After The Match 

            


Liverpool-Fulham 3-1 (1-1)          Sat Feb 5.                  Premier League
Goals: Morientes (8), Hyypia (63), Baros (77)       Cole (15)
Team: Dudek, Finnan, Traore, Carragher, Hyypia, Riise, Biscan, Gerrard, Garcia, Baros, Morientes
Subs: Hamann (Biscan 65), Smicer (Baros 82), Warnock (Riise 89)
Not used: Carson, Pellegrino
Yellow: Garcia         Rehman, Diop, Pembridge
Red: None
Referee: Rob Styles
Attendance: 43,534

                            MATCH-REPORTS & RESULTS 
TEAM STATS
Shots on target: 7-2
Shots off target: 3-4
Fouls conceded: 12-13
Corners: 4-3
Yellow: 1-3
Red:

 

 

0-0

HEADLINES "And I am
obviously delighted
with Morientes..."
           Rafael Benitez
0702: Radzinski tips stylish Liverpool...
0702: Hyypia: It's going to be test of nerve
0502: Rafa happy with form
0502: Coleman unhappy with Styles
0502: Reds too strong for Fulham
 

FEBRUARY 7
Radzinski tips stylish Liverpool to overhaul rivals

By David Prior - Daily Post

Tomasz Radzinski admits he doesn't want Liverpool to win the race for fourth place - but thinks they will.

The former Evertonian, now with Fulham, ironically received a less hostile reception at Anfield than he did at Goodison when the Cottagers played Everton in November.

That reflected Radzinski's spiteful departure from Everton last summer, but the striker still wishes his former team well, even if he does not believe they will deny Liverpool the final Champions League place.

He said: "The gap's only five points now and I know they've still got to play Everton here at home, so anything is possible. I'm still hoping that Everton are going to get it because I have a lot of friends there and I still hope that the Blues will edge it.

"But I think it's going to be quite difficult for them because Liverpool play good football and now with Morientes they have somebody who can score goals on a regular basis. They look like they might get it.

"They're completely different teams - I think Everton are a much more organised team than Liverpool, I think they stick to the plan. If it's going to be a 0-0 at the end of the game, Everton don't mind. That's why they've such a record for winning 1-0 in the league.

"But Liverpool play a much more attractive game to watch so it's two different ways to look at it. I prefer the way Liverpool play - more open and fluent and more for the neutral supporter."

Radzinski felt his side could have got something out of Saturday's game. He added: "When Sami (Hyypia) scored the whole game just changed, it was more difficult to get a grip on the game. We didn't have many clear-cut chances, but then neither did they - all the danger came from set-pieces."


FEBRUARY 7
Hyypia: It's going to be test of nerve

By David Prior - Daily Post

Sami Hyypia claims Merseyside's fight for fourth place will come down to a test of nerve - and insists Liverpool will catch Everton if they maintain their current standard for the remainder of the season.

The Finn's second-half header helped Liverpool to a hard-earned 3-1 victory over Fulham, with Fernando Morientes claiming his first goal at Anfield and Milan Baros sealing the win late on.

Everton's draw at Southampton yesterday ensured Liverpool are now just five points off the final Champions League place, and Hyypia confidently believes his side can overhaul their neighbours.

He said: "This result has given us an opportunity to keep the pressure on Everton and that's what we've got to carry on doing. If we play to our level every game then I'm confident we can get fourth place - we can beat anybody on our day.

"The games we have struggled in is because we haven't played to our level, but if we play to the standard that we showed against Charlton then I'm confident we can get fourth place.

"You can't afford to have any slip-ups and hopefully this is the start of something for us and we can go on a run until the end of the season.

"I don't think we played as well as we did against Charlton on Tuesday, but it's all about getting the result at the moment."

Hyypia added that Liverpool's experience in chasing fourth place over the last two seasons will stand them in good stead.

He added: "Maybe the experience that we've had before will help us.

"It may be a case of who holds their nerve the best."

Centre-back Hyypia paid glowing tribute to the difference new signing Morientes has made since signing from Real Madrid last month.

"Morientes has shown in the two games this week that he's capable of scoring totally different types of goals - a great header and a great shot," added the Finn. "That makes it so much more difficult for a defender and he can have an impact on our season."


FEBRUARY 5
Rafa happy with form

By Peter ORourke - Planet Football/Sky Sports

Liverpool boss Rafa Benitez was happy with his side as they picked up their third win on the trot after a 3-1 success over Fulham.

The victory completed a good week for Liverpool as they look to keep up their bid to win a place in next season's UEFA Champions League.

"We have been looking for a better level of performance and thankfully we seemed to have achieved that with three wins in succession," said Benitez.

"It certainly does a lot to replace the feelings we had after losing those three games in a week.

"We have needed more consistency, and I was pleased certainly with the way we controlled the second half.

"We started the game well, had a poor 20-minute spell, but deserved the points with the way we played in the second period."

Benitez also had words of praise for Fernando Morientes after the Spanish international netted his second goal for the club.

"And I am obviously delighted with Morientes," added Benitez. "We needed a good target man and he has become that for us.

"He is good in the air, passes the ball well to the wings and is starting to link well with Milan Baros.

"It was a long wait for him, but he has been worth the wait. Good players make a manager's job easier.

"And he is a good player and a good professional. Each week he improved.

"He arrived here having not played for five months and now he is training every day and regaining his match fitness."


FEBRUARY 5
Coleman unhappy with Styles

By Peter ORourke - Planet Football/Sky Sports

Fulham boss Chris Coleman was unhappy with referee Rob Styles after his side's defeat to Liverpool.

Coleman was fuming that Styles did not stop play in the build-up to Liverpool's third goal with Papa Bouba Diop suffering from a head injury.

"My players could see there was some blood and felt the referee should have stopped the game," said Coleman.

"Diop should have gone down but he was wandering around holding his head. But the point is that we should not have stopped until the referee blew his whistle.

"I was angry with all three goals that we conceded. We have 'knocked off' (fallen asleep) on all three occasions as the ball came into the box, and you can't do that at this level.

"I felt we were comfortable at times, we played well and I have certainly seen Edwin van der Sar busier than that in games."


FEBRUARY 5
Reds too strong for Fulham

By Peter ORourke - Planet Football/Sky Sports

Liverpool closed the gap on Everton with a 3-1 win over
Fulham at Anfield.


Second half goals from Sami Hyypia and Milan Baros gave The Reds all three points after Andy Cole had cancelled out Fernando Morientes' opener in the first half

Liverpool started brightly and had claims for a penalty turned down by referee Rob Styles after just four minutes when Baros went down in the box when Papa Bouba Diop appeared to pull the Czech star back.

The hosts had a lucky escape two minutes later when a corner from Mark Pembridge somehow got through a crowd of players right across the face of goal, but both Cole and Luis Boa Morte missed their shots.

Liverpool broke the deadlock on nine minutes with Morientes notching his second goal of the week and his first at Anfield.

The goal was made in Spain with Luis Garcia crossing for his compatriot Morientes who planted a brilliant header past Edwin van der Sar.

Fulham refused to be overawed by going a goal down and Lee Clark fired a shot over the crossbar from the edge of the box on 14 minutes.

The visitors drew level two minutes later, with Garcia giving the ball to Boa Morte and the Portuguese star raced down the left and crossed for Cole to send a diving header past Jerzy Dudek.

Cole almost got through on goal again on 22 minutes, but Djimi Traore got back in time to dispossess the striker.

Soon after from another Pembridge corner, Tomasz Radzinski glanced a header just wide with the Liverpool defence all at sea.

Liverpool were struggling to get behind the Fulham defence although van der Sar gave them a scare when he flapped at a cross from Steve Finnan, but to his relief no one was on hand to take advantage of the mistake.

Igor Biscan called van der Sar into the action on 36 minutes with a fierce strike from the edge of the area which the Dutchman saved at full stretch.

Liverpool came out for the second half in determined fashion and van der Sar got in a vital block to prevent Baros's cross reaching Morientes on 48 minutes.

Seconds later Zat Knight prevented a certain goal for Baros when he came from nowhere to clear the ball from the striker's feet in front of goal after John Arne Riise had headed Garcia's cross back towards Baros.

Steven Gerrard tried his luck from long range on 55 minutes with a volley just over the crossbar and a minute later Riise volleyed Baros' pinpoint cross horribly wide.

Liverpool finally got the second goal they craved on 63 minutes with Hyypia meeting Gerrard's inviting free kick with a glancing header past van der Sar.

Reds substitute Dietmar Hamman stung the hands of van der Sar on 70 minutes with a fierce strike from the edge of the area.

Liverpool made the game safe 13 minutes from time with Baros grabbing his first goal in eight games with a clinical finish from Riise's cross.

Traore denied Boa Morte pulling a goal back for Fulham three minutes later with a superb last-ditch tackle as the winger looked to tuck home Carlos Bocanegra's cross from just six yards out.

The win leaves Liverpool four points behind Everton in the race for fourth place and that final coveted UEFA Champions League place.


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Thor Zakariassen