PLAYER RATINGS: Kevin De Bruyne Shines’s Manchester City Demolition Of Liverpool

PLAYER RATINGS: Kevin De Bruyne Shines’s Manchester City Demolition Of Liverpool
Sep 9, 2017

Featured Liverpool Manchester City

Manchester City sent out a massive statement of intent to their title rivals by demolishing 10-men Liverpool at the Etihad Stadium this afternoon. Guardiola’s side, who entered the contest behind the Reds on goal difference in the table, swept aside Jurgen Klopp’s side to move to the top of the Premier League table in a one-sided affair.

Liverpool’s task was made more arduous when trailing 1-0, winger Sadio Mané was controversially dismissed after a high foot on Manchester City’s goalkeeper Ederson Moraes – and from then on, there was only one side that was in the contest. Prior to the visitors being reduced to 10 men, Sergio Agüero had put the hosts ahead after rounding Simon Mignolet and slotting into the net.

Gabriel Jesus then doubled City’s lead, glancing home just before the break. Pep Guardiola’s side continued to set carnage to the Merseysiders’ impotent defence – with Agüero setting up the Brazilian international for his second & the Sky Blues’ third. Substitute Leroy Sané completed the rout with two late goals; one at Mignolet’s far post, the other a left-foot curling shot into the corner.

Here’s how the players fared at the Etihad Stadium on Saturday lunchtime.


Ederson Moraes: 7/10

The Portuguese made a fine close-range stop to deny Mohamed Salah, but otherwise, he was fairly untroubled. Was forced off early on due to Sadio Mané’s high foot.

Danilo: 7/10

Danilo initially struggled against Liverpool’s high pressing early on but looked far more assured on the ball afterwards – although he had little to do throughout.

John Stones: 7/10

The 23-year-old was stepping in for the injured Vincent Kompany and delivered a display which would’ve done the Belgian proud. Won several aerial duels throughout.

Nicolas Otamendi: 6.5/10

Otamendi was given a torrid time by winger Mohamed Salah throughout – and the Argentine international picked up a yellow card early on for a foul on the latter as he looked increasingly nervous in 1v1 situations. Did improve in the second half as the Reds’ threat subsided.

Kyle Walker: 7/10

Was very reliable defensively, and delivered plenty of attacking thrust going forward. Looks at home in his wing-back role.

Fernandinho: 7.5/10

The Brazilian had another quietly effective performance, winning balls throughout and creating the opportunity which lead to the third goal.

Kevin De Bruyne: 9/10

The Belgian’s final ball was superb throughout and showed terrific awareness combined with vision to set up Agüero’s opener. What somewhat baffling how he didn’t win Sky’s MOTM award.

David Silva: 7/10

In truth, Silva wasn’t able to have the influence he would’ve hoped early on – but settled into the game following Sadio Mané’s red card. Looked very tidy on the ball.

Benjamin Mendy: 7.5/10

Operating as a wing-back, Mendy was another of Man City’s standout performers – winning 2 tackle, 2 take-ons as well as an assist. Given the license to roam further forward, he showed what he was truly capable of.

Gabriel Jesus – 8/10

Staked another close claim for Man Of The Match.

Jesus was full of desire and hunger in the opening stages, probing the full-backs and forcing Ragnar Klavan into several errors. He was rewarded with his persistence – taking both of his two goals in fine fashion.

Sergio Agüero: 8/10

The Argentine really does fancy a game against Liverpool.

Agüero’s goal v the Reds on Saturday meant it was the sixth successive time in the Premier League that he had scored against Klopp’s side, and was a constant menace to the visitors’ defence, exploiting space between the 2 CBs to score the opener.


Claudio Bravo: 6/10

Was called in to fill in between the sticks following Ederson’s injury in the first half, but had very little to do.

Leroy Sané: 8/10

Brought in for Jesus early in the second half, and it took him very little time to make an impact, adding two goals to add to Liverpool’s misery. His quick feet and dribbling caused Liverpool’s CBs something different to think about.

Eliaquim Mangala: 6/10

The Frenchman was rarely threatened by the likes of Firmino or Salah throughout and was fairly solid in his positioning and on the ball too.


Simon Mignolet: 6/10

Could do very little about all of Man City’s five goals.

Trent Alexander-Arnold: 5/10

Was at times regularly used as a pressing trigger from Man City early on, and often lost possession. Earned himself a booking after a foul on De Bruyne early on.

Jöel Matip: 4/10

Matip, who has been touted as Liverpool’s more reliable CB out of their available personnel, had a poor game alongside Ragnar Klavan. Was caught out of position for the first & second goal.

Ragnar Klavan: 4/10

Klavan was brought into the team over Dejan Lovren, with the latter expected to start at the Etihad Stadium despite Liverpool’s upcoming Champions League exploits on Wednesday. The Estonian struggled throughout, and was exposed heavily by Klopp’s high pressing system along with his CB partner, Matip.

Alberto Moreno: 5/10

Struggled up against the creative threat against Kevin De Bruyne throughout – this game only served to highlights the frailties to the defensive side of his game.

Jordan Henderson: 4/10

Henderson has received a lot of flak for his performances during the international break lately, and this game did little to help his case. He failed to win a single tackle throughout, as well as failing to win an aerial duel either. His crosses were often wayward too.

Emre Can: 5/10

Can was probably marginally one of Liverpool’s better midfielders – was slightly more tidier on the ball, but far from covered himself in glory throughout. Was dropped into the defence after half-time, and looked all over the shop.

Georginio Wijnaldum: 4/10

Liverpool supporters were hoping for a more authoritative performance from Wijnaldum, who often steps to the plate in games v top sides. However, he was instead anonymous throughout – making only one tackle and interception throughout.

Mohamed Salah: 6/10

Was by far the Reds’ most dangerous player, with his runs down the left giving Otamendi a very tough time. His pace and skill was a constant threat, but he missed a great opportunity when clear through – however, he could only power an effort at Ederson. Replaced at half time for Alex Oxlade Chamberlain.

Roberto Firmino: 5/10

Was peripheral throughout, failing to provide the intelligence and runs that have seen him start the season in fine fettle.

Sadio Mané: 6/10

Was one of the visitors’ more threatening players until his dismissal for a high foot on Ederson in the first half. His pace, quick feet and movement caused several problems during his spell on the pitch.


Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain: 5/10

The Englishman was making his debut for Liverpool, having been brought on at half-time for Salah. He couldn’t impact the game, operating in a more advanced midfield role.

James Milner: 5/10

Introduced to the fray in the 59th minute, the former Manchester City midfielder could not add the much needed industry/creativity to the midfield as he received a hostile reception from the home supporters.

Dominic Solanke: 5/10

Also, made very little impact throughout to bother the hosts’ back three.


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