Liverpool player ratings v Besiktas: Ibe stars, but Allen sputters

Mario Balotelli's late penalty at Anfield sealed Liverpool a 1-0 win over Besiktas in Thursday night's first-leg of their Europa League last-32 tie.

Simon Mignolet 7/10 – Made a superb stop from Demba Ba in the first-half and dealt with whatever else was thrown at him. The struggles of past months seem to have all but vanished.

Emre Can 6/10 – Moved out of the back three into midfield during the second-half, and looked comfortable enough in both roles. Wasn’t his best performance due to a few wasteful moments on the ball after the break but is proving himself a valuable member of the side.

Martin Skrtl 6.5/10 – A solid outing, albeit one in which he was tested on few occasions.

Mamadou Sakho 7/10 – Seems to be growing in confidence in recent weeks. Distribution is much-improved and few attackers can outmatch him for strength. Managed to keep the dangerous Gokhan Tore in check.

Jordon Ibe 8/10 – An outstanding performance from the teenager, who looked like the most confident figure on the pitch. Made endless determined runs at the Turkish side’s defence and later won the crucial spot-kick. Liverpool have a real prospect on their hands.

Jordan Henderson 7/10 – An overall good night from the stand-in skipper. Helped out in defence and also contributed to several of his side’s best attacking moves.

Joe Allen 5/10 – Neat on the ball, as usual, but just wasn’t incisive enough to cause Besiktas problems before going off for Lovren.

Alberto Moreno 7/10 – The wing-back role suits him to a T. Got forward with aplomb and offered enough in defence to keep the opposition quiet.

Adam Lallana 5.5/10 – Had a horrendous miss just after the break, blazing over the bar from close-range when faced with a wide open net. Tried to get into the game but couldn’t make the desire impact in possession.

Philippe Coutinho 6/10 – Showed a few great moments of skill but was nowhere near as influential as he would have liked. Talent is evident, though, and doesn’t look like it will take much to unlock it.

Daniel Sturridge 6/10 – Seems to be getting back into the groove after the long absence but the rust is still evident in a handful of poor touches.


Dejan Lovren (Allen 63) 6/10 – A solid cameo which allowed for a slight formation shift. Will need a bigger test to see whether he’s over his recent struggles, though.

Mario Balotelli (Coutinho 63) 7.5/10 – Changed the game after coming on, giving Liverpool a much-needed attacking spark. Have to admire the confidence with which he tucked home the penalty, too, even if he did steal it from Henderson.

Raheem Sterling (Lallana 77) 6.5/10 – Looked bright in his short time on the pitch, showing no ill-effects from the recent foot problem.

FIFA World Cup 2018FIFA 2018 World Cup Russia - click here for all of our coverage...

Register for LIVERPOOL team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch