After The Match 


Liverpool-Crewe 2- 1 (1-1)              23.9.08                        CC
Goals: Agger (15), Lucas (57)        O'Connor (25)
Team: Cavalieri, Insua, Hyypia (c), Agger, Degen, El Zhar, Plessis, Lucas, Pennant, Ngog, Babel
Subs: Torres (Ngog 66), Carragher (Degen 73), Keane (El Zhar 88)
Not used: Gulacsi, Dossena, Skrtel
Yellow: None
Red: None
Referee: M. Oliver
Attendance: 28,391
Shots on target:
Shots off target:
Blocked shots:
Fouls conceded:
HEADLINES "Every competition
is important..."
Rafael Benitez

2409: Pennant hungry for action
2309: Rafa hails goalscoring duo
2309: Holland on Anfield defeat
2309: Reds reserves edge out brave Alex 

Agger celebrates his goal with Pennant
and Lucas. (Photo: Empics)

Pennant hungry for action

By Alex Livie - Setanta Sports

Jermaine Pennant is hopeful he gave Rafa Benitez food for thought during Liverpool’s Carling Cup win over Crewe on Tuesday.

Benitez made a raft of changes for the meeting with The Railwaymen and Pennant was one of the fringe players to benefit.

He performed with credit and produced the cross for Lucas Leiva’s winning goal in the 2-1 victory.

Pennant has been frustrated by his lack of playing time this term, but is hopeful he will get further chances to impress in the weeks ahead.

"If you get your chance you have to make the most of it and when teams come to Anfield it's their cup final so it can be difficult," he told the club’s official website.

"We have got a lot of strength in the squad which is why it is so hard to get in the team so I'll keep plugging away and see what happens.

"It was nice to play a game - whether it's the Carling Cup or any game it's good to get a run out I and enjoyed every minute of it.

"It gives us another chance to play another game and if the draw is good we can go further in the competition."

Sami Hyypia was another player on the periphery given a run out and the Finn has trained his sights on Wembley.

"I haven't played at Wembley so for me personally, to go there and get a game would be great," said Hyypia.

"It was a good battle and I'm happy because maybe the League Cup is a competition in which I will play, so I'm very happy we got through to the next round and hopefully it will mean another game for me.”

Rafa hails goalscoring duo

By Joe Curran - LFC Official Website

Rafa Benitez today praised Daniel Agger and Lucas Leiva for helping the Reds book their place in the fourth round of the Carling Cup.

Agger scored with a well-struck free-kick on 15 minutes before Lucas headed in a second-half winner from close range to edge the Reds to a 2-1 victory over League One outfit Crewe Alexandra.

The visitors twice came close to equalising in the dying minutes and Benitez admitted he wanted his team to make sure of victory much earlier in the match.

"As always in these kinds of games, if you don't score the third goal and finish the game, then things can get a bit nervous," said Benitez.

"I think we had enough chances to score the third goal, but we scored two very good goals too. I thought Daniel Agger was fantastic and Lucas is a player that likes to get into the box, so he can score more goals like this.

"It was a very positive result and a very positive reaction from the players when they equalised. The only bad thing was that we couldn't score the third goal and finish the game."

Meanwhile, the Liverpool manager revealed how important he sees the League Cup and admitted that it could give the younger players a chance to shine.

"I think that we had a lot of young players today who played well," added Benitez. "Their workrate was good and the game was very quick, but they did OK today."

"Every competition is important, so we will always try to create more chances.

"We knew that they would be going forward more and leave space at the back, so we brought Fernando Torres on, who had chances to finish the game."

Holland on Anfield defeat

Crewe Alexandra FC - The Official Site

After Liverpool narrowly went through to round four of the Carling Cup, Steve Holland was left diappointed that his side didn't quite have enough to force

Right infront of the Kop, a late Tom Pope chance went begging for the Alex, but it was still a night to be proud. Liverpool win 2-1 thanks to goals from Agger and Lucas with O'Connor netting for the Railwaymen.

Steve Holland told the club's official web-site: "We pushed them all the way and I was most proud of the way the players concentrated and were organised throughout the game. It wasn't until they brought Torres on that they looked like slicing us open and we needed Steve Collis to make one or two good saves to keep us in the tie.

"I think it was an indication of how well our players performed that they brought on the likes of Torres and Robbie Keane. That shows how well we pushed them right into the end and we had that really good chance with Tom Pope going in right at the death after a good move.

"We gave away an unnecessary free kick for the first goal. I think it was a foul by Michael O'Connor but credit to Agger because it was a fantastic strike. I will have to see it again but from where I was sat it looked an unstoppable shot.

"I thought we rallied pretty well after that and scored a good goal. We had done some work on set plays and corners, because Liverpool mark in zones. We tried to get Zola away from Hyypia because they match up in terms of height and I think we got him up against Plessis. He got a flick on it and O'Connor was there to touch it in.

"The goal gave us greater confidence and I thought we had our best spell of the game afterwards. We finished the first half strongly and we were delighted with them.

"We didn't have much of the possession in the second half but there was some good counter attacks from us and we kept ourselves going.

"The supporters seemed pleased with the players efforts at the end of the game, and so they should be. Our fans were terrific behind that goal and kept us going. Tonight was about trying to win one or two of them over and I think we did that.

He added: "Now it us up to us to try and keep them with us."

Reds reserves
edge out brave Alex


Liverpool's much-changed line-up eased to a comfortable 2-1 win over plucky League One outfit Crewe in the Carling Cup third round at Anfield.

Jermaine Pennant was a constant menace on the right flank while Lucas and Daniel Agger produced assured performances to give Rafael Benitez a selection poser for Saturday's game against Everton.

Agger gave Liverpool a 15th-minute lead from a free-kick before Michael O'Connor's equaliser 10 minutes later.

Pennant supplied Liverpool's second goal with a dangerous cross which was headed home by Lucas in the 58th minute but really the margin of the victory should have been greater.

While strengthening the Reds first team for a Premier League title challenge has been Benitez's priority he is attempting to build a squad to challenge on several fronts.

The manager included only one English player - Pennant - in his starting line-up as he handed debuts to Brazilian goalkeeper Diego Cavalieri and Swiss defender Philipp Degen.

Sami Hyypia, named as captain, and Agger were recalled in central defence while there were places for Lucas, Emiliano Insua and Damien Plessis while Nabil El Zhar, Ryan Babel and David Ngog carried the attacking threat.

Crewe first-team coach Steve Holland included former Liverpool youth team defender Danny O'Donnell alongside captain Julien Baudet at the back.

Degen and Pennant linked up well down the right flank in the eighth minute to create Liverpool's first chance.

Breaking from a Crewe free-kick, Pennant slipped a clever ball to Degen on the overlap and he whipped a low cross into the penalty area but neither Ngog nor Babel were able to get a touch.

Pennant continued to provide the home side's best outlet and Crewe defender Billy Jones was lucky to escape a booking after a late challenge on the winger in the 12th minute.

Liverpool's pressure eventually paid off three minutes later after Ngog was fouled on the edge of the penalty area by O'Connor.

Denmark defender Agger took the resulting free-kick and smashed a powerful low effort past goalkeeper Steve Collis.

Crewe equalised in the 25th minute after Byron Moore's shot was deflected by Agger for a corner.

Jones crossed and Calvin Zola's header was parried by Cavalieri but O'Connor made amends for his earlier foul when he slammed home from close range.

The Railwaymen began to settle but it was Liverpool who created the next opportunity in the 41st minute.

Hyypia was picked out on the penalty spot by a Pennant corner but Collis blocked his shot and Plessis could only fire the loose ball into the crowd.

Babel went close moments after the interval when his shot from the left edge of the penalty area was deflected and wrong-footed Collis but looped on to the roof of the net.

Liverpool restored their lead in the 58th minute after good work down the right flank by the impressive Pennant.

The lively winger delivered a dangerous cross into the penalty area and Brazil midfielder Lucas timed his run superbly to direct a header past Collis.

Benitez surprisingly introduced Fernando Torres and the Spain international was immediately involved.

Pennant delivered another ball into the penalty area in the 82nd minute and Torres' header was tipped past the post by Collis.

The Crewe goalkeeper saved again from the Spaniard two minutes later after Torres had broke clear of the Crewe defence.

Liverpool were given a few late scares as Crewe pressed for an equaliser but held on to secure their place in the next round.

backbutton.gif (1697 bytes)

Thor Zakariassen ©