Liverpool

Mane may have shone for Liverpool, but James Milner was their best player against West Ham

Mane may have shone for Liverpool, but James Milner was their best player against West Ham

Liverpool supporters in the Transfer Tavern have been in fine voice in recent times after seeing their team begin the 2018/19 Premier League with a routine victory on Sunday.

Jurgen Klopp’s men were being tipped by many during pre-season to be the main challengers to champions Manchester City for the title this term, and they underlined their credentials with a majestic 4-0 thrashing of West Ham at Anfield this weekend. A brace from Sadio Mane as well as strikes from Mohamed Salah and Daniel Sturridge sealed a comprehensive victory for the Merseyside giants, thus getting their season off to the best possible start.

Thus, there have been many thrilled Liverpudlians up and down the country in the last few hours, several of whom have been heaping praise on Senegal international Mane, whose brace played a vital part in securing all three points, and whose all round display was something to saviour on Sunday afternoon.

Yet it was the performance of £13.5 million-rated midfielder James Milner (as per Transfermarkt) that has thrilled several around the country, with it arguable that the 32-year-old was indeed the Reds’ best player against Manuel Pellegrini’s Hammers.

The Englishman may have felt that his place in the centre of midfield was under threat this season following the summer arrivals of Naby Keita and Fabinho, yet the former Leeds United and Newcastle United man has certainly given Klopp food for thought after an excellent display on Sunday.

Nobody had more touches of the ball than the England international (122), while he showed his tenacity and desire to help the team by covering more ground than anybody else on the pitch over the 90 minutes.

And while his off the ball skills obviously deserve highlighting, they shouldn’t overshadow just how good he was on the ball as well in making more accurate passes (95) than any other Liverpool player, while his tally of three key passes was also a Reds high.

He deservedly got his assist in brilliantly setting up Mane for Liverpool’s second just before half time – it looked for all the world that the ball was going to head out of play, only for the 32-year-old to brilliantly pull it back across the six-yard box for the Senegalese star, who slotted home at a crucial time in the match.

Ultimately, that assist was typical Milner, and alongside his overall efforts in the midfield three in Klopp’s team, Liverpool’s best player on the day has certainly given the manager a selection headache ahead of their next clash against Crystal Palace a week today.

Liverpool fans… what do you think? Let us know!

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