Saturday, 31 December 2011



With the games coming thick and fast at this busy time of the year Liverpool were next to face a Newcastle side at Anfield who have had a great start to the season, but have started to struggle a bit in recent times. Liverpool went into the match trying to sort out their home form having drawn far too many for Dalglish’s liken. An added interest in this fixture is former Newcastle favourites’ Enrique and Andy Carroll facing their old team.

                                 THE TEAM

Kenny made two changes to the side that drew with Blackburn on Boxing Day, with Bellamy and Spearing coming in for Maxi and the suspended Suarez. So all eyes were on Andy Carroll in the absence of Luis Suarez to find his goal scoring form against his old team. The defence was unchanged leaving Carragher once again on the bench with Adam and Spearing in the middle of midfield and Bellamy on the left and Downing playing once again on the right. Gerrard started on the bench as he looks to get his match fit.

                                THE MATCH

Liverpool started on the offensive and Adam miscued an early chance in the first couple of minutes. Then Agger made a surging run from defence only to drag his shot five yards wide. Liverpool kept up the pressure and Downing had the next chance with a near post drive but Krul was equal to it.

But Liverpool was stunned in the 25th minute when Taylor sent in a dangerous cross which was flicked on by Cabaye only to be diverted past Reina via Agger’s arm. It was a real shock to the home side who had been on the attack for most of the half.

But Liverpool responded quickly and drew level just 4 minutes later when Bellamy fired in a low drive after good work from Adam. The home side continued to press and Martin Skrtel almost made it two but he headed just wide from a corner.

The second half started with Liverpool struggling to get possession as Newcastle found their passing game. There was a feeling inside Anfield that this could be another one of these games that would end up in a draw.  Dalglish brought on Gerrard with half an hour to go and he lifted the whole stadium. Suddenly Gerrard was orchestrating Liverpool. Gerrard sent over a superb cross from the right but Carroll just failed to connect and then Gerrard found Carroll inside the box with a superb pass but the big striker’s control let him down when clean through.

Then in the 67th minute Liverpool were awarded a free-kick 25 yards out, Bellamy’s shot flew past Krul thanks to Carroll making a nuisance of himself in front of Krul, cofusing Simpson and Krul. There was relief all around Anfield. But Newcastle almost equalised when Ba got behind the Liverpool defence, but his clipped effort was brilliantly cleared off the goal line by Skrtel who ended up in the net.

Next Gerrard whipped in a dangerous cross which Carroll headed off the crossbar, but Liverpool got their deserved third goal when a good move ended up with Gerrard bursting into the left side of the penalty area before slotting the ball underneath Krul from a tight angle sending the crowd wild in celebration. Liverpool saw out the rest of the match comfortably giving them a much needed home win.


Great to see Bellamy come back into the side with Carroll up front in the absence of Suarez. I was very worried when we fell behind to a freakish goal as we were struggling to create many chances. Bellamy was superb and took his goals superbly. Jay Spearing was superb and lucky to have both legs intact after being on the end of a horrific tackle. But I felt this is the fewest chances we have created in a match and yet we scored three goals which is very pleasing. But the turning point was the introduction of Gerrard who produced so many quality crosses and passes and what a goal. Great credit to Skrtel who produced an amazing clearance off the line. Great to see us get a much needed win at home.

Man Of The Match – Bellamy – scored 2 goals and was dangerous all night, great energy and pace shown.

Thursday, 1 December 2011



Liverpool’s recent tough fixture list continued with another trip to Stamford Bridge in less than a fortnight and only 50 hours after playing against Manchester City in a 1-1 draw. So as Liverpool continue in their quest to reach the new Wembley they are not going the easy route to get there with another away trip in this quarter final clash. But Liverpool go into the match with confidence high on a 10 match unbeaten run and buoyed by their recent defeat of their opponents just over a week ago.

                       THE TEAM

Dalglish made 7 changes to the team that faced Manchester City on Sunday with Bellamy, Carragher, Coates, Kelly, Spearing, Maxi and Carroll returning to the side. Enrique, Reina, Lucas and Henderson being the only players that started on Sunday. Former Liverpool favourite Torres started for Chelsea.

                   THE MATCH

Liverpool had an early scare when Luiz was upended by a challenge from Coates inside the penalty area, but referee Phil Dowd showed a yellow card to the Chelsea defender for diving. At the other end Andy Carroll fell under a challenge from David Luiz but again no penalty was awarded.

The game was turning out to be a very tight affair with not many chances in a keenly fought midfield battle. Then in the 22nd minute Alex handled an Enrique cross giving Liverpool a penalty and a great chance to take the lead. Andy Carroll took the spot kick straight down the middle but it was well saved by goalkeeper Ross Turnbull.

Not many chances were created during the rest of the first half as the midfield battle raged on, but Chelsea almost scored in stoppage time but Lukaku  headed just wide from a Bosingwa cross.

Liverpool started the second half brightly and were looking dangerous on the counter attack. Bellamy curled an effort just over in one of these dangerous attacks.  Chelsea almost took the lead in the 55th minute when a Ramires looping header came off the crossbar, Coates cleared off the goal line as Luiz looked to pounce.

Then Liverpool took the lead in the 58th minute when Henderson’s defence splitting pass sent Bellamy racing down the right and his low pass left Maxi with the simple task of tapping into the goal from close range sending the visiting supporters wild in celebration.

Just 4 minutes later Liverpool doubled their lead when a dangerous Bellamy free-kick was headed into the net by Martin Kelly who found himself unmarked in the penalty area. It was Kelly’s first goal for Liverpool and what an important one.

Chelsea seemed disheartened after this second goal and they struggled to respond as Liverpool were rarely threatened by the Chelsea attacks. A Torres header which was well saved by Reina and a chance for substitute Anelka were the best of their chances as Liverpool cruised into the semi-final of the Carling Cup. The only bad news of the night was the injury to Lucas who was stretchered off with 20 minutes remaining.


A superb performance by Liverpool, especially with so many changes to the side which could have made it difficult with so many players not featuring in the first team often this season. Liverpool did get lucky at the start when Chelsea were denied a stone wall penalty when Coates brought down Luiz. I thought we had missed our chance when Carroll missed the penalty, so it was great to see the miss not affect the players. The defence played superbly with Carragher and Coates immense after that early slip. Kelly was superb down the right and great to see him get his first goal for the club. Spearing and Henderson and Lucas worked their socks off in midfield, but sorry to see Lucas being stretchered off in what looks a bad injury. Bellamy was very lively and caused the Chelsea defence all sorts of problems. Andy Carroll never let his penalty miss get to him as he never hid and worked so hard for the team. A great result for Liverpool with a semi-final to look forward to in the new year against Manchester City.

Monday, 28 November 2011



The fixtures don’t come any tougher than playing against pace setters Manchester City. City remain unbeaten so far this season going into this match and have been scoring goals for fun in the league. But Liverpool was on a decent run of form too, remaining unbeaten in nine games, and with a superb victory last time out last Sunday at Chelsea.

                                THE TEAM

Kenny made two changes from the team that won at Chelsea last Sunday with Downing and Henderson coming back into the side at the expense of Bellamy and Maxi. Bellamy was left out due to the tragic news earlier in the day of the death of his friend and international manager Gary Speed. Maxi was just unlucky to be left out especially after scoring at Chelsea.

                               THE MATCH

This eagerly awaited clash was paled into comparison by the tragic news of the death of the much liked and respected Welsh manager Gary Speed who died earlier in the day at the age of 42. A minutes silence was observed before kick-off in respect of the very talented manager, and also for the passing of Liverpool’s reserve goalkeeper Brad Jones’s son who died last weekend at the age of 5 after losing his battle with leukaemia.

Once the football got started it was City who started the livelier side and in the 6th minute Richards shot over after a good turn. But then Kompany was booked for a late challenge on Suarez as the City defender let Suarez know that he was in for a tough afternoon.

A slack back pass by Enrique almost cost Liverpool dear as Aguero raced clear only to be thwarted by the alert Reina as he came racing out of his box to block the striker.

But then the visitors took the lead in the 31st minute when Kompany headed a Silva corner just inside Reina’s far post followed by wild celebrations at the away supporters section of the ground. But their celebrations were short lived when within a minute Adam tried his luck from 30 yards only to see his effort deflect off Lescott and into the net with Hart wrong footed.

This goal galvanised the home side and Adam almost gave them the lead but for a great save from the right foot of Hart as he looked to be going the wrong way. Glen Johnson saw a curling effort just miss the far post as Liverpool looked for a second goal. But City almost scored right on the half-time whistle with a lightning break which ended with Reina making a good save at his near post.

Liverpool started the second half on the front foot and Kuyt was unlucky with a header from a deflected Downing cross. Mancini brought on Balotelli for Nasri as he saw his side starting to struggle, but it was Liverpool who continued to threaten and Hart had to make another terrific save from a bouncing Downing effort. Then Lescott just managed to clear from Kuyt during a goal line scramble.

City were reduced to 10 men for the last 10 minutes when substitute Balotelli saw a second yellow after appearing to elbow Skrtel. Dalglish responded by bringing on Carroll for the remaining minutes as he looked for the win. But City almost stole a winner but for good goalkeeping from Reina allowing defenders to get back on the line to clear the danger through Skrtel.

But then in stoppage time Carroll produced a powerful header which looked goal bound only to thwarted by Joe Hart at full stretch, the rebound fell to Suarez who’s shot was superbly saved again by Hart at his near post, the follow up effort from Downing was blazed over, and City held on for a point in their toughest test so far in the league.


A superb match by two heavyweights, it was a pity but very understandable that Bellamy was left out for this one, and I believe Downing was brought in for Maxi because Downing has a bit more pace to thwart the danger of Richards marauding forward. City started well and had us under pressure in the early stages and I thought Reina was a bit fortunate when he blocked Aguero after Enrique’s poor pass, it looked like the ball struck his arm. It was great to see us respond so quickly from going behind although it was rather fortunate the way we equalised. But as the game wore on the stronger we got and Adam and Lucas were superb once again, with our defence handling the quality of the City attacking threat very well. Agger and Skrtel played superbly, with Reina making some vital saves. Johnson was a threat going forward and Enrique and Downing linked up to great effect down the left. Kuyt worked his socks off as per usual but Suarez was left a bit isolated at times and given some rough treatment. I was a bit disappointed with Henderson, the game seemed to pass him by. We were a bit unlucky not to win the match as we had the better chances, but I would have taken a draw before the match and I was proud of the performance against a very strong City side.

Man Of The Match – Lucas – his best game yet, he was everywhere, breaking up City attacks, starting attacks, his passing was superb, never gave a ball away and covered every blade of grass.

Wednesday, 23 November 2011


                                    ANFIELD NEWS 22/11/11

great performance by the reserves yesterday, great to see Sprearing, Flanagan, Coates and Wilson playing. A great result winning 5-1 against Sunderland after losing last week by the same score to Sporting Lisbon.

TISSUE samples were taken from Hillsborough tragedy victims without their families’ knowledge.

Ten families received letters warning them about discoveries surrounding the death of their loved one.

The fragments are what are known as “blocks” or “slides” and were taken at post mortem examinations to establish cause of death.

Today the practice would be illegal – but it was not at the time.
This is just the start of the truth coming out.

The youngsters will play Swansea in the FA Youth Cup on the 7th of December.

Lucas says he wants a Chelsea repeat. So do all of us.

Liverpool have confirmed that they will take Gustav Engvall on a trial period at the club, as Kenny Dalglish continues to put into a place a system based around building young players at Anfield.

At just 15 years old, Engvall has starred for Swedish division three side Färjestadens GoIF, and has represented his country at an Under 15 level.

Great to see us looking to the future.

Monday, 21 November 2011



With Liverpool stuttering with draws at home and Chelsea’s recent poor form, this match was vital for both teams to get a positive result so they keep in touch with the leading group. Liverpool have had good results against Chelsea in recent years and they managed to do the double over them last season. Dalglish is unbeaten as manager against Chelsea so confidence was good going into the match.

                           THE TEAM

Kenny made three changes to his side with Bellamy, Kuyt and Maxi making his first league start of the season, Andy Carroll had to settle for a place on the bench alongside summer signings Downing and Jordan Henderson, the fit again Jamie Carragher was also named as a substitute. Former Liverpool favourites Meireles and Torres were also named as substitutes for Chelsea.

                               THE MATCH

Liverpool started on the attack with Maxi making two good early runs. Chelsea reacted with Mata volleying dangerously across goal. Then Mikel fired over from 25 yards.

Liverpool were looking dangerous on the attack and Bellamy combined well with Suarez but Cech thwarted them. Drogba looked to have scored from a free-kick but the ball rippled the net from behind.

The next chance came when Kuyt dispossessed Terry before Suarez failed to find Bellamy and Maxi at the back post. But then in the 34th minute Liverpool broke the deadlock when Adam dispossessed Mikel before Bellamy took over, executing a one-two with Suarez before finding Maxi on the edge of the 6 yard box who finished clinically before celebrating in front of the jubilant travelling support.

Liverpool almost made it two when Lucas sent Suarez clear but his attempted cross deflected off Luiz into the side netting.

Liverpool maybe felt they should have had more than a one goal lead after their superb first half performance. Chelsea made one change at the break with Sturridge replacing Mikel.

Chelsea started the second half with intent and Drogba saw an effort bend over. Then Mata danced into the box before Skrtel ushered away the danger. But the game had changed and Liverpool were struggling to get forward now and Chelsea got their reward with the equaliser when Sturridge beat Reina from close range from a scuffed Malouda shot.

Seconds later Reina pulled off the save of the match from a glancing header by Ivanovic. Dalglish brought on Henderson for Bellamy as he tried to strengthen the midfield that was starting to struggle to stem the Chelsea tide.

The change did seem to make a difference although Liverpool  were still not threatening the Chelsea goal. Malouda had a great chance in the 75th minute but he volleyed wide from close range. Then a great run down the right by Henderson ended up with Kuyt firing just wide.

Just as it looked like the match would end a draw, Adam sprayed a pass out to the right to Johnson who skinned Cole before racing into the penalty area and then superbly slotted a left foot shot past the helpless Cech. Liverpool held out for the remaining minutes to record an important win.


Surprised to see Maxi  come back into the side, but what a masterstroke, with the Argentine scoring the first goal. I was also pleased to see Bellamy and Kuyt start the match with their work rate and pace. Liverpool played superb especially in the first half with their pressing game and the way the team continued to work for each other when under pressure in the second half was tremendous. The defence was resilient and Lucas and Adam combined brilliantly in the midfield with Kuyt tireless as ever and Bellamy was always a threat and was brilliant at the first goal. Suarez caused the Chelsea defence all sorts of problems, but overall it was a great team performance and a deserved victory.

 Man Of The Match – Adam – best performance this season, passed superbly and worked his socks off, played a crucial part in both goals.

Friday, 18 November 2011



Luis Suarez has been a terrific signing for Liverpool, what an impact he’s had. The supporters love him, Torres and the absent Gerrard have been virtually forgotten about.

I remember the great sense of loss and despair I felt when the news broke of Torres leaving us, although I knew Suarez was coming to us I was so gutted to think that no player could replace Torres. How wrong I was, Suarez has lit up Anfield so many times with his mesmerising skills and his never stop running work ethic.

OK so far he has not been as clinical in front of goal as Torres but he has brought so much more to the team that the supporters appreciate.

The first I knew of him was in the last World Cup where I thought he was a real pest of a player, constantly niggling away at defenders but with great ability, and I was left hoping that somehow we could sign him and I was so pleased when we did as I thought there would be so much competition for his signature.

Suarez is one of those types of players that you love if he is in your team but you would hate him if he is playing against you, a bit like what I thought about Paul Ince. Suarez is loved at Liverpool but already he is being victimised by other teams and even referees.

We have had people making comments about him after matches which is going against him and giving him an unfair reputation, like when Paul Scharner commented on him going down too easy after our win against West Brom, when the following week he got no protection from the referee at home to Norwich when he was kicked all over the park.

But the start of the conspiracy came from who else but Sir Alex when he spoke about Suarez diving all over the place, after our 1-1 draw against United, and I’m sure he was the instigator in making Evra accuse Suarez of racial abuse.

The FA are now charging Suarez and he could now find himself with at least a 6 match ban that would hurt us deeply. In my view its Sir Alex and his fear of Liverpool’s resurgence that has brought him to delve deep into his large book of “dirty tricks” which has made him so “great” and well respected over the years.

The FA also backing his team once again, with the charge against Suarez, where little, or no evidence to back up the claim. It will be interesting to see if the England Captain receives the same punishment, I think not, the FA will show hypocracy and racism by hammering a foreigner and let the Englishman off the hook.

I just hope that Suarez is not driven out of our club through this “witch hunt” that could drive him from our shores as he must have a strong feeling of injustice and believe he is being victimised for doing nothing more than giving his all in every game.

Luis Suarez you have the backing of all the Liverpool supporters, we just can’t get enough.