Liverpool are European champions.
Liverpool have won their sixth European Cup. Jurgen Klopp’s side beat Tottenham Hotspur 2-0 in Madrid in the Champions League final.
Mohamed Salah’s penalty, awarded in the opening minute after the referee adjudged that Moussa Sissoko handled the ball in the box, gave Liverpool the lead in a final that was low on quality.
Divock Origi, a second-half substitute, settled the game three minutes from full-time with a powerful strike beyond Hugo Lloris.
Klopp has won his first trophy as Liverpool manager and the team are champions of Europe again. Here is how we rated the players:
Hugo Lloris – 6
The Tottenham captain made an embarrassing error in the World Cup final last July but made no such mistakes on Saturday night. He could do little about Salah’s powerful penalty, or Origi’s strike, and made some comfortable saves on the few occasions he was tested.
Kieran Trippier – 5
Trippier is arguably the weak link in the Spurs team. Several teams have targetted him in the competition this season, and Liverpool were no different. Straight from the kick-off, the ball was hit in Trippier’s direction, and Mane was constantly looking to attack the England full-back. His final ball was often poor.
Toby Alderweireld – 5
The Belgian defender was rarely tested defensively but was part of the mix-up that led to Liverpool’s second goal.
Jan Vertonghen – 5
Like his central defensive partner, Vertonghen made light work of a half-fit Firmino, but didn’t cover himself in glory for the second, decisive goal.
Danny Rose – 6
Rose was comfortable in possession, solid defensively and even managed two nutmegs.
Harry Winks – 6
The midfielder underwent groin surgery on April 29 but was passed fit to start the final tonight. Winks was comfortable collecting the ball under pressure, kept it neat in possession and tried to get his team playing.
Moussa Sissoko – 5
Sissoko gave away the penalty that led to Liverpool taking the lead after the ball struck his arm in the opening minute. The French midfielder could probably count himself unfortunate, but it would prove to be his only impact on the game.
Christian Eriksen – 5
A quiet match by his own standards, Eriksen was often on the edge of the game and found space and opportunities to break the deadlock hard to come by.
Heung-min Son – 6
It was a frustrating game for the Korean, who had some nice touches and roamed around the pitch looking for space. He was Tottenham’s main threat late in the game when he drifted into central positions and had a few attempts at Liverpool’s goal.
Dele Alli – 5
On the edge of the game throughout.
Harry Kane – 4
The big call on the night, the England captain last played on April 9, when he injured his ankle against Manchester City in the Champions League quarter-final first leg. Kane was given the nod ahead of Lucas Moura, the hero of the Amsterdam who scored a hat-trick in the semi-final second leg against Ajax.
And on the evidence of the game, the decision backfired. Kane showed one or two nice touches but did not look match fit. The England captain appeared to lose every aerial duel with Van Dijk and was something of a lumbering presence on the pitch. No Tottenham player had fewer touches in the opening period (11).
Lucas Moura – 5
He should have started the game, as Kane looked no-where near match fit, but didn’t have much of an impact when he came on as a second-half substitute.
Eric Dier & Fernando Llorente – N/A
Not on long enough to rate.
Alisson Becker – 7.5
In the Champions League final last year, Liverpool were let down by their goalkeeper. There was no chance of that happening on Saturday night, as Alisson made several vital saves.
Trent Alexander-Arnold – 7
The youngest player in Champions League history to start back-to-back finals, Alexander-Arnold hit some wonderful deliveries into the Tottenham penalty area and made Lloris sweat with a brilliant strike on goal in the first half. His crosses were always a threat.
Virgil van Dijk – 7.5
A comfortable first half for the defender, who won almost every aerial duel against Kane. Van Dijk was effective in possession too, playing a part in Liverpool’s direct tactics – starting moves and relieving the pressure with some telling passes, switches of play and long balls. His late tackle on Son proved vital as it looked like the Tottenham forward was clear through on goal.
Joel Matip – 7
A composed performance from the defender, who made relatively light work of Kane, winning several aerial challenges. He outmuscled the centre-forward on a few occasions too and constructive in possession. An understated, but accomplished display.
Andrew Robertson – 7
Robertson was defensively solid, dangerous going forward and a constant outlet on the left.
Fabinho – 6
He was probably the best of Liverpool’s midfield but was a little loose with his passing.
Jordan Henderson – 6
The disjointed nature of the game suited Henderson, who work extremely hard and put pressure on Spurs throughout.
Georginio Wijnaldum – 5
He worked hard but had very little influence with the ball. Wjnaldum had just 10 touches of the ball in the first half and his performance arguably summed up the midfield display from both sides – a lot of running, a lot of effort, but not a lot of constructive play when in possession.
Sadio Mane – 7
A constant danger to Tottenham’s backline, Mane was always willing to run into space behind Trippier and helped stretch the play with his direct running.
Roberto Firmino – 5
Firmino had no effect on the game and looked like a player short of match sharpness after a spell out injured.
Mohamed Salah – 7
The Egyptian smashed home his penalty kick with his first touch of the game. He was quiet after that, but so was the game itself.
Divock Origi – 7
An unlikely hero again, Origi ended the game with an excellent strike beyond Lloris in the dying minutes of the final.
James Milner – 6
A second-half substitute, Milner almost won the game with a low left-footed strike that almost crept in the bottom corner.
Joe Gomez – N/A
Not on long enough to rate.