1. MATEO KOVAČIĆ (8.9)
Kovačić revealed after the game that he’s still not quite fully fit after his nearly two-month layoff for injury and isolation, but he certainly had me fooled. Recency bias aside, this was surely one of his best games yet, and that’s no mean feat considering that he was voted Chelsea Player of the Year in 2019-20.
In fact, I’d argue that crane-kicking Kova has been steadily getting better and better since joining Chelsea in 2018. At 27, going on 28, he’s right in his prime, and hopefully we can keep utilizing him this perfectly in our forever quest for trophies.
2. N’GOLO KANTÉ (8.3)
If there was one thing better than Kovačić in this game, it was Kovačić and Kanté together. I shall call them K2, like the world’s most awesome mountain peak.
Since Aug 2019, CFC have started with a back three 75 times. 14 matches under Lampard and 61 under Tuchel.— Grant de Smidt (@grantdesmidt) January 2, 2022
Only nine times has the CM pair been Kanté & Kovacic. I'm desperate to see that duo more often after their masterclass today.
3. ÉDOUARD MENDY (8.0)
Merely hours after the final whistle, Mendy was already on his flight to join Senegal at the Africa Cup of Nations (alongside frenemy Sadio Mané). For the first time in a year and a half, our goalkeeping position could be a source of worry. Kepa’s been fine in limited action, but he’s not been the main man since Mendy’s signing.
Senegal are one of the favorites for the trophy, which could mean over a month without Mendy. Here we go!
vs. LIVERPOOL (PL, H, D 2-2)
EXCEPTIONAL (9.0+): —
EXCELLENT (8.0-8.9): Kovačić (8.9), Kanté (8.3), Mendy (8.0)
GOOD (7.0-7.9): Pulisic (7.5), Silva (7.3), Rüdiger (7.2), Azpilicueta (7.0)
AVERAGE (6.0-6.9): Mount (6.5), Havertz (6.1), Alonso (6.0), Chalobah (6.0)
POOR (5.0-5.9): Jorginho (5.9, sub), Hudson-Odoi (5.8, sub)
BAD (4.0-4.9): —
TERRIBLE (3.0-3.9): —