Power ranking Liverpool’s 2016/17 games: best to worst


1. Liverpool 6-1 Watford (Premier League, 6 November)

Watford might not have been the most taxing of opposition, but Liverpool were irresistible at Anfield, putting six past the Hornets and moving top of the Premier League 11 games in. Sadio Mane, Philippe Coutinho and Emre Can netted to give the Reds a 3-0 interval lead, with Roberto Firmino and Mane’s second making it five by the hour mark. Daryl Janmaat rescued a late consolation before Georgino Wijnaldum put the seal on a sumptuous Liverpool display.

2. Chelsea 1-2 Liverpool (Premier League, 16 September)

A rare Friday night outing for the Reds ended with an excellent win at Stamford Bridge. Dejan Lovren put Liverpool ahead from Philippe Coutinho’s cross before Jordan Henderson produced a goal of the season contender with a superb 25-yard curler. Chelsea pulled one back in the 59th minute through Diego Costa and Liverpool had to work hard to prevent Antonio Conte’s men from drawing level. One of the few times this season that the eventual champions were outclassed.

3. West Ham 0-4 Liverpool (Premier League, 14 May)

The pressure was firmly on Liverpool as they made their first visit to the London Stadium, with Arsenal hot on their heels for a top four finish, but how the Reds delivered. An exquisite through ball from Philippe Coutinho gave Daniel Sturridge the opportunity to open the scoring on 37 minutes before the Brazilian added two more in quick succession in the second half. Divock Origi rounded off the scoring on a sweet day for Jurgen Klopp’s side, even if they rode their luck with Andre Ayew’s miss and a stonewall penalty that West Ham should have had at 2-0.

4. Liverpool 5-1 Hull (Premier League, 24 September)

Newly-promoted Hull had made a decent start to the season but they were torn apart by a rampant Liverpool at Anfield. Adam Lallana, James Milner and Sadio Mane scored to put the Reds 3-0 up inside 36 minutes and even when David Meyler pulled one back for Hull after half-time, Philippe Coutinho restored the three-goal lead a minute later. Milner’s second penalty of the afternoon was the cherry on the icing as the Reds thrilled their jubilant supporters.

5. Everton 0-1 Liverpool (Premier League, 19 December)

Jurgen Klopp’s first visit to Goodison Park came a week before Christmas, and it was Sadio Mane who fulfilled the role of Santa for Reds supporters with a 94th-minute winner, the Senegal striker reacting quickest when Daniel Sturridge’s shot hit the post and rebounded out. The Reds survived first half pressure to dominate after half-time, while Everton were lucky not to have Ross Barkley sent off for a shocking foul on Jordan Henderson.

6. Liverpool 3-0 Middlesbrough (Premier League, 21 May)

On the final day of the season, the brief was simple for Liverpool: win, and a top four finish was theirs; anything else left them open to being overtaken. The first half was one for frustration for a nervy Liverpool, but Georginio Wijnaldum’s strike on the stroke of half-time was met with roars of relief, with Arsenal winning against Everton. Philippe Coutinho’s free kick early in the second half made it 2-0 and Adam Lallana soon put the result beyond doubt as the Reds ultimately eased their way into a much-coveted Champions League play-off berth.

7. Liverpool 2-0 Tottenham (Premier League, 11 February)

Without a league win in five games in 2017, high-flying Tottenham were hardly what Liverpool needed as they visited Anfield in mid-February, but the Reds looked much more like the title-chasing side on the evening. Two goals in as many minutes just after the quarter-hour from Sadio Mane left the home side in a dominant position and a Spurs team with such gifted attacking players hardly had a sniff of goal all night.

8. Liverpool 4-1 Leicester (Premier League, 10 September)

Anfield’s first match since the renovation of the Main Stand saw champions Leicester sent home with their tails firmly between their legs. Roberto Firmino opened the scoring on 13 minutes and Sadio Mane made it 2-0 just after the half-hour. An error from Lucas Leiva gifted a goal for Jamie Vardy but Liverpool never looked like being pegged back once Adam Lallana’s powerful shot found the top corner of the Foxes net on 56 minutes. Firmino added one more late on to give the expanded Anfield an ideal debut.

9. Liverpool 3-1 Arsenal (Premier League, 4 March)

A dismal first two months of 2017 meant that Liverpool’s place in the top four was under serious threat when rivals Arsenal came to Anfield in early March. However, the strange dropping of Alexis Sanchez was a welcome boost for the Reds, as was an early goal from Roberto Firmino. Sadio Mane doubled the lead on 39 minutes, but Danny Welbeck made it 2-1 in the 57th minute and Liverpool had to withstand sustained pressure before twisting the knife in stoppage time when Georgino Wijnaldum finished off a superb counterattack.

10. Arsenal 3-4 Liverpool (Premier League, 14 August)

A cracking opening weekend encounter saw Arsenal strike first through Theo Walcott before Philippe Coutinho equalised with a sweet free kick on the stroke of half-time. The first 15 minutes of the second half saw Liverpool blow the Gunners away with goals from Adam Lallana, Coutinho and Sadio Mane, with the Reds playing outstanding football. However, goals from Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Calum Chambers dragged Liverpool into a hard-fought contest that highlighted their attacking best and defensive worst, but it was a sound start to the season nonetheless.

11. Liverpool 1-0 Man City (Premier League, 31 December)

The final Premier League match of 2016 pitted together two heavyweights and it was Liverpool who struck the first blow through Georginio Wijnaldum’s eighth-minute header. The Reds were on the front foot during the first half but had to be disciplined and resilient after half-time as Man City’s attacking threat grew steadily greater. A fourth consecutive Anfield win over City kept Liverpool within touching distance of leaders Chelsea at the midway point of the season.

12. Liverpool 3-1 Everton (Premier League, 1 April)

In-form Everton were quietly confident of a first Anfield win in 17 years but they trailed after just eight minutes when Sadio Mane found the net. Liverpool’s familiar set piece frailties allowed Matthew Pennington to plunder an equaliser, but a superb curled effort from Philippe Coutinho soon had them back in the lead. Divock Origi sealed the win after half-time as the Reds were full value for a much-needed win, with Romelu Lukaku enduring one of his meekest games all season.

13. Middlesbrough 0-3 Liverpool (Premier League, 14 December)

The Riverside Stadium had not been a happy hunting ground for Liverpool, who arrived on Teesside on the back of two poor results that dented their title aspirations. This turned out to be a comfortable night, though, with Adam Lallana setting the ball rolling with his 29th-minute goal. Divock Origi made it 2-0 after an hour and Lallana finished off a neat move midway through the second half, the Reds impressively overcoming this potential banana skin.

14. Liverpool 4-1 Stoke (Premier League, 27 December)

With the Reds’ top four rivals winning on Boxing Day, they had to follow suit on the 27th against a Stoke side who were going well. Jonathan Walters gave the Potters an early lead, which was cancelled out on 35 minutes through Adam Lallana. Roberto Firmino put the Reds in front just before half-time and the second half was a stroll for Liverpool once Giannelli Imbula put through his own net on the hour mark. Daniel Sturridge was gifted the home side’s fourth goal of the night as the Reds impressively put a tricky Stoke team to the sword.

15. Stoke 1-2 Liverpool (Premier League, 8 April)

While the bet365 Stadium might not be the fortress of old, a trip to Stoke is never straightforward, especially when Champions League qualification was at stake. When Jonathan Walters got his customary goal against the Reds just before half-time, the outlook was grim, but the introduction of Philippe Coutinho and Roberto Firmino proved game-changing. Between minutes 69 and 71, the Brazilian duo turned the game on its head, Firmino’s volley one of the goals of the season. This was a major confidence-boosting win for Jurgen Klopp’s men when the gun was put to their heads.

16. Watford 0-1 Liverpool (Premier League, 1 May)

A Sunday of dropped points for the Reds’ top four-chasing rivals meant that this Monday night visit to Vicarage Road presented a glorious opportunity to capitalise. An early injury to Philippe Coutinho was concerning, but the nerves were steadied on the stroke of half-time when Emre Can produced a goal of outrageous brilliance with an overhead kick. Liverpool had chances to kill the game off put didn’t take them and were left grateful to the crossbar to stop Sebastian Prodl from equalising in stoppage time. It wasn’t pretty, but it was pretty sweet for the Reds.

17. West Brom 0-1 Liverpool (Premier League, 16 April)

The Reds haven’t won at West Brom in their last four visits, but three points were a must when they pitched up at The Hawthorns on Easter Sunday. A drab first half looked set to end goalless until Roberto Firmino dispatched a header just before the interval. James Milner contrived to miss from close range and the Baggies bombarded Liverpool’s goal in the closing minutes, but the visitors fell over the line to claim a vital away triumph. This was also the game which saw Alberto Moreno prove that he’s no Xabi Alonso when it comes to shooting from long range.

18. Swansea 1-2 Liverpool (Premier League, 1 October)

Liverpool arrived in south Wales on the back of three convincing league wins, but it was struggling Swansea who struck first through Leroy Fer on eight minutes. They held the lead until that juncture in the second half when Roberto Firmino’s glancing header levelled matters and Liverpool won it late on with a James Milner penalty. The visitors survived a stoppage time scare when Mike van der Hoorn missed from close range.

19. Liverpool 2-1 Tottenham (EFL Cup, 25 October)

Having overcome Championship opposition in their two previous EFL Cup games, the Reds saw off a stern challenge from Premier League mainstays Tottenham in Round 4. Daniel Sturridge put Liverpool into an early lead and added a second on 65 minutes, as well as hitting the crossbar. A charitable Vincent Janssen penalty gave Spurs late hope, but Liverpool progressed on a night that saw Danny Ings make a long-overdue return from injury.

20. Burton Albion 0-5 Liverpool (EFL Cup, 23 August)

It may have been Round 2 of the EFL Cup, but Jurgen Klopp wasn’t taking many chances with his team selection and the Reds had far too much for Championship outfit Burton. Divock Origi and Roberto Firmino had Liverpool 2-0 up inside 22 minutes and an own goal from Tom Naylor in the second half ended the home side’s chances of a comeback. Daniel Sturridge came off the bench to add two more as the Premier League club cruised through.

21. Crystal Palace 2-4 Liverpool (Premier League, 29 October)

A manic game which showcased Liverpool at their fluid attacking best and appalling defensive worst. Emre Can scored on 16 minutes, James McArthur equalised soon after and Dejan Lovren restored the lead almost straight away. More shoddy defending allowed McArthur a second goal after 33 minutes and Joel Matip had the Reds in front once more as half-time approached. A swift break with 20 minutes to go saw Roberto Firmino finally put daylight between the teams in an encounter that neutrals would have enjoyed but would test the patience of coaches and fans.

22. Man City 1-1 Liverpool (Premier League, 19 March)

Man City had been eliminated from the Champions League four days prior to Liverpool’s visit, with last season’s 4-1 Etihad romp fondly recalled. There was never any danger of a recurrence as the first half passed with little incident. The second 45 was an altogether different story. James Milner slotted a penalty against his former club before Sergio Aguero equalised on 69 minutes. Adam Lallana missed a late sitter but Kevin de Bruyne so nearly won it for City at the death, so it was a decent point away to a top four rival for the Reds.

23. Derby 0-3 Liverpool (EFL Cup, 20 September)

A Round 3 trip away to a Championship side was a hurdle easily overcome by Liverpool, with Jurgen Klopp again fielding a strong team in the EFL Cup. Ragnar Klavan put the Reds in front midway through the first half and two goals in quick succession from Philippe Coutinho and Divock Origi shortly after half-time made the remaining 35 or so minutes a stroll. There was a first team debut off the bench for promising youngster Ovie Ejaria, too.

24. Liverpool 2-0 Sunderland (Premier League, 26 November)

Liverpool had been winning home games in style earlier in the season, but they needed to be patient to forge a way past a resolute Sunderland at Anfield in late November. With Adam Lallana already injured, Philippe Coutinho hobbled off in the first half and it looked like being a frustrating day for the Reds before Divock Origi scored with 15 minutes remaining. James Milner added a stoppage time penalty while Ben Woodburn was introduced late on for his Premier League debut.

25. Man Utd 1-1 Liverpool (Premier League, 15 January)

The Reds’ form had started to dip when they visited an in-form Man Utd in mid-January, so this was a fixture fraught with danger. It was Liverpool who scored first, though, with a James Milner penalty on 27 minutes and they looked on course for a famous win at Old Trafford until Zlatan Ibrahimovic plundered a late equaliser. United almost won it in the dying minutes but defeat would have been harsh on the visitors, for whom Trent Alexander-Arnold impressed.

26. Liverpool 2-1 West Brom (Premier League, 22 October)

Liverpool drew level on points at the top of the league with this nervy win over West Brom in October. Sadio Mane opened the scoring on 20 minutes and Philippe Coutinho made it 2-0 in the 35th minute, prompting a carefully-choreographed celebration with Roberto Firmino. The Reds looked comfortable until Gareth McAuley pounced on a badly-defended corner with 10 minutes left to set up a tense finale, but Jurgen Klopp’s side got the job done.

27. Tottenham 1-1 Liverpool (Premier League, 27 August)

This was a third successive away league game for Liverpool at the start of the season, with Anfield’s redevelopment work not quite completed. James Milner gave the Reds a deserved lead from the penalty spot two minutes before half-time and Joel Matip later struck the crossbar, but Spurs rescued a point on 73 minutes when Danny Rose volleyed home Eric Dier’s cross. It felt like two points dropped at the time, but in the context of the season Tottenham would go on to have, this was a good draw in hindsight for Liverpool.

28. Liverpool 1-1 Chelsea (Premier League, 31 January)

After a miserable few days which brought three consecutive home defeats, the visit of runaway league leaders Chelsea did not bode well for the Reds. Liverpool actually started well but fell behind on 25 minutes to a deflected David Luiz free kick. Georgino Wijnaldum’s header levelled the game in the 57th minute and Simon Mignolet proved the Reds’ hero when he saved Diego Costa’s penalty. Sadio Mane made a brief cameo return after his African Nations Cup exploits as Liverpool held on for a hard-fought and badly-needed point.

29. Liverpool 2-1 Burnley (Premier League, 12 March)

With the Reds’ top four challengers all in FA Cup action this weekend, the opportunity to put league points on the board could not be missed against a team which hadn’t won away all season. However, it was Burnley who took an early lead through Ashley Barnes and Georginio Wijnaldum’s equaliser on the stroke of half-time was more than Liverpool deserved. Emre Can’s fine strike from distance proved to be the winning goal, but it was an unconvincing albeit crucial victory for Jurgen Klopp’s men.

30. Liverpool 2-0 Leeds (EFL Cup, 29 November)

Until the last 15 minutes, this EFL Cup quarter-final was a snorefest, but Liverpool prevailed thanks to Divock Origi and a landmark goal from Ben Woodburn, who just 45 days after his 17th birthday became Liverpool’s youngest ever first team goalscorer. Just as against Sunderland three days previously, the Reds toiled but found a way to win in the closing quarter of an hour.

31. Plymouth 0-1 Liverpool (FA Cup, 18 January)

For the second year in a row, Liverpool needed a reply to prevail against a League Two club in Round 3 of the FA Cup. A Reds team blending youth and experience took an 18th-minute lead with Lucas Leiva’s firm header and that could have been the cue for a comfortable night in Home Park. Instead, the Premier League club made very hard work of an unwanted assignment in an already packed January schedule, but at least they avoided an embarrassing cup exit.

32. Liverpool 0-0 Man Utd (Premier League, 17 October)

Sky Sports billed this one as ‘Red Monday’ with Liverpool flying and Man Utd struggling for form. Just as he did with Chelsea in 2013/14, though, Jose Mourinho came to Anfield to choke the life out of Liverpool and a dour goalless draw saw him accomplish that mission. It was a night when David de Gea proved why he is one of the world’s top goalkeepers, the Spaniard producing fine saves from Emre Can and Philippe Coutinho, although Zlatan Ibrahimovic also spurned a glorious chance to snatch what would have been a smash-and-grab win for United.

33. Southampton 0-0 Liverpool (Premier League, 19 November)

Liverpool arrived at St Mary’s as the league leaders, having won seven of their previous league games, but Southampton would prove to be frustrating opponents for the Merseysiders. While a trip to the south coast is rarely straightforward, the number of opportunities that Liverpool spurned on a rainy afternoon made this feel like two points squandered rather than one gained.

34. Sunderland 2-2 Liverpool (Premier League, 2 January)

Liverpool’s first match of 2017 set the tone for what would prove to be a disastrous start to the year. Daniel Sturridge gave the Reds a first half lead, which was cancelled out by a Jermain Defoe penalty. Sadio Mane, in his last club game before departing for the African Nations Cup, restored the visitors’ advantage but a second Defoe penalty late on meant that the Merseysiders returned home frustrated.

35. Liverpool 0-0 Southampton (Premier League, 7 May)

This was a fixture fraught with danger for the Reds, whose home form had been jittery and who had failed to beat Southampton in three previous meetings during the season. The match took on a familiar pattern, with Liverpool dominating possession and territory but finding a massed defence too difficult to break down. Even when the home side were awarded a penalty, James Milner’s spot kick was saved by Fraser Forster. After this result, the Reds’ top four hopes were briefly taken out of their own hands.

36. Liverpool 2-2 West Ham (Premier League, 11 December)

The Reds needed to get back on track after a calamitous defeat at Bournemouth and they made the perfect start, Adam Lallana netting inside five minutes. However, a Loris Karius blunder allowed Dimitri Payet to equalise with a free kick and shocking Liverpool defending allowed Michail Antonio to give the visitors a surprise lead. Divock Origi levelled the game just after half-time but Liverpool could not find a winning goal and their title challenge was beginning to stall.

37. Liverpool 2-2 Bournemouth (Premier League, 5 April)

Victory in the Merseyside derby paved the way for what seemed a very manageable run-in to the season, but a slack pass by Georgino Wijnaldum gifted Benik Afobe with an early goal for Bournemouth. Philippe Coutinho levelled shortly before half-time and Divock Origi’s 59th-minute goal looked like setting Liverpool on their way. However, more poor defending allowed Joshua King to equalise with only three minutes left. Not for the first time in 2016/17, the Cherries had stunned Liverpool.

38. Liverpool 0-0 Plymouth (FA Cup, 8 January)

Jurgen Klopp named the youngest starting XI in Liverpool’s history and it was a team selection that backfired, with League Two Plymouth keeping the Reds at bay for the full 90 minutes. Liverpool predictably dominated throughout the match, but just did not have the guile or creativity to infiltrate a massed defence. For the second year in a row, Liverpool were held to a draw by a club three divisions below them.

39. Southampton 1-0 Liverpool (EFL Cup, 11 January)

Three days after the disastrous draw against Plymouth, the Reds were in EFL Cup action away to Southampton for the first leg of a tricky semi-final. Liverpool had won 6-1 at St Mary’s in this competition last season, but a repeat never looked likely and they fell behind midway through the first half when Nathan Redmond struck. Loris Karius was in goal after losing his place in league games and only for his heroics, the Reds would have been demolished on a night when they were miles off the pace.

40. Burnley 2-0 Liverpool (Premier League, 20 August)

Liverpool had been due to play at home on week two of the season, but with Anfield’s redevelopment not fully complete, the fixture was reversed and the Reds were off to Turf Moor. Newly-promoted Burnley found the net inside two minutes through Sam Vokes to stun the visitors and Andre Gray doubled the lead shortly before half-time. Liverpool had 81% possession on the day but rarely troubled Tom Heaton in the Burnley goal. It was the type of defeat which would become eerily familiar later in the season.

41. Bournemouth 4-3 Liverpool (Premier League, 4 December)

Liverpool were unbeaten in three and a half months when they travelled to Dean Court in early December and that run looked set to continue when quick-fire goals from Sadio Mane and Philippe Coutinho gave them a 2-0 lead. Callum Wilson netted a penalty after half-time but Emre Can soon restored the two-goal gap. Ryan Fraser and Steve Cook scored in two minutes as the game entered the final quarter-hour and, in added time, a Loris Karius blunder allowed Nathan Ake to complete an astonishing comeback for Bournemouth.

42. Liverpool 1-2 Crystal Palace (Premier League, 23 April)

At the same time that the Reds’ top four-chasing rivals Arsenal and Man City faced off in the FA Cup semi-finals, they had a chance to heap pressure on both clubs when Crystal Palace came to Anfield. Philippe Coutinho’s free kick midway through the first half quelled the home fans’ nerves, but ex-Liverpool striker Christian Benteke equalised on the verge of half-time and the Belgian would score the winner with 15 minutes left when Liverpool again proved incapable of defending a corner. The Reds’ top four hopes looked in serious jeopardy after a third consecutive home defeat to the Eagles.

43. Liverpool 0-1 Southampton (EFL Cup, 25 January)

Liverpool needed to overturn a 1-0 first leg deficit at Anfield against a Southampton side which had proven thorny opposition in recent times. The Saints looked the more likely to score in a forgettable first half before Liverpool dominated in the second 45 minutes. They couldn’t find a route to goal, though, and a swift Southampton counterattack in stoppage time ended with Shane Long consigning Jurgen Klopp’s men to the same scoreline as in the first leg.

44. Liverpool 1-2 Wolves (FA Cup, 28 January)

What appeared a straightforward fixture only days beforehand now came with a health warning for Liverpool, who had lost twice in a week at Anfield before Wolves came to town. The Championship side scored after just 52 seconds, Richard Stearman with an easy header from a diagonal free kick and Andreas Weimann scored a breakaway goal near half-time to heap pressure on the Reds. Divock Origi pulled one back in the closing minutes but it wasn’t enough to stave off a third home defeat in eight days in three different competitions for Liverpool.

45. Liverpool 2-3 Swansea (Premier League, 21 January)

Liverpool were unbeaten at Anfield in 361 days when relegation-threatened Swansea paid a visit in January, but the Reds were thwarted in a dour first half and then imploded after half-time. Fernando Llorente hit two goals of ridiculous simplicity just after the break, although Liverpool would draw level through a Roberto Firmino double. Would that be the spark for them to plunder a fortunate victory? No, for it was Swansea who took advantage of more hideous defending as Gylfi Sigurdsson scored the club’s first-ever winning goal at Anfield.

46. Hull 2-0 Liverpool (Premier League, 4 February)

Liverpool were winless in four league games and had endured a torrid January when they travelled to the KCOM Stadium, where they had lost on their two previous visits. Another wretched trip to Hull was set in motion on the stroke of half-time when a Simon Mignolet error gifted Alfred N’Diaye with the opening goal for the Tigers, who sealed the points late on through a simple Oumar Niasse finish. Hell in Hull again for the ailing Merseysiders.

47. Leicester 3-1 Liverpool (Premier League, 27 February)

Leicester were deep in a relegation battle as they played their first game since sacking Claudio Ranieri, with Craig Shakespeare taking interim charge. The Foxes found their rhythm all of a sudden and a woeful Liverpool proved accommodating opposition. Jamie Vardy opened the scoring on 27 minutes and Danny Drinkwater added a superb second, with Vardy doubling his tally on the hour mark. Philippe Coutinho’s 67th-minute goal barely raised on a cheer as Liverpool turned in their worst performance of the season.

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