After The Match 


Stoke-Liverpool 2-0 (0-0)            14.11.10                           PL
Goals: Fuller (56), Jones (90)
Team: Reina, Konchesky, Carragher, Skrtel, Kyrgiakos, Lucas, Gerrard, Rodriguez, Kuyt, Meireles, Torres
Subs: Ngog (Meireles 66), Babel (Rodriguez 73)
Not used: Jones, Kelly, Shelvey, Poulsen, Jovanovic
Yellow: Torres (47), Lucas (58, 90), Skrtel (79)
Collins (54), Fuller (83)
Red: Lucas (90)
Referee: Mark Halsey
Attendance: 27,286
Shots on target: 4-3
Shots off target: 5-4
Blocked shots: 9-5
Fouls conceded: 14-11
Corners: 4-3
Offsides: 1-0
Possession: 39.7-60.3
Yellow: 2-3

a good run
has come
to an end."
Roy Hodgson
1511: Roy shutting out Dalglish chants
1411: Pulis pleased with improving Potters
1311: Roy refuses to be critical
1311: Super Stoke ruin Reds revival


Roy shutting out
Dalglish chants


Liverpool manager Roy Hodgson admits he will always face comparison to his predecessors after seeing his side's recent revival falter at Stoke.

Hodgson had to listen to Liverpool fans chanting the name of former player and manager Kenny Dalglish as goals from Ricardo Fuller and Kenwyne Jones ended a six-match unbeaten run in Saturday evening's 2-0 Premier League defeat at the Britannia Stadium.

Asked if the singing of Dalglish's name disappointed him, Hodgson said: "I suppose it does. That seems like it is going to be part of life at Liverpool.

"I think we are trying to do the best job we can in the circumstances and I don't know that that type of singing helps anyone."

Hodgson is adamant it will take time to produce consistent results with his current squad and is determined to fight on in the job he only accepted in the summer.

"If the club decide they want to give the job to somebody else, then I'll have to accept that, if that day comes," said Hodgson

"We are short of players, as everyone knows and we don't have so many options.

"The fans can chant for whoever they want and it will be up to the club to decide what they want to do.

"There is nothing I can do about it and I can only continue to do the best job I can do under these circumstances."

He added: "I can't get upset every time the fans chant someone's name and furthermore, we have millions of fans.

"Maybe the travelling fans are showing their frustration because we've lost, they are entitled to do that.

"Fans make their frustrations felt every time we lose, but unfortunately they may have to do that a few more times, because I can't see us going through a season winning every game."

Pulis pleased with
improving Potters

By Nigel Brown -

Stoke City boss Tony Pulis was delighted with his side's display in Saturday's hard-fought 2-0 victory against Liverpool.

The Potters had ended their recent losing sequence by beating Birmingham City in midweek and moved into the top half of the table after goals by Ricardo Fuller and Kenwyne Jones helped them secure their second win in five days.

Pulis exclaimed after the match: "We are very pleased. The important thing was to push up on Liverpool and stop them getting a rhythm in their passing and we really closed them down from the front.

"I am very pleased with everyone in my team. In a three-game week when you have to play a top side at the end of that week it is always very difficult.

"We showed loads of passion, commitment and energy and they deserved their victory."

Roy refuses to be critical

Sky Sports

Roy Hodgson dismissed suggestions that his players had lacked mental strength following Liverpool's 2-0 defeat to Stoke.

The Reds went into the Britannia Stadium clash on a four-match unbeaten run but came unstuck as Ricardo Fuller and Kenwyne Jones scored second-half goals for Stoke.

Lucas Leiva was sent off for a second bookable offence just before the final whistle and Hodgson was disappointed with the result.

However, he refused to be too critical of his players, saying they coped with Stoke's physicality for the most part.

"I'm sad a good run has come to an end," said the Liverpool manager.

"It was always going to be a tough task and I knew we would be hard-pushed to win that battle but I thought we dealt with the pressure reasonably well.

"Once they scored it was going to be an even further uphill battle."

Fuller's goal came after Liverpool had failed to clear a Rory Delap throw-in, which is always a key weapon for Stoke.

"The first goal I am not disappointed in the manner of it because that is the manner of most goals here and that is what you have to defend against.

"For large periods of time I thought we defended it reasonably well but they got their reward from one of those.

"It would be a very unfair accusation that we lacked the mental strength or courage, as our defending from so many of the throws and set-plays proved.

"I thought today we stood up as well as we could be expected to considering the pressure we were under.

"I don't think the players threw the towel in and never looked like throwing the towel in."

Hodgson also expressed his disappointment that some fans chose to chant the name of former player-boss Kenny Dalglish towards the end.

"I suppose it does. That seems like it is going to be part of life at Liverpool," said Hodgson.

"I think we are trying to do the best job we can in the circumstances and I don't know that that type of singing helps anyone.

"But I didn't hear it and I am sure there are lots of fans who sympathise with us and what we are trying to do."

Hodgson felt the Reds suffered in the second half because striker Fernando Torres carried on playing despite injury, although he played down the seriousness of the problem.

"He didn't want to come off and I didn't want to take him off but he was not firing on all cylinders," said the manager.

"We offered him the chance to come off but he wasn't interested in that.

"I don't think it was too serious, if it had have been I don't think he would have carried on but it was a nasty knock which he took on his ankle."

Super Stoke
ruin Reds revival


Second-half goals from Ricardo Fuller and Kenwyne Jones gave Stoke a 2-0 win over Liverpool, who finished with 10 men at the Britannia Stadium.

The Reds' six-match unbeaten run came to end as they were outfought, outplayed and outmanoeuvred by Tony Pulis' side.

Fuller opened the scoring just after half-time and Jones completed a comprehensive victory in the final minute before Lucas Leiva was sent off for a second bookable offence.

The Potters were more than worth their win against a team who appear to have lost their way as quickly as they found it.

They have won away from home only once this season and only three times since last November.

Their first 45 minutes appeared to be a direct continuation of the second half at Wigan, where they had found themselves under almost constant pressure and were lucky to come away with a draw.

Only the returning Sotirios Kyrgiakos had not played in the previous two matches so there may have been an element of fatigue, especially as Stoke played a day earlier on Tuesday.

But no team in the Premier League, let alone a club like Liverpool, can expect to use that as an excuse for an abject and disjointed first-half display.

Roy Hodgson's side appeared unprepared and unable to deal with their hosts' brash, energetic approach which allowed them to dominate the game from first to last.

Stoke were appealing unsuccessfully for a penalty in only the second minute when Maxi Rodriguez leant heavily on Ricardo Fuller as they challenged for Rory Delap's long throw.

It was a sign of things to come as the visitors found themselves being forced back, looking worrying susceptible to Delap's trademark set-piece.

Midfielder Dean Whitehead benefited from weak headed clearances to fire in a low shot which Jose Reina turned around a post and then drill a similar 30-yard effort just past the angle of upright and crossbar.

Jones and former Reds winger Jermaine Pennant also had chances before Steven Gerrard registered Liverpool's first shot in the 29th minute, forcing Asmir Begovic to tip the low effort behind, although the goalkeeper dealt more comfortably with Raul Meireles strike from the resulting corner.

It was a brief retort which was soon forgotten when Jones rounded Paul Konchesky to cross low into the six-yard box, forcing Jamie Carragher to dive in front of Matthew Etherington to prevent the opening goal.

Less than two minutes into the second half Fernando Torres, who had been anonymous previously, was booked for tackling Pennant from behind.

But the real threat was still coming from Delap and Liverpool's inability to cope with his party trick finally cost them in the 56th minute.

A scramble saw the ball break to Etherington at the far post and his cross-shot bounced back off Konchesky to Fuller, whose had his first effort blocked but stabbed home the second from close range.

Despite the stereotype, it was Stoke's first goal from a Delap party-piece in 23 league matches.

Jones almost made it two when Martin Skrtel mistimed his jump but his left-footed effort beat both Reina and the far post.

Liverpool, as they did in the first half, had two chances in quick succession with Rodriguez shooting straight at Begovic from Dirk Kuyt's cut-back and Skrtel firing wide from Kyrgiakos' knockdown of Gerrard's free-kick.

David Ngog and Ryan Babel replaced Meireles and Rodriguez but with Liverpool still unable to gain decent possession of the ball it made little difference they effectively had four strikers on the pitch.

Their embarrassment was completed in the 90th minute when Gerrard gave the ball away and Jones was able to skip past Skrtel to fire home.

The dismissal of Lucas just compounded matters.

In terms of territory and control Liverpool have now lost the last five halves they have played in.

The 45 minutes prior to that had been the electrifying first-half display against Chelsea but team now appear to be on a downward spiral again.

It is a descent Hodgson has to arrest quickly. He left the Britannia Stadium with chants of "Dalglish" - a reference to former player and manager Kenny - ringing in his ears.

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Thor Zakariassen