Liverpool gave a very much Jekyl and Hyde performance last night. Outstanding in the first-half yet pretty bad in the second.
Arvin Raj rates the Liverpool display player by player...
Simon Mignolet - 7
Nervy start to the game but was unfortunate not to prevent Shelvey's opener, despite spreading himself well, to finally concede his first goal of the league season. Grew in stature as the game went on, displaying his shot-stopping prowess, but could do nothing to deny Michu's expertly taken finish.
Andre Wisdom - 5
Looked ruffled in the first-half as he struggled to come to terms with the pace of Swansea's attack. A lack of composure on the ball coupled with an infrequent and unavailable outlet meant he either lost possession or could only pass the ball backwards. Wisdom's limited ability going forward again raises the question whether he can continue to operate as a right-back and is actually a more viable centre-back alternative.
Martin Skrtel - 6
Unlucky to see Shelvey's shot squirm under his body that led to the opening goal but did excellently to deny an almost certain Wilfred Bony goal later on with a last ditch sliding clearance after Mignolet could not par a shot to the right wide enough.
Mamadou Sakho - 5
Sakho's predeliction to step up and over commit were fatal as Shelvey profited from the space he left behind him for the first goal. In almost mirror fashion the former Liverpool player was able to run in behind Sakho to nod on for Michu's goal after the French international followed the ball into midfield. An unconvincing start to his Liverpool career but the potential is there to see nevertheless. Good with the ball at his feet.
Jose Enrique - 6
Annonymous in an attacking sense as his use of the ball was never the best, with frequent long passes going astray. Put his body to good effect by placing himself between the opposition player and the ball in what has become somewhat of a trademark of Enrique and his good body strength.
Lucas Leiva - 6
Booked for a silly skirmish with Jonjo Shelvey the Brazillian was unable to assert his full authority on proceedings and that flashpoint exempiflied his frustrations. Could have done better to track Shelvey's run for both Swansea goals which will only lead to further doubts about whether Lucas is a natural defensive midfielder
Steven Gerrard - 6
Despite some excellent set-piece deliveries this was another game that passed Gerrard by. Like his midfield partner Lucas he was unable to really get a grip of the game and stamp control. Partially at fault for the first goal as he turned his back on Shelvey who began his rampage into the box with a mishit shot. The Reds captain badly needs a goal
Phillipe Coutinho - 7
One of the few brighter sparks for Liverpool, Coutinho was the link between midfield and attack in the first-half that allowed the away side to dominate possession. His quick feet, close control and probes were a joy to behold and further strengthen his case for the number 10 position behind Strurridge. His game was curtailed by injury in the second half after receiving a sore shoulder from a clash with Ashley Williams. Liverpool's flow was disrupted by his absence as a result
Victor Moses - 7
Terrific first-half in which he capped his hard running and effervescent skill with a well taken goal, wrapping his foot around the ball to leave Vorm with little chance. The great wing-play to set up a stonewall chance for Sturridge deserved a goal. Faded in the second-half and was subsequently replaced by Raheem Sterling
Jordan Henderson - 6
A typically solid, energetic and tidy performance from Henderson meant that he kept Liverpool's midfield tight and compact at times but his forays forward left a lot to be desired as the visitors missed a spark from the wide areas, especially in the second-half. Too often keen to pass the ball infield.
Daniel Sturridge - 8
Showed no ill effects of a recent thigh strain as he started off sharply, showing great anticipation to steal in on Shelvey's blind backpass to Vorm early on and finish with aplomb. The great run to take away Rangel and Flores to leave Moses with space to score was intuitive play and the 24-year-old is proving not just to be an explosive footballer, but quite a clever one at that
Iago Aspas - 5
Continually condeded possession and easily shrugged off the ball, the spanish forward could not get into the game and his introduction had no affect in stemming the increasing Swansea tide whatsoever
Raheem Sterling - 6
Fared a little better than Aspas with his direct pacy runs but didn't help Liverpool's cause in holding on to the ball. Still very young, there is still much more to come from this precocious talent.
Kolo Toure - 5
Unlike Sturridge his injury clearly left him worse for wear on his return but playing in a now unfamiliar right-back role didn't help his cause as he gave away possession cheaply. Toure's vocal presence did give the Liverpool defence renewed vigour however to aid the side in seeing the game out without defeat and thus maintain their unbeaten start to the campaign.
image: © nathan17