RB Leipzig vs. Liverpool Champions League player ratings: Trent Alexander-Arnold, Mohamed Salah lead Reds – CBSSports.com

Liverpool defeated RB Leipzig, 2-0, in the first leg during Champions League Round of 16 action at Puskas Stadium in Budapest, Hungary on Tuesday. Liverpool now have an advantage as the two sides head into the second leg next month. As the Reds celebrate their victory, take a look at some player and manager ratings from Tuesday’s match. 

Ratings are on a scale of 1 to 10, with a 1 being an early red card send off while a 10 is a hat-trick level performance. 

Liverpool ratings

Alisson: After a quiet first half, the Brazilian was sprightly on his feet to deny Christopher Nkunku early in the second, a rare moment of action on a day where Alisson could relish not being the center of attention. RATING: 6

Trent Alexander-Arnold: A hugely improved performance from the full-back, who was able to spend most of the match focusing on his attacking strengths. Indeed this was almost Alexander-Arnold as quarter-back with the defender creating four chances in the first half, as many as Leipzig and double that of his teammates. RATING: 9

Jordan Henderson: After some early wobbles in terms of their defensive shape, Henderson took charge impressively. His strong reading of the game meant he was invariably the first man to any RB Leipzig cross; no player on either side recovered possession more frequently. RATING: 7

Ozan Kabak: He is certainly still learning the ropes of top-tier European football as he proved with one dreadful tackle but alongside the steadying influence of Henderson he did not put another foot wrong in a steady second game in a Liverpool shirt. RATING: 7

Andrew Robertson: The Scot was less cavalier than his full-back on the opposite flank but when called on to defend he did so excellently, including a strong clearing header from a dangerous Leipzig free-kick. Not once did he misplace a pass in the final third. RATING: 7

Georginio Wijnaldum: At times functioning as the third center-back that allowed the full-backs to get forward, Wijnaldum was a solid presence without the ball who kept Liverpool on the front foot in possession. RATING: 7

Thiago: Another player who looked so much better than he had been in recent weeks, Thiago was largely able to play on the front foot with Wijnaldum picking up more of the defensive work. The Spaniard was aggressive in his interceptions and seemed to know where Dayot Upamecano’s passes were going before the Leipzig defender did. RATING: 8

Curtis Jones: The story of Jones’ season has been him looking totally at ease as the occasions have grown ever more challenging and that was just as true in Budapest, where his pressing was immaculate. So often a Leipzig midfielder would give the ball away and Liverpool’s No.17 would be nearby. RATING: 7

Mohamed Salah: He might have had two but for very good goalkeeping from Gulacsi but when a clear cut chance fell his way he was clinical in the extreme. After finding the net there was a real swagger to his performance, a willingness to try the difficult thing in search of more goals. It nearly paid off. RATING: 8

Roberto Firmino: He was a crucial cog in disrupting Leipzig’s back three and in particular Upamecano, dropping deep to drag him up the pitch and open up lines for Salah and Mane to attack. As ever, it worked like a treat. RATING: 7

Sadio Mane: Another who reprised his best Liverpool form, Mane was the tip of the spear in his side’s impressive pressing, always in place to force the sort of mistake that saw Mukiele allow him to break through for the second goal. RATING: 8

Jurgen Klopp: The German deserves almighty credit for picking Liverpool off the floor in a matter of days, seemingly by returning to the fundamentals that have served this team so well of late. He said before the game he was enjoying the challenges this season had foisted upon him; that attitude certainly seems to be reflected by his players too. RATING: 8

RB Leipzig ratings

Peter Gulacsi: A good showing in the first half and his positioning helped keep things scoreless until the wheels fell off the backline in the second half. Rating: 7.5

Nordi Mukiele: Good first half but his mistake on Liverpool’s second goal proved too large a hill for Leipzig to climb. Rating: 5

Dayot Upamecano: Strong showing in the first half to help keep Liverpool at bay and keep things scoreless into halftime, good recoveries in the second half Rating: 7

Lukas Klostermann: Helped hold things down in the back line, and did well to find passing lanes to try and spearhead attacks. Rating: 6.5

Kevin Kampl: Was largely tasked with trying to disrupt Liverpool’s pressure on the day, a solid first half. Was subbed out due to the team needing more attacking options. Rating: 7

Tyler Adams: The American was tasked with playing higher in an effort to help the team generate offense. Covered lots of ground while providing service even late into the match. Rating: 7

Angelino: Has been in top form as of late but almost appeared to get in his own way at times doing too much. Remained active for the team all match. Rating: 6.5

Amadou Haidara: Little impact in the midfield for his team and got worked around fairly easily by Liverpool, was subbed out early in the second half. Rating: 6

Marcel Sabitzer: Had to cover lots of ground against Liverpool’s pressure. Played connector and disrupter, but was unable to truly help generate attacking options. Rating: 6.5

Dani Olmo: Strong effort on the ball in trying to generate offense and create his own shots. Good combining on the top line. Rating: 7

Christopher Nkunku: Had some of the better looks on goal for the team, including a one-on-one opportunity. Good link up play with other attacking options as urgency kicked in. Rating: 7

Yussuf Poulson : Was subbed on to try and make an impact and his movement on and off the ball provided early looks in dangerous spaces for Leipzig. Rating 7

Willi Orban: Subbed on for Mukiele past the hour mark after a mistake led to a second quick goal. Didn’t provide a whole lot to change the game, but did his job on the backline. Rating: 6.5

Hwang Hee-Chan: Was subbed on in the final 15 minutes for Kampl as an extra attacking option, not enough time to have a big impact but had good positioning and applied pressure. Rating: 6

Liverpool and Leipzig meet again on March 10 for the second leg. You can view that match and every Champions League game on CBS All Access.

This content was originally published here.

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