Peter Crouch celebrates the winner goal in France.
Crouch sets sights on success
By Derek Brookman - uefa.com
For the second UEFA Champions League match running, Peter
Crouch was the decisive factor for Liverpool FC. Scorer of
the game's only goal against FC Girondins de Bordeaux on
Wednesday, his contribution was once again instrumental in
keeping the five-time European Champion Clubs' Cup winners
on course for another serious attempt at scaling the
pinnacle of continental club football.
Going all the way
"Of course we believe we can go all the way again," the
England striker told uefa.com. "I think we have more
strength in depth than when we won it last time, and with a
little bit of luck I'm sure we can be serious contenders."
His team's Group C victory at the Stade Chaban-Delmas was
anything but fortunate, founded as it was on solid defending
and making the most of dead-ball situations.
"The manager is always emphasising how important set-pieces
are and we practise them a lot," said Crouch, voted Man of
the Match by uefa.com users. "Often it makes the difference
between winning and losing a game, as we saw this evening."
Craig Bellamy, who took the corner that led to Crouch's
goal, was understandably pleased with his side's
performance. He said: "We did exactly what we had to. And
now a win from either of our two upcoming home games will
see us through."
'More to come'
Wales captain Bellamy played down the significance of his
understanding with Crouch, saying: "The manager has plenty
of options up front and I just have to do my best with
whoever I am paired with." Crouch was more forthcoming,
saying: "Craig deserves a special mention. He worked
incredibly hard tonight and his pace is always an asset.
Hopefully there's more to come from our partnership."
With PSV Eindhoven recording an excellent win against
Galatasaray SK in Istanbul, Crouch also acknowledged the
significance of the looming clash with the Dutch champions
on Matchday 5. The 25-year-old said: "That looks like being
the big one, and we're determined to finish top of the
group. With the game being at Anfield, I'm sure we'll get
the right result." And with Crouch scoring so freely, who
would bet against his prediction coming true?
By Paul Eaton - LFC Official Website
Bordeaux boss Ricardo Gomes praised Liverpool's defensive
resilience as he watched his side's chances of qualifiying
for the next stage of the Champions League all but disappear
Gomes believes his side had enough possession to take
something from the game, but their failure to breach the
Reds' back-line ultimately cost them dear.
Bordeaux now lie at the foot of Group C with one point from
three games and their coach admitted: "Our task has become
very, very difficult. A hard task, but it is not toally over
because football can change. But at this stage we know how
tough it will be to qualify.
"We did things really well for long spells, but we just
could not get through Liverpool's defence," he said.
"We played well, certainly better than against PSV, but the
last 20 metres is tough, Liverpool took advantage of our
failure to cause them problems and get in shots. They scored
when it mattered.
"It is difficult to get at Liverpool, a difficult team to
cause problems against and hard to destabalise their defence
despite the amount of pressure we had and the crosses we got
into their box.
"Micoud could not find space in the midfield to work against
a very tough Liverpool midfield."
with away success
By Paul Eaton - LFC Official Website
Rafael Benitez reflected on his side's first away victory
of the season and admitted: "That will be a big boost for
the confidence of the players."
Peter Crouch's second half header was enough to secure all
three points as Liverpool consolidated their position at the
top of Group C with a deserved
1-0 success in Bordeaux.
The Reds stay ahead of PSV Eindhoven in the group standings
with both teams on seven points and well clear of
Galatasaray and Bordeaux who each have one point apiece.
"It's a good win for the confidence and a big boost for the
players," said a delighted Liverpool manager.
"The lads worked really hard tonight, scored a good goal and
could have scored others.
"We also kept a clean sheet which was good for us. It was a
pity we didn't add a second goal because that would have
made the difference between a comfortable end and a nervous
end to the game where we had some problems.
"We go to Man United at the weekend now with more confidence
and hopefully with more players because Dirk and Momo came
on tonight and we also hope Steven Gerrard will be fit."
end away day blues
By Rob Lancaster - Sky Sports
Peter Crouch continued to enjoy himself in the UEFA
Champions League as Liverpool recorded a 1-0 win over
The striker rose highest to head home Craig Bellamy's cross
shortly before the hour and claim his fourth goal in Europe
It was enough to clinch a first away success of the campaign
and should boost spirits ahead of Sunday's trip to
As for Bordeaux, there is little to raise a glass about in
the wine capital of the world as they again failed to find
the net in this season's competition.
Johan Micoud had the hosts' best opportunity in the first 45
minutes, the midfielder somehow failing to get a touch on
Wendel's free-kick when any contact would have resulted in
an opening goal.
Substitute Marouane Chamakh also came close to grabbing an
equaliser with a header, but his flick went just wide with
Jose Reina rooted to the spot.
However, the former Premiership pairing of Lilian Laslandes
and Jean Claude Darcheville posed little threat against a
Liverpool defence starting to look like it has returned to
its mean ways of last year.
With the home side using a patient approach in possession,
The Reds were able to create chances of their own on the
Crouch should certainly have broken the deadlock from Craig
Bellamy's cross but he was only able to steer the ball wide
of the left upright.
The England international did manage to work Ulrich Rame in
the home goal just before the break, though his weak
right-footed effort from a tight angle did not do his
excellent first touch justice.
However, it proved to be third time lucky for the lanky
striker when he managed to head home a Craig Bellamy corner.
Crouch's goal, which came after Rame had turned aside Luis
Garcia's left-footed drive, was his final contribution as
made way for Dirk Kuyt.
It was another substitute in Stephen Warnock who had the
best chance to seal the game but he shot weakly at Rame
after working himself in on goal.
The miss did not prove costly, though, as one goal proved
enough for Liverpool, who now top Group C with seven points
from three outings.