After The Match 

            


Liverpool-Juventus 2-1 (2-0)     Tue Apr 5.  Champions L (QF - 1. leg) 
Goals: Hyypia (10), Garcia (25)              Cannavaro (63)
Team: Carson, Finnan, Carragher, Hyypia, Traore, Garcia, Biscan, Gerrard, Riise, Le Tallec, Baros.
Subs: Nunez (Baros 66), Smicer (Le Tallec 73)
Not used: Dudek, Warnock, Potter, Welsh, Alonso
Yellow: Zambrotta( 89)
Red: None
Referee: Frank De Bleeckere
Attendance: 41,216

                           MATCH-REPORTS & RESULTS 
TEAM STATS
Shots on target:
Shots off target:
Fouls conceded:
Corners:
Yellow:
Red:

 

 

 

HEADLINES  "I was delighted
with our first half performance."

         Rafael Benitez
0604: Baros rues Reds slip
0604: Juve confident of recovery
0604: Italian media praise Anfield fans
0504: Rafa: We can reach the semi-final
0504: Capello satisfied with loss
0504: Liverpool took first-leg honours
 

 


APRIL 6
Baros rues Reds slip

By Vasek Kadlec - Planet Football/Sky Sports

Milan Baros believes Liverpool have only themselves to blame for allowing Juventus to score in the first leg of their UEFA Champions League encounter.

The tie remains in the balance after Fabio Cannavaro grabbed a crucial away goal for Juventus in the 2-1 defeat at Anfield.

Liverpool raced into a 2-0 lead in the opening 25 minutes thanks to goals from Sami Hyypia and Luis Garcia, but Baros believes they made a mistake by not going for more goals in the second half.

"What a pity they scored that needless goal," Baros told Czech daily Idnes.

"To win 2-0 would have been much better than to win 2-1. Anyway, it's not so bad result.

"Our chances for advancing to the next round are fifty-fifty, but it's true that Juventus have won this season almost all their home matches with a clean sheet.

"In the first half, it was still okay. We matched one another well, but with every minute it was worse and worse.

"Then we played long balls all the remaining time.

"Juventus started slowly, maybe they underestimated us a bit. They didn't play at 100% and we exploited it.

"They improved in the second half, but it was our fault.

"We thought we had only to defend the result. We should have played more offensively and scored the third goal."

Baros admitted he was disappointed to be substituted midway through the second half of the game, but understood Rafa Benitez's decision as he had been struggling with a foot injury prior to the game.

"I was sorry that the coach too me off during the match," added Baros.

"On the other hand I must say, I had only one training session last week."

Liverpool star John Arne Riise was delighted with the victory over Juventus and believes they can finish the job off in Turin next week. "This was the first step on the road to the semi-final." Riise told VG.

"It will be very tough on the road, but we know we can do it.

"I feel we played very well in the first half, I almost forgot how good Juventus are.

"The conceded goal doesn't spoil anything. We have beaten one of the best teams in the world and know that we can go through to the semi-final.

"It was a fantastic experience."


APRIL 6
Juve confident of recovery

Sporting Life

Alessandro Del Piero felt his first-half header against Liverpool should have counted, but despite the dubious offside ruling the Juventus camp came away from Anfield satisfied with the result on Tuesday night.

The Bianconeri were rocked by a 25-minute first-half spell which saw the Reds surge into a 2-0 lead, and Del Piero was left smarting after his header sailed over goalkeeper Scott Carson into the net only to be wrongly chalked off for offside.

However Fabio Cannavaro's second-half header means that the tie is finely poised, as Liverpool go into the second leg with a 2-1 advantage.

"To enter Anfield was emotional, this is a fantastic place for those who love football," Juve captain Del Piero told La Stampa.

"It's a pity because my goal should have counted, and considering what happened on the pitch the result can be considered a good one."

Head coach Fabio Capello echoed these views and insisted he is going into the return leg full of confidence following Cannavaro's crucial away goal.

"We have been unfortunate because Liverpool have scored two goals having taken just three shots on goal while we have hit the post with (Zlatan) Ibrahimovic, Del Piero had a good chance and Del Piero's goal was good but was ruled out," he said.

"I'm quite confident about the return leg. I was not surprised by Liverpool, I knew how they played.

"Which is the better team? It is hard to say, both teams are equally strong. Maybe had it finished 2-0 it would have been very difficult for us and for that reason Fabio Cannavaro's goal was very important."

Meanwhile Juve legend Michel Platini, who took part in a presentation before the match to mark the Heysel tragedy, believes his former club are firm favourites going into the return leg in Turin next Wednesday.

He said: "Juve were so-so at the start but then they grew during the game and I believe that in the return leg they will make it because they are much stronger.

"It's not a fair or just result considering the goal that was ruled out and the numerous opportunities that the Bianconeri had."


APRIL 6
Italian media praise Anfield fans

Reuters

Italy's media has praised Liverpool supporters for their tributes to the victims of the Heysel tragedy while criticising the behaviour of a section of Juventus fans at the Champions League quarter-final at Anfield.

Liverpool and Juventus met for the first time since the Heysel Stadium tragedy 20 years ago in which 39 fans, mainly Italian, were killed when a wall collapsed following crowd trouble at the European Cup final in Brussels.

A pre-game ceremony on Tuesday featured Liverpool fans taking a banner to the Juve supporters with the message "in memory and friendship".

Fans from both clubs staged a football match in the city before kickoff while there was a stirring rendition of Liverpool's anthem "You'll Never Walk Alone".

However, a section of Juventus fans turned their backs on the ceremony and whistles and boos were heard. There were also unpleasant incidents at the airport.

The Turin-based daily La Stampa headlined its report on the Heysel tributes: "At the festival of friendship, ignorance wins".

The efforts of the home club were praised but it was reported that Juve supporters had insulted the mayor of Liverpool when he greeted them at the city's airport.

"It was to be the festival of friendship, a giant eraser to rub out the sins of the English at Heysel. The tribute of Liverpool to the Juventus fans became a diplomatic incident, an enormous embarrassment and in practice, a disgrace," said the paper, adding that several Juve supporters had been arrested at the airport.

The paper also criticised the response of Juventus fans in the stadium to the Kop's raising of a card-based mural carrying the slogan 'Amicizia' (friendship).

"To the applause of the opposing fans they turned their backs and raised their middle finger. The enormous difference was there to see," reported the paper.

ECHO APOLOGY

Gazzetta dello Sport gave lengthy coverage to the Liverpool Echo's front page apology for Heysel on Tuesday and reported the efforts of Liverpool fans to "embrace" the visiting Italians.

"It was an embrace that died against a wall of indifference, which was unfortunately coloured black and white," said Gazzetta.

The paper also reported the carrying of a memorial on to the field by former Liverpool and Juventus striker Ian Rush and ex-Juve favourite Michel Platini.

"A numerous part of the 2,000 supporters from Italy, in the sector behind the goal, did not join in the spirit or the behaviour," added the paper.

Corriere dello Sport welcomed the initiative taken by Liverpool: "Anfield Road offers a message to the Juventini - Friendship".

It added the night was "one of thousands of sentiments and thousands of emotions, contrasting but certainly intense", saying the city had "done the impossible to say that Heysel was a mad bestiality".

Under the headline "Italians snub attempt to heal the wounds", the UK's Daily Mail newspaper reported there was ill-feeling when Juve fans began chanting during the minute's silence that followed the rendition of "You'll Never Walk Alone".

In a Daily Mirror column headlined "Hope for the future rises from horrors of the past", former Liverpool player Mark Lawrenson said: "Although the pain of what happened will never go away, the strength of the bond between the two clubs enabled the game to be a coming together, rather than a re-opening of old wounds".


APRIL 5
Rafa: We can reach the semi-final

By Steve Hunter - LFC Official Website

Rafael Benitez said he was delighted with the performance of his side in the first half against Juventus and believes Liverpool have a great chance of reaching the Champions League semi-final.

While admitting it was disappointing to concede an away goal Benitez said the first half performance was the level at which he wants to see his team play consistently.

Benitez said: "I was delighted with our first half performance. We scored two goals, created good chances and we did a lot of the things we have talked about.

"It's difficult to do the same and keep up that tempo all game and while I am disappointed with the goal we conceded we have confidence for the second leg.

"We now have two options for the second leg. We can win or draw and that gives us two possibilities to reach the semi-finals. I think we will score in Italy and we will go into the game with confidence."

The Liverpool manager refused to single out blame to goalkeeper Scott Carson for the goal which Juventus scored and said Jerzy Dudek was honest enough to admit he wasn't fit to start the game.

Benitez said: "I talked to Jerzy and he said he wasn't confident because he felt pain in his groin. We then felt it was much better to use a goalkeeper who was 100 per cent fit."


APRIL 5
Capello satisfied with loss

By Graeme Bailey - Planet Football/Sky Sports

Juventus coach Fabio Capello was relatively pleased with his side's display after going down 2-1 to Liverpool.

Capello was critical of his side's opening as they went 2-0 down, but he was pleased with the way they came back into the match.

"Let's say for about 30 minutes we didn't play," said Capello.

"We awarded Liverpool with two goals. For the first 30 minutes only Liverpool played.

"Then we have had few occasions and we finally started playing.

"We didn't concentrate and we didn't press as we had to.

"I can say I liked the team in the second half, because playing here isn't easy, because of the 2-0 result it's difficult. The result is quite good, and I think this match could be useful for us."

The Italian tactician felt that having the weekend off did few favours to his side.

"As I have said many times, probably not playing for a few days causes these troubles," he said.

"This was a difficult match on a difficult pitch and after a few days of not playing we had a bad approach.

"This isn't an excuse, I take my responsibilities, but in the second half we showed we can play in a good way. The physical conditions I saw leaves me with confidence for the future."


APRIL 5
Liverpool took first-leg honours

BBC Sport Online

Liverpool earned a slender advantage in their Champions League quarter-final with Juventus after Anfield had paid its repects to the Hesyel victims.

Sami Hyypia's left-foot shot put Liverpool ahead and Luis Garcia's superb strike doubled the lead.

Zlatan Ibrahimovic hit the post, while what looked a good goal by Alessandro Del Piero was ruled out for offside.

But Juve got a valuable away goal for the second leg after Scott Carson fumbled Fabio Cannavaro's header.

It was a poor mistake from the 19-year-old keeper Carson, who was playing only his third game for Liverpool.

Previously he had superbly denied Del Piero with a smart close-range save, but his later lapse in concentration may cost Liverpool dear.

That was Liverpool's only real error in a match they dominated for long spells, particularly in the first half.

Early on, Milan Baros ran Juventus ragged, ably supported by Anthony Le Tallec, and he was inches away from converting Luis Garcia's cross.

The Italians were clearly rattled, with Pavel Nedved looking as rusty as you would expect from a player returning after six weeks out.

Hyypia, however, looked anything but a player making his first appearance for four weeks.

And he certainly did not resemble a defender when he precisely volleyed into the bottom corner to give Liverpool a deserved lead.

Tenacios in the tackle - typified by the outstanding Steven Gerrard - creative and full of pace, Liverpool drove on at Juventus.

It led to confusion replacing Juve's competence in their usually impenetrable defence.

And Garcia took full advantage after Liverpool worked the ball sweetly down the right and smashed the ball into the top corner.

At that stage it looked as though Liverpool might romp to victory, but Juve showed why they are considered favourites for the competition.

Ibrahimovic, anonymous until now, swivelled on the edge of the area and unleashed a snap shot that cannoned back off the upright.

The warning signs were there and Liverpool were lucky when the offside flag greeted Del Piero's headed 'goal' soon after.

After the break, Juventus brought on Gianluca Pessotto for Manuele Blasi, hoping to gain on a grip on the midfield.

It added some steel to their formation and it did not take long for Liverpool's considerable effort in the opening 45 minutes to tell on their energy reserves.

Perhaps sensing that, Juventus replaced Del Piero with French striker David Trezeguet.

But the best Juve could manage with their greater share of possession were long range shots.

Until, on 63 minutes, Gianluca Zambrotta delivered the cross that could prove crucial to the outcome of the tie.


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Thor Zakariassen