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Thread: My Match Report Thread - Season 2013 - 14

  1. #1 My Match Report Thread - Season 2013 - 14 
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    Preston 0-4 Liverpool

    Liverpool started their pre-season with a trip to Preston to contest the Shankly Shield in commemoration of the great man who served both clubs and who was born 100 years ago this year.

    Debutant Apas scored on his debut for Liverpool as the Reds eased to a comfortable 4-0 win at Deepdale. Philippe Coutinho started the scoring after converting a penalty before Jordan Ibe scored his first senior goal for the Reds, Raheem Sterling netted the other Liverpool goal.
    The Match

    Brendan Rodgers tried to give as many players some match practice in Liverpool’s first pre-season match for the new season. New signings Luis Alberto, Simon Mignolet , Kolo Toure and Iago Aspas all featured for the Reds. Daniel Agger was installed as captain for the day with Steven Gerrard not featuring and with Jamie Carragher’s retirement from football.

    Daniel Agger was the first player to test the Preston keeper Rudd, with a stinging 30 yard effort Rudd could only parry, before the Preston defence quickly cleared to clear the danger.

    Liverpool dominated possession in the early stages and their constant pressure paid dividends when Coutinho robbed Preston’s John Welsh of possession on the edge of his own area before pulling the Brazilian to the ground resulting in a penalty. Coutinho casually converted the spot-kick into the corner sending Rudd the wrong way in the process.

    A period of possession football from Liverpool came after the goal with neither keeper having much to do until Liverpool stepped up the tempo with Flanagan bursting into the Preston half after intercepting a Preston pass before sending Borini clear, but the Italian lacked composure and slipped his effort wide of the post with only Rudd to beat.

    A minute later young Jordan Ibe proved to be more ruthless when he skipped inside from the left flank before rifling an unstoppable low effort past Rudd at his near post. The goal capped a fine first half performance from the youngster as he tormented the Preston right-back.

    The second half brought wholesale changes to both sides, with Aspas and Alberto pulling on the Red shirt for the first time.

    Sterling replaced Ibe on the left flank to mark his comeback after a long-term injury. The winger looked keen to impress as he burst down the left flank before forcing his way into the Preston box before curling a stike towards the far corner, but replacement Preston keeper Stuckmann managed to divert the ball away to safety.

    Sterling’s enthusiasm was rewarded with 25 minutes remaining when a rapid exchange of passes on the half-way line sliced open the Preston defence and sent Sterling one-on-one with the keeper. Sterling showed great composure to round Stuckmann before sliding the ball into the empty net.

    A fine Liverpool performance was capped by debutant Aspas curling a 25 yard effort past Stuckmann in a pleasing day for Brendan Rodgers.

    Summary

    Liverpool impressed against Preston in their first pre-season match at Deepdale. I liked the way the players showed hunger to press the opposition and look for the ball. OK Preston are not the greatest of teams but it was a decent workout and was a good fixture for debutants Alberto, Mignolet, Toure and Aspas to settle into the Liverpool team. The players that impressed for me were Jordan Ibe who looked a threat down the left flank and scored a great goal which will do his confidence no harm. Coutinho just looks better with every game and pulled the strings against inferior opposition, took his penalty clinically. Stewart Downing looked lively when he came on for the second half and Raheem Sterling was very impressive as he looked to go past the Preston full-back at every opportunity, a great goal by Sterling too as he showed great confidence in his cool finish. Debutant Aspas showed some clever touches and looks a tricky player as he created Sterling’s goal before scoring a fine goal himself. I think the best moment of the day for me was the introduction of Martin Kelly with 10 minutes to go as he made his comeback from long-term injury, he has been so unlucky with injuries in recent years and his return is like a new signing for Liverpool. Overall it was a good workout for Brendan Rodgers’ side and I’m sure the manager will be happy with his team’s performance.
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    Indonesia X1 0-2 Liverpool Match Report

    Coutinho and Raheem Sterling were the scorers in a good testing workout against an Indonesian eleven. Coutinho scored early in the match before Sterling finished off the resilient Indonesian side late on before an excited Indonesian support in Jakarta who enjoyed the visit from their heroes.
    The Match

    Liverpool must have felt like that they were back home at Anfield with the unbelievable support behind them in Jakarta. Steven Gerrard made his comeback from injury and was warmly welcomed by the tremendous support. Liverpool inspired by the vocal and passionate support rewarded them with an early goal when Brazilian Coutinho found the net after a lucky ricocheted allowed him into the box before sliding the ball under Meiga.

    The match provided Liverpool with a more difficult test than the previous week against Preston as they had to work harder to maintain their lead in the extreme heat against an industrious Indonesian side.

    Liverpool came close to extending their lead when Downing met an Enrique cross with a side-foot volley, but Meiga did well to smother. Moments later Luis Alberto beat Meiga but not the woodwork.

    Liverpool continued to threaten the Indonesian goal as Aspas created space for himself before smashing a shot off the top of the crossbar.

    The hosts nearly equalised when Sergio Van Dijk’s audacious strike called Mignolet into action. The striker drilled a 30 yard effort which Mignolet did well to glance wide of his post.

    10 minutes into the second half almost brought a second Liverpool goal but as Aspas rounded Meiga the ball bobbled up and the striker fired high and wide. Coutinho was having another impressive display and he almost scored his and Lverpool’s second goal of the match when Aspas created a chance for the Brazilian, but for once Coutinho lacked composure as he scooped his effort over the crossbar.

    Rodgers made wholesale changes with 25 minutes to go as match fitness is so important at this stage of the season. Raheem Sterling was one of those introduced amd made an immediate impact when he skipped past an opponent before firing a 30 yard effort that soared just wide.

    Sterling became the second player to hit the crossbar when he powerfully hit the top of the crossbar after Borini had failed to make contact from Assaidi’s cross. Sterling was causing all sorts of problems for the Indonesian defence with his movement and next he smashed an effort into the side-netting after running behind the Indonesian defence.

    But the youngster wasn’t to be denied his goal after good work by Ibe found Assaidi with only Meiga to beat but the Morrocan unselfishly slipped the ball to Sterling who tucked the ball into the gaping net.

    The match proved a good test for Liverpool as they step up their pre-season and now move onto Australia where they will face Melbourne Victory on Wednesday.

    Summary

    A good test for Liverpool against an industrious Indonesian side in difficult conditions with the heat. Steven Gerrard making his comeback was very pleasing for Liverpool supporters, but he did look a little rusty as he began his pre-season which can only be expected. Mignolet was more tested and looked impressive in what he had to deal with a few good saves and commanding his penalty area at cross balls. Toure was solid at the back and made some good interceptions. Coutinho was once again very impressive and can pick out those defence splitting passes at will. Aspas is a good addition to the side and a tricky player that can conjure up chances on his own. Alberto showed some good work that showed his value to the team and was unlucky not to score. But like last weekend Raheem Sterling impressed when coming off the bench with his energy and attitude and directness to attack defenders with his pace, his goal capped a fine performance as he must be impressing Brendan Rodgers with his sharpness. Liverpool’s pre-season is gradually building momentum and the trip to Australia will be another good test in this busy pre-season for the Reds.
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    Melbourne Victory 0-2 Liverpool Match Report

    Liverpool continued their pre-season tour with another win as they beat Melbourne Victory 2-0 thanks to goals from captain Steven Gerrard and a late Aspas strike at the Melbourne Cricket Ground. The match was watched by an amazing 95,000 sell-out crowd.

    The Match

    The match started without much in the way of goal mouth action as Liverpool looked happy to concentrate on keeping possession in the early stages. Sterling had the first meaningful effort on goal but unfortunately his 25 yard effort sliced wide of target before Andrew Nabbout tested Brad Jones at the other end.

    Gerrard had a long range effort well saved by Nathan Coe after connecting on a pass from Sterling. But the Victory goalkeeper was helpless to prevent Gerrard scoring moments after the half-hour mark when the Liverpool captain slotted past the keeper after great work by Joe Allen to create the chance.

    The goal came at a good time for the Reds with the hosts enjoying their best spell of possession of the match. Youngsters Sterling and Ibe looked lively down the flanks and created Liverpool’s best chances, but too often Liverpool lacked numbers in the box to take advantage.

    Gerrard managed to get on the end of one of Sterling’s crosses but his effort rose over the crossbar just before half-time.

    Liverpool continued to look for goals in the second half and Skrtel almost made it 2-0 shortly after the re-start when he produced a looping header from a Gerrard corner which Coe managed to tip over the bar.

    The game became pedestrian with no keeper called into action until the hour mark when Borini executed a vicious volley which Coe did well to smother before Connor Pain produced a swerving left-foot drive that Jones managed to parry away.

    Borini became more involved in the second half and improvised to produce an overhead kick which bounced just wide of the post.

    Rodgers made wholesale changes with about 20 minutes remaining with most eyes on Suarez whose future is shrouded in mystery.
    Substitute Aspas put the icing on the cake with a second goal for Liverpool in stoppage time after trademark trickery from fellow substitute Luis Suarez.

    Liverpool will now travel to Thailand for the last match of their three-match summer tour against a Thailand X1.

    Summary

    Liverpool recorded another win and another clean sheet in Melbourne. Gerrard looked much better in a dominant first half capped by a brilliant goal. Jordan Ibe and Raheem Sterling showed great appetite and sharpness down the wings with Borini looking much better in the second half after a quiet first half. Liverpool should have won by more than 2 goals but it was another good match for Liverpool although the future regarding Suarez remains unclear even though he managed 20 minutes game time.
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  4. #4  
    2461 is offline Armchair supporter
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    Nice reports
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    Thailand 0-3 Liverpool Match Report

    Liverpool ended their pre-season tour with a trip to Thailand. The Reds won comfortably in front of another stadium full of Liverpool supporters. Liverpool won the match 3-0 through goals from Coutinho, Aspas and Steven Gerrard to the delight of the Thailand public. Luis Suarez featured once again as speculation over his future remains unclear.

    The Team

    Brendan Rodgers used as many players as possible in this match against Thailand as he prioritise match fitness with his players. New goalkeeper Mignolet started the match with other new signing Toure in defence in front of him alongside Enrique, Agger and Johnson. Rodgers selected a midfield of Lucas, Gerrard, Coutinho and Allen with other new signing Aspas and Borini providing an attacking threat.

    The Match

    Liverpool made light of the searing heat and humidity as they grabbed the initiative from the start. Coutinho caught the eye in the early stages with stunning close control and tricks that impressed the audience.

    Aspas almost scored after one of Coutinho’s trademark runs, but the striker’s effort was deflected over. Then Coutinho sent an acrobatic volley just wide after being picked out by Johnson as the chances kept coming.

    Then Borini saw an effort saved before the magical Coutinho finally beat the overworked Hathairattanakool. The Brazilian bamboozled 3 defenders before shooting past the helpless keeper with a goal of stunning individual brilliance.

    Thailand rallied late in the first half and Liverpool had Mignolet to thank for staying in front. Thailand’s Anun’s powerful strike from the edge of the box appeared destined for the net but Mignolet pulled off a stunning reflex save to keep the Reds in front.

    Liverpool had little trouble in the second half as they dominated proceedings. Coutinho’s vision allowed him to find Aspas with a wonderful pass which the Spaniard controlled instantly before netting his third goal in four friendlies since his move from Celta Vigo.

    Aspas then turned provider as he unselfishly laid the ball off to Gerrard who sent a stunning lob over the keeper to make it 3-0.

    Suarez came off the bench with half an hour to play and was left frustrated when his header hit the underside of the bar from a Gerrard cross. Henderson went close before Gerrard saw his effort hit the woodwork late on.

    Summary

    Liverpool played well and created a lot of chances against Thailand. Plenty of players managed some game time as the players look sharper with every match. Gerrard bossed the midfield and scored another brilliant goal. Aspas scored again and his form in his young Liverpool career is impressive. Coutinho is just a magician and was awesome again for Liverpool, his goal was pure class and he is going to be a very important player for the Reds this season. Mignolet is looking like a great buy and the big Belgian has not put a foot wrong in goal. Overall it was another good workout for Liverpool as they have made plenty of new friends and left many great memories for their distant supporters.
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    Quote Originally Posted by 2461 View Post
    Nice reports
    Thank you for reading them .

    YNWA
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    naturalskill is online now First team regular
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    Quote Originally Posted by 2461 View Post
    Nice reports
    yeah I always read Liverword's match reports

    well impressed with Coutinho today

    also very pleased to see Mignolet playing so well

    I did try to start my own thread to analyse the development of the team as the new season progresses but for some reason the thread has not appeared on this forum
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    ForkHandles is offline Boot Room insider
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    Quote Originally Posted by naturalskill View Post
    yeah I always read Liverword's match reports

    well impressed with Coutinho today

    also very pleased to see Mignolet playing so well

    I did try to start my own thread to analyse the development of the team as the new season progresses but for some reason the thread has not appeared on this forum
    Have just approved it now, it's a few threads down.
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    naturalskill is online now First team regular
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    Quote Originally Posted by ForkHandles View Post
    Have just approved it now, it's a few threads down.
    Thanks ForkHandles

    can't wait for the new season
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    ForkHandles is offline Boot Room insider
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    Quote Originally Posted by naturalskill View Post
    Thanks ForkHandles

    can't wait for the new season
    Nae bother, hope you're good mate.

    Me neither, will try and contribute to your thread in the future.
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  11. #11  
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    appreciate your support, thanks for reading my reports. YNWA
    Quote Originally Posted by naturalskill View Post
    yeah I always read Liverword's match reports

    well impressed with Coutinho today

    also very pleased to see Mignolet playing so well

    I did try to start my own thread to analyse the development of the team as the new season progresses but for some reason the thread has not appeared on this forum
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    Liverpool 2-0 Olympiacos Match Report

    Anfield paid tribute and showed their appreciation to one of Liverpool’s greatest ever players Steven Gerrard in his testimonial match against Olympiacos. Goals from Joe Allen in the first half and Jordan Henderson in the second half capped a superb day for the Liverpool Captain.

    The Team

    Although the match was Steven Gerrard’s testimonial it was still an important match in terms of match fitness for Brendan Rodgers and his squad as they prepare for the start of the new season. Rodgers started a team that looked like the one that could start against Stoke in Liverpool’s first game of the season. Mignolet, Enrique, Agger, Toure, Johnson, Lucas, Allen, Coutinho, Sterling and Aspas started alongside the man of the moment Steven Gerrard.

    The Match

    Steven Gerrard was welcomed by a guard of honour formed by both sets of players prior to kick-off and a standing ovation from the Anfield faithful as they saluted their hero.

    Liverpool enjoyed plenty of possession in the early stages with loud cheers every time Gerrard received a touch of the ball. Joe Allen flashed a shot wide in the game’s first real effort.

    Moments later Joe Allen pounced on a sloppy pass from the visitors before releasing new signing Aspas but the striker’s effort was blocked away.

    Gerrard had the crowd excited when he lined up a long range drive but his effort was off target. Then Gerrard had a joke with referee Hasey when the unfortunate referee intercepted one of his passes.

    Next Aspas showed a lovely bit of skill when he cleverly beat his marker before shooting into the side-netting with Joe Allen again providing the assist as his attacking runs forward were providing a big threat to the Greeks.

    Liverpool continued to attack with Sterling and Coutinho combining in a counter-attack before Sterling’s weak shot was easily saved by the keeper.

    Then Liverpool should have taken the lead when an extravagant flick by Aspas found Allen in the centre of the penalty area but the midfielder side-footed his volley over the bar.

    But Allen made no mistake moments later in the 23rd minute when Joe Allen tapped home an Aspas low drive across the face of goal to give Liverpool a deserved lead.

    Liverpool looked to be enjoying themselves with the goal encouraging them even more and next it was Glen Johnson to try his luck from long range but his strike just missed the far corner.

    Brendan Rodgers continued with the same eleven players to start the second half and Liverpool continued to attack their visitors as Coutinho glided past a couple of defenders before shooting towards the far post but Olympiacos goalkeeper Megveri saved comfortably.

    Then the lively Sterling curled a shot wide as he continues to impress this pre-season, before watching his lob go agonisingly wide of the post before the Anfield crowd showed great appreciation towards the introduction of Luis Suarez and Jamie Carragher.

    Jordan Henderson also made his entry for Joe Allen and within seconds he made it 2-0 for Liverpool after finishing off a move involving good work from Raheem Sterling.

    Henderson almost scored his second goal moments later but he shot straight at the keeper. Jose Enrique was thwarted by the keeper in the next attack after finding space in the box.

    With 15 minutes remaining when the Kop saluted a former favourite when Robbie Fowler was introduced, and the crowd was on its feet when Gerrard slipped the ball through to Fowler but his quick strike was deflected wide for a corner.

    Then with 6 minutes remaining Steven Gerrard was replaced by Jay Spearing to a standing ovation as he left the field and end an emotional day for the Liverpool skipper.

    The match finished 2-0 in another impressive performance for Liverpool, but the day was all about Steven Gerrard.

    Summary

    The Liverpool supporters paid their respects with a tremendous turn out at Anfield for Steven Gerrard for his testimonial. But Liverpool treated the match seriously as they showed great energy and commitment from the start as Olympiacos were pegged back for most of the game. Rodgers started the match with eleven players that will probably start the match against Stoke and he gave them an hour before making the expected substitutions. Aspas looked lively up front and Sterling is showing great confidence in his play that lacked at times last season. Joe Allen was very impressive as he starred in an attacking midfield role and should have scored a hat-trick in the first half, but it was good to see him score and get into forward positions. Lucas is looking back to his best as he thwarted countless Olympiacos attacks. Great finish by Henderson after just coming on and he could be an important player for Liverpool this season as he looks more confident. Overall it was a good performance by the team and a special day for a special player Steven Gerrard.
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    Acumen is online now First team regular
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    Well done. Will make this a regular visit after matches.
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    Thanks very much Acumen appreciate your comments.
    Quote Originally Posted by Acumen View Post
    Well done. Will make this a regular visit after matches.
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    Acumen is online now First team regular
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    Quote Originally Posted by theliverword View Post
    Thanks very much Acumen appreciate your comments.
    No probs mate. Always appreciate good insights.
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    Valerenga 1-4 Liverpool Match Report

    Liverpool continued their pre-season in good form with a comfortable win in Oslo against Valerenga. Much of the talk surrounding Liverpool at the moment is about want away striker Luis Suarez, but the speculation didn’t affect Liverpool’s performance as they won through goals from Luis Alberto, Iago Aspas, Martin Kelly and Raheem Sterling. The match was watched by Liverpool’s Principal owner John W Henry for the first time in 13 months.

    The Team

    Brendan Rodgers started the match with some of his squad players against Valerenga with Brad Jones starting in goal with a team of Alberto, Aspas, Henderson, Coates, Downing, Spearing, Allen, Flanagan, Ibe and Wisdom in front of him.

    The Match

    Liverpool struggled the last time they travelled to this part of the world when they required two late goals from Daniel Agger to salvage a draw. Liverpool enjoyed a far more comfortable match this time around as they dictated play.

    Liverpool went close in the opening stages with Joe Allen and Jordan Ibe having efforts. Meanwhile Aspas was becoming a constant menace to the Norwegian defence and was twice denied by good goalkeeping from Valerenga’s Kongshavn.

    But it was Aspas who influenced the opening goal for Liverpool on the half hour mark when he struck the frame of the goal with an effort before Luis Alberto drilled into the Valerenga net from 20 yards.

    Liverpool were in total control but were surprisingly pegged back when Gonzalez headed an in-swinging corner past Brad Jones to give the Norwegians parity.

    Liverpool responded with Aspas scoring his fourth goal of pre-season as he showed good movement to finish from Downing’s cross.

    Brendan Rodgers made 10 changes to his personnel for the start of the second half Assaidi and Sterling providing the pace down the flanks. Liverpool extended their lead in the 54th minute when Valerenga struggled to deal with a corner that landed in the centre of the penalty box which invited Martin Kelly to force the ball over the line to make the score 3-1.

    Within 60 seconds Kolo Toure thumped a header against the bar from a set-piece as Liverpool continued to pressure the hosts. Borini went equally close to scoring when he pounced on a loose ball before rounding the keeper but his effort rolled all the way along the line but refused to hit the net.

    Borini was again cursing his luck as he struck the crossbar from 20 yards with 15 minutes remaining but Liverpool did manage another goal in the closing moments with Sterling scoring and giving Liverpool a 4-1 win in their 6th straight success.

    Summary

    Liverpool performed well creating a lot of chances in their trip to Oslo as the team look in good shape for the new season. Rodgers managed to give most players a run out and that is very important in pre-season. Liverpool are playing with confidence and players like Jordan Henderson and Joe Allen are feeding of this with fine performances. Aspas played very well once again and he is finding the net in a regular basis. With one more friendly to play, the signs are looking good for the start of the season.
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    Celtic 1-0 Liverpool Match Report

    Liverpool finished their pre-season with a game against Scottish Champion Celtic in Dublin. Liverpool have enjoyed a good pre-season with 6 wins, but that run was to end as they lost 1-0 to a first half goal from Balde. Liverpool dominated possession for long periods of the game, but failed to break down a stubborn Celtic defence.

    The Team

    Brendan Rodgers fielded a team to start Liverpool’s last pre-season game with one eye on next week’s opening game of the season. Rodgers selected a strong side to start against Celtic, although Agger didn’t travel to Dublin after receiving a knock last week against Olympiacos. Liverpool’s team read, Mignolet, Enrique, Wisdom, Toure, Johnson, Lucas, Gerrard, Allen, Downing, Aspas and Coutinho.

    The Match

    Both sets of supporters provided an amazing rendition of You’ll Never Walk Alone prior to kick-off in an amazing atmosphere in the Aviva Stadium. Liverpool started with a strong team intent on continuing their good pre-season form prior to next weekend’s opening game of the season.

    Liverpool dominated possession in the early stages but fell behind to a goal from Celtic striker Balde after the big striker managed to knick the ball past Wisdom before side-footing his effort off the trailing leg of the onrushing Mignolet which altered the direction of the shot resulting ball bouncing into the back of the net.

    Liverpool showed a good reaction from the set-back as they produced a flurry of attempts at the Celtic goal. But Zaluska kept the Reds at bay with a string of impressive saves.

    Zaluska raced of his line to thwart an effort by Coutinho, before producing an even better save a minute later when he acrobatically palmed away a shot from Downing that was destined for the top corner after the winger had cut in from the right.

    Then Glen Johnson broke free behind the Celtic defence but his low shot was saved by Zaluska as the Pole continued to thwart Liverpool’s attacks.

    Celtic almost doubled their lead just before half-time against the run of play when Izaguirre’s curling cross was headed towards goal by Stokes, but his effort was easily saved by Mignolet.

    The second half brought a pleasing sight for Liverpool supporters with the introduction of Daniel Sturridge, who made his first appearance of the pre-season after recovering from injury he received on international duty.

    Sturridge made an immediate impact with a powerful shot that just missed the far post. Sturridge looked in determined mood and his enthusiasm had an adverse effect when he rushed to meet Downing’s cross only to block Coutinho’s path to the ball as both players failed to make contact with the winger’s cross.

    As Liverpool continued to threaten, Kolo Toure thought he had levelled 10 minutes into the second half when he headed in a Gerrard free-kick only to see his effort ruled out for offside.

    Then Sturridge released Coutinho with a clever free-kick but the Brazilian sliced his effort well wide. The two players combined again with minutes left, this time Coutinho’s clever pass sent Sturridge clear, but his lobbed effort bounced just wide of the far post with Forster stranded.

    Celtic held out for a morale boosting win as Liverpool ran out of time in their quest to break the stubborn Celtic defence and lose their first pre-season game of the summer.

    Summary

    Liverpool lost against a resilient Celtic team who worked hard defensively to frustrate Liverpool after taking an early lead, and Liverpool will have to get used to this as team’s will park the bus at Anfield in particular. Liverpool worked hard, but far too often their final ball was not good enough. Liverpool failed to get enough players into the Celtic penalty box too when on attack, but at times they were thwarted with great defending and good goalkeeping. But Liverpool’s defence looked unconvincing at times with Celtic’s rare attacks, especially from cross balls, and Andre Wisdom looked very nervous and had an uncomfortable afternoon against the robust Balde. It was encouraging to see Sturridge back and he looked pretty sharp considering his lengthy lay-off, and he will be needed in the coming weeks. The result is meaningless and Liverpool have enjoyed a good pre-season overall, but the serious business starts next week.
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    geralion is online now Or a tiger they're almost as good
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    I'm not sure the result is meaningless, after all, Celtic were not a million miles away from the way Stoke play - big players, physical, stubborn defence... and we get them at Anfield next week. I hope the good luck fairy has time to drop by!
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    Liverpool 1-0 Stoke City Match Report

    Liverpool got off to the perfect start to the new season with a 1-0 win over Stoke City at Anfield. Daniel Sturridge provided the only goal of the game with a stunning 25 yard strike. Liverpool dominated the match creating a number of good chances but were left to thank goalkeeper Simon Mignolet for an amazing penalty save from Walters in the last couple of minutes.

    The Team

    Brendan Rodgers gave 3 players their Liverpool debuts with Simon Mignolet starting in goal with Kolo Toure in front of him in the centre of defence, Aspas started in an attacking role. Glen Johnson, Jose Enrique and Daniel Agger completed the rest of Liverpool’s defence. Coutinho, Lucas, Gerrard, Henderson and Sturridge made up the rest of Liverpool’s team for the first game of the season.

    The Match

    Both teams were greeted to a very loud rendition of Liverpool’s famous anthem You’ll Never Walk Alone prior to kick-off and the atmosphere certainly inspired the Liverpool players as they flew out of the blocks at the start of the match.

    But it was Stoke who almost took an early lead when Robert Huth smashed a shot against the Liverpool crossbar after a Stoke corner kick.

    Liverpool forced Stoke back into their defensive third and Sturridge headed the ball into the net from a Gerrard cross, but his effort was ruled out for offside.

    Then 2 minutes later Toure headed another Gerrard delivery against the bar with Begovic beaten, Sturridge could only blast the rebound high over the bar.

    A minute later Sturridge’s cross-shot was cleared off the line by Erik Pieters as Liverpool created chance after chance with some sharp passing and movement.

    Coutinho almost put Aspas through in the box but his pass was just too strong and Aspas’s stretched effort was easily saved by Begovic.

    Liverpool’s energetic performance was typified by the efforts of Aspas, Coutinho and Sturridge as they pressed high up the park.

    Enrique was then denied by Begovic after combining with Aspas inside the Stoke area and Gerrard shot over from the rebound.

    Begovic once again frustrated Liverpool, this time saving a shot from Henderson after another great pass from Coutinho.

    Moments later it was Sturridge being denied by Begovic after he fired a right-foot shot at the Stoke goal.

    But a minute later Sturridge broke the deadlock with a stunning 25 yard strike low into the bottom corner as Begovic was finally beaten.

    Stoke responded to losing a goal with Walters bringing out a good save from Mignolet as Stoke tried to level before the break.

    Then just before the half-time whistle Lucas cleared off the line from a Stoke corner to keep Liverpool’s lead intact.

    Liverpool started the second half the way they started the first with Coutinho driving down the left wing before curling an effort wide of goal.

    Begovic continued to excel in Stoke’s goal as he saved from Henderson after a cross by Coutinho. Moments later Sturridge had another shot saved by Begovic which resulted in a corner.

    Aspas flicked a header just wide from Gerrard’s corner-kick. Liverpool continued to press for a second goal and Henderson couldn’t have went closer when his curling strike bounced back off the inside of the post with Begovic beaten.

    As time ran on and only one goal separating the teams, you could sense a nervous atmosphere surrounding Anfield and Stoke appreciated this as they pushed forward.

    But Gerrard tried to calm the nerves as he stepped up to take a 30 yard free-kick, but not for the first time Begovic was equal to it as he clawed away the ball in spectacular fashion as it headed for the top corner.

    Then former Liverpool player Adam had Mignolet worried as he tried his luck from the half-way line, the big Belgian just managing to tip the ball over his bar.

    But with 3 minutes to go Liverpool were stunned when Stoke were awarded a penalty after Agger was adjudged to have handled the ball as he attempted to defend a Stoke free-kick.

    Walters hit the resulting penalty kick low to Mignolet’s right, but the Belgian guessed the right way and palmed away the strike before reacting quickly to block Jones’s follow up to the delight of the Liverpool players and supporters .

    Liverpool managed to hold out for the remaining minutes to go top of the league, if only for a few hours.

    Summary

    Liverpool really did play well and should have won by a bigger margin, but for an amazing goalkeeping performance by Stoke’s Begovic and some poor finishing. Liverpool played a high tempo pressing game that Stoke found difficult to cope with. Liverpool’s movement was also impressive, especially from Aspas, Sturridge, Coutinho and Henderson who all interchanged their positions frequently. Sturridge looked impressively sharp considering he missed most of pre-season through injury and he deserved a goal for his efforts. Stoke are the type of team that Liverpool have struggled to beat in recent years and that makes the win particularly pleasing, although it was heart in the mouth stuff at the award of the late penalty. But what a great double save from debutant Mignolet to seal Liverpool’s win. It would have been really difficult to take if Liverpool had not won the match after playing so well. Overall a great win and start to the season for Liverpool and hopefully Liverpool can build on this good start in the coming weeks.
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  20. #20  
    lonewolf kal is online now Boot Room insider
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    excellent summary of the match. Nail biting stuff, but we persevered and got our just rewards. one down 37 to go.
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  21. #21  
    smitty1 is offline Armchair supporter
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    thought we played really well,still a little worried about our defending off corners and free kicks, need some muscle when against teams like stoke. team spirit really looked good .aspas coutinno and sturridge worked really well together. who needs suaeze

    Liverpool got off to the perfect start to the new season with a 1-0 win over Stoke City at Anfield. Daniel Sturridge provided the only goal of the game with a stunning 25 yard strike. Liverpool dominated the match creating a number of good chances but were left to thank goalkeeper Simon Mignolet for an amazing penalty save from Walters in the last couple of minutes.

    The Team

    Brendan Rodgers gave 3 players their Liverpool debuts with Simon Mignolet starting in goal with Kolo Toure in front of him in the centre of defence, Aspas started in an attacking role. Glen Johnson, Jose Enrique and Daniel Agger completed the rest of Liverpool’s defence. Coutinho, Lucas, Gerrard, Henderson and Sturridge made up the rest of Liverpool’s team for the first game of the season.

    The Match

    Both teams were greeted to a very loud rendition of Liverpool’s famous anthem You’ll Never Walk Alone prior to kick-off and the atmosphere certainly inspired the Liverpool players as they flew out of the blocks at the start of the match.

    But it was Stoke who almost took an early lead when Robert Huth smashed a shot against the Liverpool crossbar after a Stoke corner kick.

    Liverpool forced Stoke back into their defensive third and Sturridge headed the ball into the net from a Gerrard cross, but his effort was ruled out for offside.

    Then 2 minutes later Toure headed another Gerrard delivery against the bar with Begovic beaten, Sturridge could only blast the rebound high over the bar.

    A minute later Sturridge’s cross-shot was cleared off the line by Erik Pieters as Liverpool created chance after chance with some sharp passing and movement.

    Coutinho almost put Aspas through in the box but his pass was just too strong and Aspas’s stretched effort was easily saved by Begovic.

    Liverpool’s energetic performance was typified by the efforts of Aspas, Coutinho and Sturridge as they pressed high up the park.

    Enrique was then denied by Begovic after combining with Aspas inside the Stoke area and Gerrard shot over from the rebound.

    Begovic once again frustrated Liverpool, this time saving a shot from Henderson after another great pass from Coutinho.

    Moments later it was Sturridge being denied by Begovic after he fired a right-foot shot at the Stoke goal.

    But a minute later Sturridge broke the deadlock with a stunning 25 yard strike low into the bottom corner as Begovic was finally beaten.

    Stoke responded to losing a goal with Walters bringing out a good save from Mignolet as Stoke tried to level before the break.

    Then just before the half-time whistle Lucas cleared off the line from a Stoke corner to keep Liverpool’s lead intact.

    Liverpool started the second half the way they started the first with Coutinho driving down the left wing before curling an effort wide of goal.

    Begovic continued to excel in Stoke’s goal as he saved from Henderson after a cross by Coutinho. Moments later Sturridge had another shot saved by Begovic which resulted in a corner.

    Aspas flicked a header just wide from Gerrard’s corner-kick. Liverpool continued to press for a second goal and Henderson couldn’t have went closer when his curling strike bounced back off the inside of the post with Begovic beaten.

    As time ran on and only one goal separating the teams, you could sense a nervous atmosphere surrounding Anfield and Stoke appreciated this as they pushed forward.

    But Gerrard tried to calm the nerves as he stepped up to take a 30 yard free-kick, but not for the first time Begovic was equal to it as he clawed away the ball in spectacular fashion as it headed for the top corner.

    Then former Liverpool player Adam had Mignolet worried as he tried his luck from the half-way line, the big Belgian just managing to tip the ball over his bar.

    But with 3 minutes to go Liverpool were stunned when Stoke were awarded a penalty after Agger was adjudged to have handled the ball as he attempted to defend a Stoke free-kick.

    Walters hit the resulting penalty kick low to Mignolet’s right, but the Belgian guessed the right way and palmed away the strike before reacting quickly to block Jones’s follow up to the delight of the Liverpool players and supporters .

    Liverpool managed to hold out for the remaining minutes to go top of the league, if only for a few hours.

    Summary

    Liverpool really did play well and should have won by a bigger margin, but for an amazing goalkeeping performance by Stoke’s Begovic and some poor finishing. Liverpool played a high tempo pressing game that Stoke found difficult to cope with. Liverpool’s movement was also impressive, especially from Aspas, Sturridge, Coutinho and Henderson who all interchanged their positions frequently. Sturridge looked impressively sharp considering he missed most of pre-season through injury and he deserved a goal for his efforts. Stoke are the type of team that Liverpool have struggled to beat in recent years and that makes the win particularly pleasing, although it was heart in the mouth stuff at the award of the late penalty. But what a great double save from debutant Mignolet to seal Liverpool’s win. It would have been really difficult to take if Liverpool had not won the match after playing so well. Overall a great win and start to the season for Liverpool and hopefully Liverpool can build on this good start in the coming weeks.[/QUOTE]
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    Quote Originally Posted by kal-savik View Post
    excellent summary of the match. Nail biting stuff, but we persevered and got our just rewards. one down 37 to go.
    I am afraid we need to improve the finishing to have any hopes for top 4. Twenty + shots and only one goal?? Thanks to the goalkeeper for saving the 3 points. Excellent passing, good control, a lot of running, all that is good BUT the game is all about sending the ball into the net. AND not giving away gifts at the closing stages of the match. Good luck for the rest of the season.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cyfan View Post
    I am afraid we need to improve the finishing to have any hopes for top 4. Twenty + shots and only one goal?? Thanks to the goalkeeper for saving the 3 points. Excellent passing, good control, a lot of running, all that is good BUT the game is all about sending the ball into the net. AND not giving away gifts at the closing stages of the match. Good luck for the rest of the season.
    your missing one thing their keeper was better than ours more heroics came from him than mignolet, we were saved once they were saved several times....

    begovic was motm if you didnt know before
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    Aston Villa 0-1 Liverpool Match Report

    Liverpool made it two wins from two games to start this new season off as they recorded a 1-0 victory over Aston Villa at Villa Park. Daniel Sturridge’s first half goal was the difference between the sides as Liverpool dominated the first half before defending their slender lead in the second half against Aston Villa’s constant pressure.

    The Team

    Liverpool had a full week to prepare for the Aston Villa match after winning their first game of the season against Stoke last Saturday, whereas Aston Villa have had a tough week of fixtures to start off the new season. Villa beat Arsenal away from home last Saturday before losing away to Chelsea in midweek.

    Brendan Rodgers named an unchanged team from the side that beat Stoke for the visit to Villa Park with Mignolet, Johnson, Enrique, Toure, Agger, Lucas, Gerrard, Henderson, Aspas, Coutinho and Sturridge all starting for the Reds. The headline news was that new signing Aly Cissokho was included on the substitutes’ bench.

    The Match

    Liverpool started the match brightly enjoying plenty of possession in the early stages of the match and it was Liverpool who created the first opportunity when Aspas slipped the ball through to Johnson but the full-back’s effort was blocked.

    The statistics read Liverpool had 75 per cent of the ball in the opening 10 minutes of the match as Liverpool established their passing game early on.

    Enrique linked with Coutinho down the left flank before the Brazilian unfortunately picked his spot in the Holte End. Liverpool were still enjoying the majority of possession without troubling the Villa goal.

    But then in the 21st minute Sturridge broke the deadlock when he danced around a succession of challenges before rifling the ball into the top corner with the outside of his left foot.

    Liverpool’s movement from Aspas, Sturridge, Coutinho and Henderson continued to cause Villa trouble just like Stoke had experienced the previous week.

    But the hosts became more of an attacking threat in the closing stages of the first half and Toure had to make a terrific sliding tackle to thwart one attack before Mignolet palmed away the resulting Benteke corner kick.

    Villa almost equalised just before half-time when Weimann’s powerful effort was slightly deflected over Mignolet’s crossbar after Liverpool had failed to clear an awkward bouncing ball.

    Villa started the second half the way the ended the first half, but it was Sturridge who threatened first with a terrific dribble along the right wing before producing a centre which the Villa defence managed to clear for a corner.

    Then Villa were awarded a free-kick in a dangerous position but Bacuna’s effort hit the wall before Westwood blasted the rebound high and wide.

    Moments later Westwood had another strike at goal but he shot over.

    Villa continued to do most of the attacking with Liverpool playing on the counter-attack, and one of those counter-attacks resulted in an opportunity for Johnson but he thrashed his shot high and wide from a dangerous position.

    Then Liverpool had to thank their Captain for a brilliant saving block as Gerrard threw himself at a shot from El Ahmadi at the edge of the box.

    Rodgers brought on Cissokho for his debut replacing Aspas in the 68th minute as Liverpool continued to defend their slender lead.

    Villa went close in the 75th minute when Toure could only head a clearance to Agbonlahor but the forward’s instant left-footed effort went wide of the post.

    Tonev worked Mignolet with a rasping effort before a defensive mix-up cost the Reds a corner which the visitors’ managed to clear.

    Joe Allen replaced Coutinho with 8 minutes to go as Rodgers hoped his introduction would give Liverpool more possession in the closing stages.

    But Villa continued to threaten and Mignolet had to pull off a brilliant save from Benteke as the big striker hit a powerful volley on target after breaking free of the Liverpool defence.

    Liverpool had a good shout for a penalty when Sturridge was felled by Guzan as he tried to go past him but the referee waved away Liverpool’s appeals for a penalty.

    Benteke’s chance proved to be Villa’s last chance as Liverpool managed to run down the clock to earn a hard worked win against an energetic Aston Villa.

    Summary

    A terrific start to the season for Liverpool with 2 wins from their first 2 games. Liverpool played some very good football in the first half with some great possession and movement from Sturridge, Henderson, Aspas and Coutinho. A great goal by Sturridge fit to win any match as he produced a moment of sheer individual class to win the game for Liverpool. Sturridge was unlucky not to be awarded a penalty late on when Guzan brought him down, it was a clear penalty. Gerrard and Lucas were superb in midfield against an energetic Villa midfield, but what pleased me most was how well Liverpool defended against constant pressure from Villa in the second half. Toure and Agger were superb in the centre of defence and they martialled the dangerous Benteke superbly for the whole game. Mignolet again proved what a good signing he is by making a couple of great saves, especially the one late on from Benteke. Another good performance from Liverpool and a good ground out, gritty win which will give great confidence going into next week’s match against Manchester United.
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    Liverpool 4-2 Notts County Match Report

    Liverpool turned their attention to the Capital One Cup with a second round tie against Notts County at Anfield. Early goals from Sterling and Sturridge seemed to have the Premiership side on easy street, but the Division One side hit back in the second half with goals from Arquin and Coombes to take the tie into extra time. Despite being reduced to 10 men through an injury to Kolo Toure, Liverpool added goals from Sturridge and Henderson in the extra period to finally kill off any hopes of an upset.

    The Team

    Brendan Rodgers wasn’t taking any chances against Notts County as he fielded a strong side with Mignolet, Cissokho, Toure, Wisdom, Johnson, Allen, Gerrard, Alberto, Sterling, Ibe and Daniel Sturridge. The blend of experienced first team players alongside speedy youngsters Sterling and Ibe formed an attacking line-up.

    The Match

    Liverpool started the match on the front foot and they were rewarded with an early goal inside the first four minutes when Sterling charged through the centre of the County half before drilling a powerful shot underneath the arm of Bialkowski and into the corner of the net.

    Liverpool’s good start was hindered by an injury to new signing Cissokho as he was replaced by Daniel Agger. But Agger almost made an immediate impact when his glancing header rattled off the far post from a Gerrard free-kick.

    Liverpool continued to create chances and Sturridge was next to go close when he curled an effort wide of the far post after great work from Joe Allen set him up.

    But Sturridge made no mistake with his next opportunity when he rifled a shot into the far corner after receiving a defence splitting pass from Gerrard to put Liverpool 2-0 to the good.

    Liverpool continued to press for goals and Agger’s powerful header was brilliantly saved from Bialkowski as the pressure mounted.

    Next it was Gerrard with a trademark burst into the box before rattling the post after receiving a perfectly weighted pass from Sterling.

    The second half brought a change of mood from the home side as they looked to conserve energy by sitting a little deep and allowing Notts County more possession.

    Callum McGregor tried an ambitious 30 yard drive but it was easily gathered by Mignolet. But the game changed when Arquin headed past Mignolet after Smith’s header across goal from a floated set-piece sending the travelling supporters wild with delight.

    Liverpool responded to losing the goal with Toure half-volleying a Gerrard cross against the woodwork as Liverpool’s bad luck in front of goal continued.

    The 2-1 scoreline looked enough for the Reds until Arquin surged to the Liverpool bye-line before his cross found Coombes who shot past Mignolet at the back post to shock the hosts.

    The last thing Liverpool wanted was extra-time and Agger went close with a deflected shot before Sterling sliced Glen Johnson’s cross wide of the post.

    As the game moved into an extra half hour Liverpool found themselves reduced to 10 men after Toure left the field on a stretcher and all Liverpool’s substitutes used.

    But despite the disadvantage, Sturridge fired his side in front again after a rapid counter-attack involving Coutinho.

    Moments later Henderson made it 4-2 with a terrific individual goal which saw him nutmeg Liddle before calmly side-footing past Bialkowski into the corner of the net.

    Liverpool made hard work of their win after leading comfortably at one stage but after a scare they will be only too glad to be in the draw for the next round.

    Summary

    I was very pleased to see Rodgers start with a strong team in a cup competition and also give youngsters Wisdom, Ibe and Sterling a start. Liverpool played well in the first half and should have been more than 2 goals to the good but they did get complacent in the second half and almost paid for it. But Liverpool did show great character to go on and win in extra time after going down to 10 men. Sad to see Toure leave the field on a stretcher as he was playing superbly in defence, Sterling was another who played well and great to see him score. But Daniel Sturridge is on fire at the moment and long may it continue. Stressful game with a happy ending.
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    Newcastle 2-2 Liverpool Match Report

    Liverpool had to settle for a draw against 10 man Newcastle after falling behind twice in the match. Yohan Cabaye put the hosts ahead with a long range effort before Liverpool were awarded a penalty when Mbiwa fouled Suarez in the box resulting in the defender being shown a red card. Gerrard converted the spot-kick. Newcastle took the lead again when substitute Dummett scored in the 56th minute before Sturridge salvaged a point for the Reds.

    The Team

    Brendan Rodgers welcomed back Glen Johnson and Joe Allen back into his squad after both players were declared fit again, although Lucas was unavailable for selection with his wife giving birth to atheir daughter. Johnson started at right-back while Joe Allen started on the bench. Rodgers’ team read Mignolet, Toure, Sakho, Skrtel, Johnson, Gerrard, Henderson, Cissokho, Suarez, Moses and Sturridge.

    The Match
    Both teams cancelled each other out in the opening stages but Newcastlel looked very determined to avenge the heavy defeat they suffered against Liverpool last season, although only 4 players started from last April’s demolition.

    Newcastle’s determined attitude made it difficult for Liverpool to establish their passing game as the visitors struggled to create opportunities.

    With the game going through an uneventful phase in the match, it suddenly came to life when Cabaye hit a stunning long-range effort past the diving Mignolet to give the hosts the lead.

    Newcastle were buoyed by the goal and Liverpool struggled to cope with Newcastle’s enthusiasm. But Liverpool got back into the match when Suarez muscled his way into the box before Mbiwa fouled the striker. Referee Marriner produced a red card from his pocket for the Newcastle defender to the fury of 50,000 home fans. With all hell breaking loose, Steven Gerrard remained the calmest man in the stadium to convert the spot-kick and bring Liverpool level.

    Liverpool started the second half with high hopes of winning with their numerical advantage. Glen Johnson saw an effort turned round the post by Krul as Liverpool looked for a second goal, but Newcastle continued to attack and Skrtel got a vital touch to prevent Remy being clean through on goal.

    Newcastle took the lead once again in the 56th minute when substitute Dummett stole in behind the Liverpool defence to divert a looping cross past Mignolet.

    Brendan Rodgers introduced Alberto for Sakho as he tried to salvage the game and he was rewarded when Suarez broke clear of the Newcastle defence before floating a cross into the centre for Sturridge to head into the net.

    Liverpool looked for a winner in the remaining minutes as Newcastle looked to hang on for a point. Suarez skimmed the top of the crossbar with a volley and saw a free-kick well saved by Krul with the last kick of the game as the game ended in a draw.

    Summary

    Away games are always difficult and Newcastle made it very difficult for Liverpool. Newcastle were allowed too many long range efforts which their first goal came from. I felt Lucas would have prevented the hosts from having so much space to produce so many efforts. Liverpool seemed a bit pedestrian in their play as if too many players coming back from international duty were feeling the effects. Liverpool got the break they needed to get back into the game just before half-time but they failed to capitalise on their good fortune in the second half allowing Newcastle to take the lead again. Overall it was a good point for Liverpool considering they had to come from behind twice, although at 1-1 and playing against 10 men I expected Liverpool to go on and win.
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    Out of interest, are you an aspiring journalist or just doing these for fun?
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    Quote Originally Posted by swg19 View Post
    Out of interest, are you an aspiring journalist or just doing these for fun?
    I would love to earn money from my writing but just writing for fun at the moment. Thanks for asking Annie Roader.
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    Liverpool 4-1 West Brom Match Report

    Liverpool ran out comfortable winners against recent bogey side West Brom at Anfield with Luis Suarez stealing the show with his first ever hat-trick at Anfield. Daniel Sturridge scored the goal of the match with a sublime chip as West Brom couldn’t handle Liverpool’s S.A.S. Morrison scored a consolation goal for the Baggies from the penalty spot.

    The Team

    Brendan Rodgers welcomed back Lucas into his team after missing Liverpool’s last two matches. Coutinho wasn’t risked as he recovers from his shoulder injury but he should be available for next week’s match at Arsenal. The Liverpool eleven that started against West Brom were Mignolet, Johnson, Cissokho, Toure, Skrtel, Sakho, Gerrard, Lucas, Henderson, Suarez and Sturridge.

    The Match

    Liverpool started the match in high tempo fashion that was lacking last weekend at Newcastle and Suarez wasn’t long in firing his first effort towards goal as he skimmed a low shot wide of the left hand post in the 6th minute.

    Suarez turned provider for Gerrard moments later but the captain’s drive also missed the target. Then Suarez went down in the box under severe pressure from Gareth McAuley but the Uruguayan’s appeals were in vain.

    Suarez was everywhere and it was no surprise when he broke the deadlock in the 11th minute when he produced a superb solo effort nutmegging Olsson before firing into the bottom corner past Myhill.

    Liverpool continued to dominate possession and doubled their lead 6 minutes later when Suarez powered in a superb header into the top corner from the edge of the box from a Cissokho cross.

    Skrtel should have scored a third goal for Liverpool after a superbly worked free kick involving Suarez and Gerrard set up the Slovakian but the big defender missed his kick from close range.

    The unstoppable Suarez curled a free-kick the wrong side of the right post from 25 yards and Henderson was inches away from sweeping a curling effort into the net to end a brilliant passing move from the hosts.

    West Brom almost pulled a goal back just before half-time when Anelka raced behind Skrtel from a long through ball but the big Slovakian recovered brilliantly to clear the ball off the line with Mignolet beaten.

    Two minutes after the restart, Sturridge drilled a free-kick from the right narrowly wide of Myhill’s post. The visitors responded with Yacob curling an effort off target.

    The third goal of the match was always going to be so important and it was Liverpool who scored it when a fantastic delivery from a free-kick from Gerrard was met by a glancing header from Suarez to give the Uruguayan his first hat-trick at Anfield.

    Liverpool were rampant at this point and Sturridge was next to threaten when he met Johnson’s centre before firing a thunderous long-range shot off the underside of the crossbar.

    West Brom were then handed a lifeline when referee Jon Moss pointed to the penalty spot after his assistant had flagged for an infringement after Billy Jones tumbled in the penalty box, substitute Morrison converted the spot-kick.

    Liverpool were knocked off their stride for some time after conceding a goal as West Brom hoped to take advantage. Chris Brunt pulled a low strike across the face of goal before sending a snap-shot too high.

    But Sturridge calmed the nerves around Anfield with a superb goal when he produced an incredible chip from distance to beat Myhill and finally kill off any hopes the visitors had of a comeback.

    Suarez almost scored an amazing fourth goal when he produced an acrobatic volley against the crossbar via a reflex save by Myhill. Mignolet responded with a reflex save of his own when he denied Morrison from close range.

    Liverpool settled for four goals as Suarez tried to net a fifth only to be denied by a great save by Myhill before he left the field to a standing ovation from the Liverpool supporters.

    Summary

    This was Liverpool’s best performance of the season as they destroyed a good West Brom side. Liverpool started in the right way by playing a very high tempo and put the visitors under pressure from the start. Liverpool passed the ball confidently throughout the match and created numerous chances as the Baggies struggled to cope with Liverpool’s game.

    Luis Suarez was unplayable and produced a brilliant hat-trick as West Brom’s defence couldn’t handle him in this form. Sturridge was also very lively and scored a superb goal but was overshadowed by a magnificent Suarez.

    Lucas played a vital role in Liverpool’s midfield and snuffed out the threat of most West Brom attacks. But it was great to see Liverpool finally play well for a full 90 minutes and this win sets Liverpool up for next week’s clash with Arsenal.
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    Arsenal 2-0 Liverpool Match Report

    Liverpool suffered their second league defeat of the season as they went down 2-0 to Arsenal at the Emirates in this top of the table clash, Liverpool could have went top with a win but the loss now leaves them five points behind the Gunners.

    Goals from Cazorla and Aaron Ramsey separated the teams in a match that Arsenal won convincingly.

    The Team

    The pre-match team news confirmed that Liverpool were without the services of Glen Johnson due to illness and Jon Flanagan would deputise for the England right-back. Flanagan had not featured in Liverpool’s first team since the FA Cup tie against Mansfield back in January. Meanwhile, fit-again Philippe Coutinho was named on the substitutes’ bench.

    The eleven that started for Liverpool at the Emirates were Mignolet, Flanagan, Toure, Skrtel, Sakho, Cissokho, Lucas, Gerrard, Henderson, Sturridge and Luis Suarez.

    The Match

    The game got underway with Arsenal creating the first effort through Tomas Rosicky firing a shot across the face of goal which was palmed wide by Mignolet.

    At the other end Jordan Henderson surged into the Arsenal penalty box before miscuing his shot. Liverpool started the game positively and pressed high up the park.

    However, Arsenal took the lead in the 19th minute when Sagna burst down the right flank before crossing onto the head of Cazorla who headed onto the post before firing the rebound past Mignolet.

    Liverpool almost mustered a swift riposte, but Toure’s downward header was blocked by Szczesny, though the flag was raised for offside in any case.

    Liverpool were left frustrated when they tried to take a quick free-kick which ended up in the Arsenal net only to be brought back as the referee wanted to book Sagna for the foul.

    But Arsenal stepped up a gear after taking the lead as Liverpool tried to stay in the game and Mignolet had to react quickly to get down to save Ramsey’s drive after a one-two with Rosicky.

    Liverpool went in at the break a goal behind and Brendan Rodgers made an attacking substitution for the second half by introducing Coutinho for Cissokho.

    Liverpool went close early in the second half when Suarez raced clear behind the Arsenal defence before toe-poking off target. Then, moments later the Uruguayan found space in a dangerous position before crossing to the back post finding Henderson but the midfielder volleyed over.

    A slack pass from Toure to Skrtel was seized upon by Giroud but the striker’s chipped effort found the side netting to the relief of Brendan Rodgers.

    However, Arsenal didn’t have long to wait until they claimed their second goal, when Ramsey connected with a half-volley from 20 yards that looped over Mignolet in the 59th minute.

    Victor Moses replaced Flanagan as Liverpool tried to salvage something from the game, and they almost found a lifeline when Suarez fired in a low drive with the outside-of-the-foot but his effort struck the base of the post.

    Liverpool continued until the very end to get something from the game and Suarez should have scored in the dying moments but his side-footed effort went wide as Arsenal held on to stay top of the league.

    Summary

    Liverpool were dealt a blow with the loss of Glen Johnson before kick-off and I was surprised that Rodgers chose Flanagan to deputise in such a big game, but in fairness Flanagan had a good game and didn’t let anyone down.

    I thought Liverpool started well until Arsenal took the lead and then Arsenal were the better team and dominated the midfield. Despite Arsenal’s domination Liverpool had some really good chances and the quick free-kick being brought back was a poor decision by the referee.

    Coutinho looked sharp when he came on for the second half and became very involved in trying to bring Liverpool back into the game, unfortunately his passing was just a little off.

    Liverpool showed tremendous attitude by trying to salvage something from the game right until the final whistle but on the day they were second best to an impressive side.
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