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Liverpool's Daniel Sturridge calls Chelsea goal one of the best in my career

Liverpool's Daniel Sturridge calls Chelsea goal one of the best in my career

ESPN

A fantastic late strike from Daniel Sturridge gave Liverpool a point on an evening when two clubs demonstrated their serious title credentials in the 1-1 Premier League draw at Chelsea on Saturday.

Positives

Even without the equaliser, this would have been a decent performance from the Reds, and they had more of the game than many visitors to Stamford Bridge will have.

Negatives

Finishing has once again let Liverpool down. The front three were the cornerstone of their splendid efforts last season but they will need to start bringing their A game soon or the team will be punished.

Manager rating out of 10

7 -- Summer signings have helped strengthen the bench and given Jurgen Klopp far more room for manoeuver. A precious point was earned as a result of that, one that wouldn't have come last season.

Player ratings: (1-10; 10=best. Players introduced after 70 minutes get no rating)

GK Alisson, 7 -- He made good saves one on one, possibly could have done better with the goal. Continues to use the ball well and has not taken any risks since his faux pas at Leicester. Gives the defence a lot more assurance.

DF Trent Alexander-Arnold, 6 -- Good attacking performance, but Chelsea exploited the space he leaves behind him several times and on another day it might cost Liverpool more than the one goal they conceded.

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DF Joe Gomez, 8 -- Clearly the obvious choice to partner Virgil van Dijk now, he defended well and was unnerved in possession. Still has the odd lapse when his partner rescued him, but the youngster returned the favour on a couple of occasions.

DF Virgil van Dijk, 9 -- The Dutchman needs to be wrapped in cotton wool, as a disciplined defence rests primarily on his shoulders. Took a couple of knocks designed to test his sore ribs but gritted his teeth and carried on superbly.

DF Andrew Robertson, 7 -- Good on the whole, but some of his crossing left something to be desired despite one perfect ball to Xherdan Shaqiri who squandered the gilt-edged chance.

MF Jordan Henderson, 6 -- Kept the team moving but lacked spark and creativity. It was not much of a surprise when Klopp looked to the bench for a fresh approach.

MF James Milner, 7 -- Popping up in different positions, he was at the heart of a midfield that faced one of the best in the country and wasn't disgraced. Sank deeper second half to allow Robertson to charge forward, he was still supporting the forwards whenever possible. Never seems to get tired.

MF Georginio Wijnaldum, 7 -- Lively in the first half, he reverted back to his usual invisible away self when needed most in the second half. Never easy to gauge his overall contribution but certainly kept working hard.

FW Sadio Mane, 6 -- A big letdown at times, he at least refused to hide and brought a good save out of Kepa Arrizabalaga. Seemed half asleep at times, but he wasn't the only forward to let the visitors down.

FW Mohamed Salah, 5 -- Just wasn't anywhere near his best all afternoon. Got away once but an improvised right-foot prod was stopped on the line. But for last season's heroics, he might have been replaced earlier.

FW Roberto Firmino, 6 -- The Brazilian makes this team tick, but he found it hard going against well-drilled, talented opposition. Still had a header cleared off the line, but he can be a lot better than this.

Substitutes

FW Xherdan Shaqiri, 6 -- The obvious replacement for Salah, he immediately made an impact but put an easy chance wide. Persistence helped push the home side back.

MF Naby Keita, NR -- Brought on for fresh legs and more guile, he had one or two moments but ran into trouble and squandered a half chance with a terrible shot.

FW Daniel Sturridge, NR -- Saved the game with a remarkable piece of skill. Ability has never been the issue with Sturridge, only physical strength, but as an impact substitute he may have found his true vocation for the rest of his career.

Manchester United are not in the process of lining up Zinedine Zidane as their next manager despite mounting pressure on current boss Jose Mourinho, sources have told ESPN FC.

United were beaten 3-1 by West Ham on Saturday to extend their winless run to three and prompt renewed speculation former Real Madrid coach Zidane, who was in London this week, is in the frame to take over at Old Trafford.

However, sources close to the club told ESPN FC dismissed talk of an approach to Zidane, who is available after leaving the Bernabeu in the summer, as "nonsense."

Mourinho's position is under the spotlight after a draw with Wolves and the Carabao Cup exit to Championship side Derby County was followed up with a dire defeat at the London Stadium. 

The result leaves United nine points behind Premier League leaders Liverpool and Manchester City after just seven games.

It is also their worst start to a league campaign since David Moyes was in charge in 2013-14.

Executive vice chairman Ed Woodward appeared to back Mourinho on Tuesday by insisting the club was working hard to win trophies under the the Portuguese coach's stewardship.

Mourinho has faced a week of controversy, first stripping Paul Pogba of the vice-captaincy then being captured in a tense exchange with the midfielder at Carrington.

United are next in action against Valencia in the Champions League on Tuesday night before a Premier League clash with Newcastle.

Liverpool's Daniel Sturridge said his spectacular goal in a 1-1 draw against Chelsea on Saturday was probably one of the best of his career.

Sturridge salvaged Liverpool's unbeaten start to the Premier League with a long-range effort beyond the reach of Kepa Arrizabalaga, the world's most expensive goalkeeper, in the 89th minute.

The striker was introduced as a substitute four minutes from time at Stamford Bridge, with his equaliser cancelling Eden Hazard's first-half opener.

"It was a good goal, the boys worked tirelessly all game," Sturridge told BT Sport postmatch. "We created a lot of chances in the first half and we were unlucky not to score in the first half. But it was a nice goal at the end for myself.

"I'd like to think [I've scored better goals], but probably not. This one was a nice goal. As I said, it was just about getting the result.

"It's a team game and I just give my best [in] any minutes I get. It's just important to keep pushing forward, having a positive outlook on everything going on and it's been good far."

Sturridge is now Liverpool's joint-top goalscorer for the season, alongside Sadio Mane, with four goals in seven appearances.

Jurgen Klopp believes the 29-year-old is in the best physical shape during his career at Anfield.

"Three days ago he had a similar situation and hit the crossbar," Klopp said at his postmatch news conference. "He reminded nobody [of his talent] then, obviously.

"He's fantastic football player, he had a full preseason and he's in the best shape since I've known him. It's as easy as that.

"It's really cool, I'm really happy for him. He works hard, he's just a good lad. When he came in the dressing room after 20 minutes or so, it was pretty loud. The boys were all happy for him. He really is in a good moment."

The draw at Chelsea extended Liverpool's unbeaten start to the season to seven matches, although Manchester City's 2-0 victory over Brighton and Hove Albion sees them move to the top of the table on goal difference.

Klopp feels his side should have walked away from London with three points instead of one, having had numerous clear-cut chances through the match.

"We deserved to win," he continued. "It's all good with the result. Both teams deserve a point, we only had more chances, like we did on Wednesday.

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"But Chelsea is a super team and it is quite difficult to play them, but I thought we did it in a really impressive way, to be honest.

"Today I saw a really good performance from my side in a difficult game after we'd lost on Wednesday against them.

"We gave them one proper chance, they used it and we didn't use ours. That's how life is. But as long as we create chances like we did tonight, we will win football games."

Klopp also attempted to downplay Mohamed Salah's withdrawal after 66 minutes, with Xherdan Shaqiri replacing the Egypt international, who squandered a number of good opportunities during his return to Chelsea.

"It was tactical, he was not injured," he said. "It was not Mo's best game of his career, 100 percent.

"But coming in a game like this, constantly in situations like he comes in, that makes a world-class player. You fail, you miss, whatever, that happens. No problem with that.

"But I want him so that he wants to be decisive, to score in these situations. You could see the first ball he missed a bit it was not in the right position, and the next ball he passed! Why? He could have shot.

"It's like riding a bike. It's not that you wake up in the morning and you can't finish and you can't ride a bike any more. That's how it is. You need to work for these moments when it's clicking. That's the period he's in, no problem with that."

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