Liverpool 2 Aston Villa 2: Player ratings as Reds fight back

Liverpool 2 Aston Villa 2: Player ratings as Paul Lambert's men deny the Reds three points at Anfield

Kieran Beckles
By Kieran Beckles
Liverpool
2
Aston Villa
2

Liverpool

Simon Mignolet Was caught waving to the Kop as Agbonlahor’s cross drifted over the Reds goalkeeper and plum onto the head of Benteke for Villa’s second. 4

Glen Johnson Allowed Clarke to come close with a header from a corner. Looked vulnerable defensively and offered little going forward. 5

Martin Skrtel A solid performance from the Slovakian. Wasn’t at fault for either of Villa’s goals. 6

Kolo Toure The Ivorian made an unsteady start as he lunged into a couple of rash challenges. Didn’t have the pace to cope with Agbonlahor for Weimann’s opener. 5

Aly Cissokho Offered an option going forward from left-back. Horribly out-of-position (and his depth) for Benteke’s header. Skied an effort into the stands in the 40th minute which epitomised a horrendous first-half for the home side. Not the defender’s best display. 4

Steven Gerrard Like the rest of his fellow Liverpool midfielders, the Reds skipper made a slow start. But it got worse, and Jamie Redknapp had a case when describing it as the midfielder’s worst-ever 45 minutes at Anfield. Made amends with a calmly taken penalty after the break. 5

Raheem Sterling Came up against a formidable opponent in the shape of Bertrand. Was a threat off the right wing, although lacked end product. 6

Jordan Henderson Arguably the only composed head in a Liverpool midfield otherwise in disarray. The England midfielder’s flick teed up Sturridge for his morale-boosting strike before half-time. 7

Philippe Coutinho The Brazilian wasn’t made to pay for a series of sloppy passes in the opening 15 minutes. Subbed at half-time. 4

Luis Suárez Made no notable contributions in the opening period as he attempted to win a couple of cheap free-kicks. However, the Uruguayan won the penalty which allowed Gerrard to equalise. 6

Daniel Sturridge Struggled to get his partnership with Suarez going in a torrid first half. After a wayward long-range attempt, the 24-year-old halved the deficit on the stroke of half-time with a dinked finish. 7

Substitutes

Lucas Leiva Came on at half-time but lasted 20 minutes before being replaced with a knee injury. N/A

Joe Allen N/A

Aston Villa

Brad Guzan Surprisingly, the American was left redundant in the first half. Stayed on the pitch after bringing down Suarez for the 52nd-minute penalty – it was the right decision as it was a soft spot-kick. Showed a strong hand to deny Henderson. 6

Leandro Bacuna Solid performance from the Villa defender. 6

Ron Vlaar (Man of the match) Solid start as he kept Suarez quiet in the first half. Apart from Sturridge’s strike, the Dutch defender rarely put a foot wrong. 8

Ciaran Clark Triggered angry cries from the Kop when he crashed a first-half header against the woodwork. The Republic of Ireland defender was assured alongside Vlaar. 7

Ryan Bertrand Came up against Liverpool’s in-form winger, Sterling. The Villa defender, on loan from Chelsea, made a solid start as he matched Sterling’s pace. 7

Ashley Westwood Tested Mignolet with an early half-volley from the edge of the Liverpool area. 6

Karim El Ahmadi Saw plenty of the ball as Villa produced a strong first-half performance. However, he faded after the interval. 6

Fabian Delph His passing was considered as he kept Villa ticking over. 7

Andreas Weimann A key part of Villa’s front three. The Austrian couldn’t miss for the 25th-minute opener with a simple finish. 7

Christian Benteke Scored a simple first-half header to hand Villa a 2-0 lead. A couple of nice touches but failed to have an impact in the second half. 7

Gabriel Agbonlahor Spurned a glorious opportunity to give the visitors an early lead after placing his finish the wrong side of the post. Out-foxed Toure to tee up Wiemann for the opener. Was forced off early in the second half. 8

Substitutes

Yacouba Sylla N/A

Grant Holt Didn’t have any real impact after his introduction. 4

Antonio Luna N/A

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