Fabinho gives Liverpool a new dimension as Cristiano Ronaldo stat sums up his influence
Who could have predicted that Fabinho would become a goal machine at the start of 2022?
Not many, you think.
The Brazilian scored towards the end of the first half in the narrow 1-0 win over Burnley at Turf Moor in a tightly contested game.
It was Fabinho’s third league goal in the last four games, following strikes against Brentford and Crystal Palace. In all competitions, he has scored five goals since the start of the year. He is now down to six for the season in total.
In 2022, Fabinho has five goals more than Cristiano Ronaldo’s zero.
It was remarkable form for a player who, prior to this season, had scored just three goals for Liverpool since leaving Monaco in the summer of 2018.
Moreover, several of Fabinho’s goals came from being in the right place at the right time inside the penalty area from set pieces. Goals against Leeds, Brentford, Shrewsbury in the FA Cup and Burnley came from locking second balls inside the box and clearing them away.
When it comes to dead balls, Fabinho has his nose for a goal.
The game against Burnley turned out to be more difficult than expected. On a blustery afternoon at Turf Moor, rain and wind were the backdrop for one of Liverpool’s lackluster performances of the season.
On several occasions, Burnley threatened Alisson’s goal, getting behind Liverpool’s remarkably high line.
Fabinho’s winner came at a time in the match when Liverpool were somewhat under pressure, with the home side shaking their lines by unveiling Alisson.
Trent Alexander-Arnold won his battle with a moving corner flag, whipped into his cross towards Sadio Mané, who delicately guided the ball through the center of Burnley’s goal and Fabinho was there to smash the ball home.
The goal took the sting out of Burnley’s play as half-time drew to a close. After the restart, Burnley’s threat was largely negated with Fabinho and substitute Thiago Alcântara taking control of the game in midfield.
It was by no means a great performance from Liverpool, but it cemented second place in the table and at the same time demonstrated how crucial Fabinho is to the team.
Fabinho completed 83% of his passes throughout the game and masked the midfield to eliminate any potential danger. Although he was caught out of position a few times, the Brazilian was still where he needed to be.
This season represents Fabinho’s best return since his last season with Monaco, when he finished the 2017/18 campaign with seven goals and four assists.
With the way Fabinho has started 2022 he could just as easily match that tally and then his aim could be to equal his career best of nine Ligue 1 goals, which came in 2016/17 when a very talented won. the French title and also reached the semi-final of the Champions League.
Given his recent record in front of goal, you wouldn’t bet against Fabinho adding a few more before the end of the season.
Liverpool have a new fox in the box.