in handball admission
By Paul Eaton - LFC Official Website
Didier Deschamps admitted his side enjoyed a taste of
fortune against Liverpool last night.
Deschamps' Monaco side stole the points thanks to Javier
Saviola's second half strike, although the goal should
have been disallowed after the Argentinian striker
controlled the ball with his hand to create the shooting
The result means three teams from Group A still have a
chance of qualifying for the last 16 - with Liverpool
needing a two goal victory over Olympiacos in two weeks
time to guarantee their progress.
"I have now seen the incident on TV and yes, it was
handball," said Deschamps. "I could not see the hand
ball at the time from where I was sitting, but I was
very aware that the Liverpool bench were protesting. But
the referee did not see it their way which was good
fortune for us.
"This was an important win for us, and it was certainly
not easy. Liverpool are a very well disciplined side.
"But we played well and the victory is very important
for us. But we still believe we have to win in Spain in
our last match against Deportivo, and that will also not
be easy for us. But we are confident we can do it and we
have the spirit in our team to achieve our goal.
"The situation is very complicated now, with three teams
still able to qualify. But we must not be frightened of
the situation and just go to Spain with the right
attitude. But we are more than aware that everything is
as Liverpool slump
BBC Sport Online
Liverpool manager Rafael Benitez was angry with
referee Claus Bo Larsen after the damaging 1-0 defeat
against Monaco in the Champions League.
They now need to beat Olympiacos at Anfield to reach the
knockout phase, but Benitez claimed Javier Saviola
handled before scoring the winner.
He said: "Everybody around the world could see it was a
"The referee said to my players that he had seen it. But
afterwards he was smiling and I do not know why."
Benitez said: "It was a bad game on a bad pitch and to
lose to a handball makes things very difficult.
"The referee said the hand was close to the body, but
everyone could see it was handball. When my staff went
to see him afterwards to talk to him he was smiling, I
do not understand that.
"When you see a referee in the right place and he still
does not give the handball, and the linesman is also in
the right spot and it is not given.
"I don't think we need video evidence but it is
important to have a referee with a clear conscience.
"We have four referees now around the pitch, but
somebody has to say something.
"When my players tried to talk to him afterwards he was
just smiling at them, I just do not understand that."
Liverpool misery was increased with Luis Garcia ruled
out for three weeks with a hamstring injury he sustained
after only two minutes.
And defender Josemi was also taken off and required 20
stitches in a head wound suffered in an accidental
collision with Patrice Evra.
BBC Sport Online
Liverpool's hopes of reaching the last 16 suffered a
blow after they were narrowly beaten by Monaco.
Monaco took the lead early in the second-half after
Javier Saviola struck home a low shot, though he
appeared to handle just before shooting.
Steven Gerrard twice tested Monaco goalkeeper Flavio
Roma, who also saved well from a Sami Hyypia header late
But with striker Neil Mellor playing his first European
game, Liverpool were badly short of ideas in attack.
Saviola was Monaco's most dangerous player, though in
the opening half he had been well shackled by Liverpool.
Monaco struggled to find any rhythm to their passing for
long periods of the game, but the move leading up to the
goal, involving Jaroslav Plasil and Shabani Nonda,
showed the Ligue 1 side at their best.
Even so Traore's tackle on Nonda looked to taken the
sting out of the Monaco attack, but the ball broke to
Saviola, who whipped a shot past Chris Kirkland.
As Liverpool searched for an equaliser Kirkland was
pressed into action more and more and he made a quick
reaction save from Pontus Farnerud and then rushed out
to deny Emmanuel Adebayor.
Deprived of Milan Baros, Liverpool manager Rafael
Benitez had left Xabi Alonso and Harry Kewell on the
bench, opting to play Mellor up front as a lone striker.
Luis Garcia played wide on the right but the former
Barcelona player pulled up after only three minutes and
was stretchered off with a hamstring injury, to be
replaced by Josemi.
Just past the hour Josemi himself had to go off after he
was involved in a bone juddering clash of heads with
On a bobbly surface Liverpool initially tried to isolate
the Monaco left-back Douglas Maicon, who was put under
pressure at every opportunity by John Arne Riise.
On the same flank Saviola looked to do the same to
Twice Saviola looked to have got away from Traore, but
the Liverpool defender recovered superbly.
After a corner Saviola did manage to get a shot in,
which Jamie Carragher showed good judgment in letting
the ball run past him and out of play.
Carragher also made two important interceptions to take
the ball away from Nonda as Monaco threatened just
before the interval.
Liverpool's best chance in that scrappy first-half fell
to Igor Biscan from a long throw, but the Croatian
sliced a difficult bouncing ball wide.
With Olympiakos beating Deportivo la Coruna, Liverpool
must beat the Greek side by more than one goal when they
meet at Anfield on 8 December.