Liverpool: The Horror..The Horror..The Red’s season of woe continues
Manchester United 2-1 Liverpool
By Patrick McLoughin.
The horror…the horror…the immortal final words ushered by Colonel. Kurtz in Francis Ford Coppola’s epic ‘Apocalypse Now’, Kurtz has lost his mind in a world that is descending into madness around him, a feeling that surely must be shared by many associated with Liverpool FC inside Old Trafford on Sunday afternoon. Liverpool fans would have no doubt travelled to Manchester with high spirits, three wins in the last three meetings between the old foes had undeniably left bragging rights firmly on Merseyside and with a Fernando Torres goal inside five minutes Liverpool looked set to be on course for another memorable win.
However, if football has taught us anything it is this: Frank Lampard will always score from deflections, Arsene Wenger has terrible eye-sight and if there is the slightest shout for a penalty at Old Trafford you’d better believe it will be given, and that’s exactly what happened only a few minutes after Torres’ opener.
Antonio Valencia’s fall was adjudged to have been a foul by the stunned Javier Mascherano and referee Howard Webb did what he does best, awarded a penalty to Manchester United. Pepe Reina’s initial save was then converted on the rebound by Wayne Rooney and the scores were level.
The game itself was not a classic, after the goal Liverpool threatened little and did nothing worthy of winning the game, Ji-Sung Park’s header was enough to give United the points as the Red’s chances of finishing fourth get slimmer with each match.
Benitez tried to change things after the hour mark bringing on Aquilani, Benayoun and Babel but this made little difference to an otherwise toothless Liverpool front-line. Torres was once again the focal point of any offensive play but heavily marshalled by Ferdinand and Vidic all afternoon he endured another frustrating game despite his early goal, he managed to blaze a great chance over the bar minutes from time.
The game held huge significance for both teams, Liverpool looking to keep pace with the Champions League hopefuls while United needed a win to go back to the top of the table. This was not lost on either team and the pressure finally boiled over with a scuffle erupting between Dirk Kuyt and Darren Fletcher, other players were quickly involved, however Howard Webb managed to regain order.
Liverpool’s overall performance was decent, there were some neat passages of play and a well worked goal shows vast improvement from the performances against Wigan and Portsmouth early in the season. However, overall United were the better team and deserved the win. Liverpool must now pick themselves up and focus on maintaining their push for fourth place and silverware in the Europa League, a sign of how far Liverpool’s season has descended…the horror…the horror…
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