Five things learned from Liverpool's West Brom win: Henderson, Lallana & Lovren feature

The Reds' 2-1 win over the Baggies was the perfect response to their recent run of form. Here are five conclusions from the victory...

Rodgers responds

The pressure was on Brendan Rodgers after Liverpool's dour loss in Switzerland this week. Critics were rightly asking questions and some people, misguidedly no doubt, were even calling for his head.

But the Northern Irishman has responded with aplomb. Yes, this was only a 2-1 home win against West Brom. Compared to Liverpool's recent form, however, what an improvement?

Change was needed and Rodgers provided it: Mario Balotelli and Lazar Markovic were dropped. Liverpool needed to show they had other ideas and they did: there was a Plan B and plenty more width. And everything from the Reds boss's stern pre-match press conference to his substitutions were spot on this week. Fair play.

Lallana proving his worth... was Markovic even needed?

What a day it was for Adam Lallana, too, who scored his first goal for Liverpool at Anfield. A brilliant goal it was, as well, as the former Southampton ace combined beautifully with Jordan Henderson to open the scoring.

The 26-year-old looks to have a bright future on Merseyside - which is less than can be said for Lazar Markovic. Okay, the winger is only 20 and could yet grown into a Liverpool legend. But he wasn't needed at all this weekend; Rodgers' side looked so much better without him.

Henderson at his brilliant best

Another supreme performer was man-of-the-match Jordan Henderson. What a display, in fact, from the England midfielder, who registered both a goal and an assist and changed the game with his energy.

Henderson's starting berth at Anfield looks like it is never going to be in doubt.

Lambert works harder than Balotelli

Up front, Liverpool have more questions to answer - but Saturday provided a few hints toward the future. Balotelli looked far more energetic after coming on, meaning being dropped was perhaps the tough love he needed.

Rickie Lambert's performance was even more encouraging, though. Granted, his touch was occasionally sloppy and he didn't excessively threaten Ben Foster in the West Brom goal. His work-rate was unquestioned, however, and he offers the kind of target-man threat the Reds will need against sides like the Baggies.

Lovren and Manquillo should be dropped

Sadly, there were few positives to come from Liverpool's defending - and how many times have we heard that over the past two years?

Interestingly, Glen Johnson was actually a positive after coming on for Javier Manquillo. The man he replaced, though, has been in terrible form lately, with a misplaced pass of his leading to the penalty incident that saw West Brom equalise in the second half.

Dejan Lovren gave that penalty away with a suicidal tackle. For their own long-term benefit, Rodgers could do worse than dropping the duo for the time being.

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