Liverpool booked their place in the Champions League final for the second season in a row and after Tuesday evening’s stunning 4-0 victory over Barcelona; they will fear no one come the 1st of June.
With both Mohamed Salah (£4.70) and Roberto Firmino (£1.30) out, it always looked a difficult task overturning the 3-0 deficit, but this is a Liverpool side that simply will not back down. The atmosphere in Anfield was phenomenal and the entire Liverpool squad is brimming with confidence and so the Red’s proved too hot to handle for a Barcelona side, which was brushed aside with ease.
Divock Origi (£0.71) was the hero for Liverpool at the weekend against Newcastle and the Belgian once again filled the void left by Salah with a crucial brace. Origi has been a bit-part player this season, but his recent form will have no doubt shown his manager that he still has plenty to offer this Liverpool side. He also seems to have plenty left in the tank with regards to the Football Index, with the Belgian securing the best overall player on the night. It’s been a great week on the market for Origi and his performance yesterday ensured a 29% increase in value on the night.
Georginio Wijnaldum (£0.52) is another player who had a positive night on the Index. The Dutchman has become an integral part of this Liverpool side and his quick-fire double brought the score to 3-3 on aggregate. At this point, Liverpool could smell blood and having fired a brace, Wijnaldum also won the best performing midfielder.
With the game balanced at 3-3, Origi continued his fine form with the vital winner in the 79th minute, but it was the man who set up the goal, who really deserves the praise. Trent Alexander-Arnold (£2.44) showed extraordinary quick-thinking during what appeared to be a routine corner. As the 20 year old was swapping to allow Xherdan Shaqiri (£0.56) to take the corner kick, he noticed Origi left unattended by the entire Barcelona backline. With Barcelona’s defenders under the impression that Trent was making way for Shaqiri, they were left red-faced as the Englishman quickly back tracked and whipped in a low cross to Origi who smashed home the winner. Origi himself couldn’t quite believe the space he had in the 6 yard box and the goal capped off another stunning European night for Liverpool.
A quick mention also has to be made for Mohamed Salah. Despite the fact that he wasn’t even playing, the Egyptian still surged up in value by over 20p. With Liverpool’s place in the final now secured, traders are clearly backing Salah to deliver the goods. Considering Salah missed much of last year’s final due to his dislocated shoulder, the British press will surely have a field day with this particular story!
The result, left Barcelona ruing another big defeat in Europe, but it also affected several players in price. Leo Messi (£4.93) may have topped the Media Rankings yet again, but he had to succumb to a 22p drop. Despite this, traders can at least rest assured that Messi is currently delivering Media dividends on a very consistent basis. With four wins since the start of May, he’s been brilliant when it comes to the Media and with the top 5 being awarded dividends over summer, Messi will surely remain a key player in the Media.
Over in the squad and both Luis Suarez (£0.75) and Jordi Alba (£0.64) both fell by 11p and 7p respectively. Suarez has only managed one goal in the Champions League this season and at the age of 32, it remains to be seen whether Barcelona will stick with the Uruguayan this summer. Meanwhile, Alba is an intriguing prospect. Having chipped in with a very impressive 17 assists this season, the Spaniard remains an integral part of the Catalan club. Alba’s performances have resulted in an impressive performance yield of 22.92% this season and he has averaged a PB score of 111 from 46 matches this season – not bad for a player valued at 64p!
With Liverpool’s place in the Champions League final now confirmed, the Reds will be looking to go one better than last year and on the evidence of Tuesday night’s performance, you wouldn’t put it past them!