchester City played out an intriguing 2-2 draw at Anfield on Sunday, in what was a classic game of two halves.

It was the latter of those which really enthralled supporters and neutrals alike after a goalless opening 45 minutes. Sadio Mane and Mohamed Salah netted for the hosts after the break, while Phil Foden and Kevin De Bruyne twice got City back on level terms.

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But that only tells half the story of a game which saw a controversial referee decision, tactical tussles and several excellent performances.

The heroes

  • Phil Foden: The England international was at his brilliant best on Sunday. Described as an ‘absolute joy to watch’ by Gary Neville, Foden was City’s creator-in-chief against Jurgen Klopp’s side. His persistent running saw James Milner booked in the first half, and he netted an excellent goal in the 69th minute.
  • Sky Sports: The broadcaster spent all week hyping up the epic tussle between the sides who have won the league title in all of the last five seasons. While the first half didn’t catch fire, the second period certainly did with four goals and refereeing controversies, all of which was played at lightning-quick pace.
  • Mohamed Salah: The Liverpool No.11 gave an excellent display and scored a goal-of-the-season contender in the 76th minute, when he bypassed several City defenders and smashed the ball past Ederson with his right foot. Salah also provided the assist for Mane’s opener.
Salah scored a sensational solo goal at Anfield. Credit: Getty.

The villains

  • Jack Grealish: That’s two tough games in a row for the £100m man, who failed to show his best qualities against Paris Saint-Germain and Liverpool. Grealish was actually deployed as a makeshift striker at Anfield, a position he just didn’t look comfortable in, and was taken off after 66 minutes.
  • Paul Tierney: The referee really should have shown James Milner a second yellow card prior to Salah’s goal, when he floored Bernardo Silva. Guardiola was justifiably livid with Tierney, although the City boss did receive a booking for his animated reaction to the decision.
Grealish was hooked in the second period. Credit: Getty.

Player ratings:

Liverpool (4-3-3): Alisson 7; Milner 5 (Gomez 78), Van Dijk 6, Matip 6, Robertson 6; Henderson 5, Fabinho 6, Jones 5; Salah 8, Jota 5 (Firmino 67;6), Mane 6.

Man City (4-3-3): Ederson 6; Walker 5, Dias 6, Laporte 6, Cancelo 6; De Bruyne 5, Rodri 6, Silva 8; Jesus 7, Grealish 4 (Sterling 66;5), Foden 9.

What’s next?

After a two-week international break, Guardiola’s men return with a home Premier League clash against Burnley on Saturday 16th October, 3pm kick-off. After that, City travel to Belgium to take on Club Brugge in the Champions League.