After The Match 


TOTTENHAM-LIVERPOOL 2-1 (1-0)      Saturday Jan 17.    Premier League
Goals: Kewell (74)       Keane (23 pen.), Postiga (54)
Team: Jones, Traore, Henchoz, Hyypia, Hamann, Kewell, Murphy, Biscan, Cheyrou, Heskey, Owen
Subs: Riise (Traore 59), Finnan (Biscan 66)
Not used: Dudek, Le Tallec, Carragher
Yellow: Hamann (61)           Carr (64)
Red: None
Referee: Uriah Rennie
Attendance: 36.104

                                                             FIXTURES & RESULTS
On target: 3-4
Off target: 4-6
Fouls: 18-9
Corne:rs 5-6
Yellow: 1-1





"...that was not
a performance
we are proud of..."

               Gerard Houllier

1701: Houllier: Doherty handled deliberately
1701: Liverpool slip up at Spurs


Houllier: Doherty handled deliberately


Gerard Houllier accused Tottenham's Gary Doherty of deliberate handball after seeing his Liverpool team beaten 2-1 at White Hart Lane.

Michael Owen screamed for a penalty in the final minute, claiming Doherty had handled, but referee Uriah Rennie instead awarded a corner.

"The referee got it wrong because Doherty stretched out his hand and stopped the ball going through for Owen to possibly equalise," said Reds boss Houllier.

"Deliberate hand ball in the box is a penalty. My players said that he did deliberate, and that is where we could have got something out of the game.

"I told the referee, without animosity, and he'll see it on television tonight, but what is that going to change?"

Houllier had no complaints about the penalty decision which went in Tottenham's favour after 23 minutes which allowed Robbie Keane to fire his team ahead from the spot, after he had been tripped by Igor Biscan.

It was Biscan again who made the mistake after 53 minutes which allowed Helder Postiga to steer home his first Premiership goal. Harry Kewell pulled one back after 74 minutes but Liverpool's hopes of rescuing a point went when the handball decision went against them.

In Tottenham's defence, they would have felt hard done by had they not held on for all three points, and Houllier admitted: "We could have done better, that was not a performance we are proud of and we lacked a bit of fluency."

Tottenham's acting boss David Pleat praised his team's "spoiling" tactics and said he had been worried before the game about the height in the Liverpool team.

"I looked at the height in the Liverpool team and it was daunting," said Pleat. "We were missing three of our taller players - Fredi Kanoute, Gus Poyet and Ledley King - and it was a massive headache worrying how we would pick up their giants.

"They won every header in midfield but we showed terrific character, attitude and determination and with a bit of spoiling we came out on top.

"Our central defenders, Doherty and Anthony Gardner, were fantastic and I told them that when the go to bed tonight they should think of each other.

"They are Nationwide players who have come in and done a terrific job because that is the way we are building, and I wish more managers would give players like that a chance."

Pleat reserved the final word for Postiga, who finally broke his Premiership duck, and added: "He took his opportunity today, his football was good and his workrate was excellent."

Liverpool slip up at Spurs

BBC Sport Online

Liverpool sank to their first defeat of 2004 as Helder Postiga scored his first Premiership goal for Spurs.

The Portuguese striker guided the ball home soon after the restart to give Spurs a two-goal cushion.

Spurs had taken the lead in the first-half through Robbie Keane, who powered a penalty home after the Irishman was fouled by Igor Biscan.

Harry Kewell's dynamic shot and run pulled a goal back for Liverpool.

Before that Liverpool's best chance had fallen to Michael Owen, playing his 200th Premiership game, as he flashed a 20-yard volley just wide after Emile Heskey nodded on a Paul Jones' clearance early in the game.

Owen set Liverpool on the attack again after 20 minutes with a neat turn inside Gary Doherty and Darren Anderton before feeding Kewell on the right, but Doherty recovered well to cut out the return pass.

With Frederic Kanoute away on international duty with Mali, Postiga was making the most of another opportunity to impress manager David Pleat.

The Portuguese striker cut inside Stephane Henchoz and hit a low drive which Jones blocked on his six-yard line.

Liverpool won their first corner after 21 minutes and Kewell's cross was deflected off the head of Biscan before looping into the arms of Kasey Keller.

Biscan was soon in the thick of action again, but for all the wrong reasons as he gave away the penalty.

Keane wriggled his way into the penalty area and Biscan clipped the Spurs striker's heels.

The Republic of Ireland international picked himself and dusted himself down to drive the ball into the corner.

Liverpool rallied and won a free-kick after 34 minutes when Michael Brown fouled Kewell on the visitors' box.

The Australian curled the cross towards Heskey, but it was just too high for him to get a header on target.

Liverpool were on the ascendancy, winning two corners on their right, but Keller cleared the first and Steve Carr the second.

Spurs were forced to make a change at the interval as Stephane Dalmat picked up a knock and was replaced by Johnnie Jackson.

The young midfielder did not take long to make his mark slipping an intelligent pass through to Postiga, who steered the ball past Jones.

On 75 minutes Kewell gave Liverpool a glimmer of hope with a superb individualistic goal, running with the ball, before guiding his shot past Keller.

Late in the game Owen claimed a penalty, arguing Doherty had handled the ball.

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Thor Zakariassen