Liverpool vs Porto: player ratings, heroes and villains from 2-0 Champions League victory

Thiago Alcantara and Mo Salah were on target in the second half at Anfield.

Liverpool’s perfect record in this season’s Champions League continued with a 2-0 victory over Porto at Anfield.

The Reds rode their luck at times in the first half after Jurgen Klopp made four changes with his side’s place in the last 16 already secured.

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The home side ensured the Portuguese visitors were punished when they took the lead in the 52nd minute through a Thiago Alcantara wonder strike.

Then Mo Salah secured the three points with a left-footed finish on 70 minutes.

The heroes

- Thiago: amid talk of a potential Barcelona return, the midfielder flexed his muscle with his sumptuous strike. From the moment the ball left his boot, it was always destined for the back of the net. It wasn’t just Thiago’s strike that made him man of the match, though. He was immense from the first whistle, displaying class and composure in the engine room.

- Tyler Morton: the 19-year-old barely put a foot wrong on his Champions League debut. He was composed on the ball throughout, showing maturity and his long ball started the move for Salah’s goal.

- Mo Salah: it wouldn’t have been Liverpool win without the best player in the world on the scoresheet, would it? By his own standards, Salah was disappointing for the most part. However, he stepped up when it mattered when he drilled home to ensure the Reds claimed all three points. He’s now on 17 goals for the season.

Mo Salah, right, celebrates scoring Liverpool’s second goal against Porto with Jordan Henderson. Picture: Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

The villains

- Otavio: the attacking midfielder missed an absolute sitter in the 12th minute. After Luis Diaz broke at pace, he squared for Otavio, who virtually had an open goal. However, he got his finish all wrong and saw his effort run wide.

- Mehdi Taremi: the Porto forward left his teammates incensed in the 42nd minute. He was set through and with the goal at his mercy, he instead opted to pull the ball back, with his cross cleared. It was a golden opportunity and he has to be selfish.

- Takumi Minamino: a tad harsh on the Japan international? Perhaps. He did have a goal chalked off after all for offside. But in a rare start, Minamino didn’t make as big of an impact as many would have hoped. There was one poor pass to Salah, in particular, in the first half that caused a promising move to break down. With the African Cup of Nations around the corner, some will question if he’s good enough to cover the absent Salah and Sadio Mane.

Player ratings

Liverpool (4-3-3): Alisson 7, Williams 7, Matip 7, Konate 6, Tsimikas 7 (Robertson 63; 7), Morton 7, Thiago 9 (Henderson 63; 7), Oxlade-Chamberlain 7 (Milner 82), Mane 6 (Origi 72; 6), Salah 7 (Fabinho 71; 6), Minamino 6.

Porto (4-4-2): Costa 4, Mario 5, Mbemba 4, Pepe 6 (Cardoso 24; 4), Zaidu 5, Uribe 5 (Grujic 77), Oliveira 5 (Vitinha 64; 5), Otavio 4, Diaz 7, Taremi 4 (Conceicao 64; 5), Evanilson 5 (Martinez 77).

What’s Liverpool’s next fixture?

The Reds turn their attention back to the Premier League on Saturday.

Klopp’s men welcome Southampton to Anfield (15.00 GMT).