Jurgen Klopp may have mixed feelings about the World Cup 2022 so far.
Of course, the Liverpool manager will be downheartened that his native Germany crashed out of the group stage for a second straight tournament.
But six of his Reds players’ respective nations are into the last 16 in Qatar. Only Darwin Nunez’s Uruguay have crashed out at the group stage. While it means it’ll be less time for Klopp to work with six of his troops, he’ll still want at least one to go on to achieve glory.
And as we turn our head to the knockout stage,, we’ve taken a look at the performances of the Liverpool players in the World Cup so far and dished out our ratings.
Alisson Becker - Brazil - 7
Clean sheets have been too few for Alisson at Liverpool this season. However, the goalkeeper’s record so far at the World Cup is unblemished. Alisson was barely troubled in the 2-0 win against Serbia along with the 1-0 victory over Switzerland. He was then given a rest for the final Group G game - a 1-0 loss against Cameroon.
Bigger tests are to come for Alisson as Brazil now prepare to face South Korea.
Fabinho - Brazil - 6
Such is the depth of Brazil’s squad, Fabinho was unused against Serbia and Switzerland. He started against Cameroon, though, and in an underwhelming performance, was probably one of the better players as he mopped up play competently. However, the midfielder is likely to be back on the bench against South Korea.
Jordan Henderson - England - 7
The Liverpool captain is quietly going about his business. After not being used in the 6-2 thrashing of Iran, Henderson displayed all of his nous and experience to settle things down in the 1-1 draw against the USA. That was enough to keep his spot in the 3-0 win over Wales - in which he put in a huge shift. Will be in Gareth Southgate’s thinking for the last-16 clash against Senegal on Sunday.
Trent Alexander-Arnold - England - 6
Much to many Kopites’ disagreement, Alexander-Arnold is third-choice right-back. Kieran Trippier was favoured against Iran and the USA before Kyle Walker started against Wales. However, Alexander-Arnold came on off the bench in the 57th minute and helped augment the victory. However, he’s set to again be on the bench against Senegal.
Ibrahima Konate - France - 9
Only a couple of months ago, the centre-back may have been resigned to feeling he wouldn’t make France’s squad due to his injury problems.
However, Konate bounced back to full fitness and has proved his worth for the current holders. Konate shone in the 4-1 defeat of Australia and it was harsh that he lost his place in the 2-1 win against Denmark. The 23-year-old came off the bench before again starting against Tunisia.
In the shock 1-0 loss, Konate was a rare shining light and set a record for the most tackles made for a defender at the World Cup. Now surely the ex-RB Leipzig man has a strong chance of featuring against Poland on Sunday.
Virgil van Dijk - Holland - 8
The colossus centre-back’s first World Cup is going to plan so far, with Holland preparing to face the USA in the last 16. Van Dijk perhaps should have scored a header in the 2-0 defeat of Senegal, while he was excellent in the 1-1 draw against Ecuador. Then breezed through the 2-0 victory over Qatar. Leading by example as captain so far.
Darwin Nunez - Uruguay - 6
The striker had mixed games in the 0-0 draw against South Korea and 2-0 loss to Portugal. Nunez, who cost Liverpool £64 million from Benfica last summer, showed his usual industry and resolve but lacked cutting edge and composure in the final third at times.
It was the same in the early stages against Ghana as he went down easily in a bid to win a penalty before being unable to get the ball out of his feet when played in. Nunez then riled the opposition when stamping on the 12-yard spot after Ghana were awarded a penalty - which was missed by Andre Ayew.
Finally, he made an impact when he played his part in both of Giorgian de Arrascaeta’s goals and perhaps should have had a penalty when brought down in the second half. Nunez was subbed after that and was helpless at Uruguay chased a third goal to go through on goal difference in Group H - which they couldn’t find.