After The Match 


LIVERPOOL-TOTTENHAM  0-0         Wednesday Aug 27    Premier League
Team: Dudek, Finnan, Biscan, Hyypia, Carragher, Diouf, Gerrard, Kewell, Smicer, Baros, Owen
Subs: Murphy (Smicer 70)
Not used: Kirkland, Diao, Riise, Le Tallec
Yellow: Diouf, Finnan          King, Richards, Carr, Redknapp, Gardner
Red: None
Referee: Uriah Rennie
Attendance: 43.778

                                                            FIXTURES & RESULTS
On target: 10-4
Off target: 12-5
Fouls: 20-27
Corne:rs 8-5
Yellow: 2-5
Red: 0-0





...that was the best Liverpool performance
of the season...

                Gerard Houllier

2808: Misery mounting for Reds
2708: Houllier insists goals will come
2708: Hoddle delighted with a point
2708: Spurs frustrate Liverpool

Misery mounting for Reds

By Paul Walker - PA Sport

Steven Gerrard identified Liverpool's growing misery, despite a whole new attacking style, that still leaves them without a victory this season and facing their worst league start for over 90 years.

The 0-0 draw with Tottenham at Anfield means this is the worst start under boss Gerard Houllier and their worst opening three games points tally since the 1997-98 season when they ended up finishing third.

Two points from three games leaves them languishing seven points adrift of top dogs Arsenal, and with the little matter of a Mersey derby at Everton on Saturday.

And their in-form neighbours will be delighted if they can inflict another unwanted statistic on them.

If Liverpool do not win at Goodison Park it will be the first time since the 1911-12 season that they will have failed to win any of their first four league games.

And then, whether Houllier likes it or not, Liverpool will be in a crisis.

Midfielder Gerrard has identified the problems following the stalemate with Spurs.

"You do not want to be one point behind Arsenal, let alone seven," admitted Gerrard.

"You do not want to give anyone a start like that. But we will get it right, I do not know about the title but we must have Champions League football back."

One of Liverpool's brightest and most ambitious young players already doubts that they can win the championship before August is out.

Houllier must be a frustrated and confused man after watching Spurs shut out his side.

The Liverpool chief may well have laughed off criticism and warned people not to tell him how to do his job as complaints over his team's boring tag have grown.

But he was still swayed to totally change the style against Spurs with a brave attacking formation that included Vladimir Smicer, Harry Kewell and El Hadji Diouf in an adventurous midfield - plus two quick, mobile strikers in Michael Owen and Milan Baros.

But it still did not produce that elusive Liverpool win.

Houllier admitted: "It was an audacious and bold set-up, to say the least.

"It is just a shame that it did not pay off because the boys did a lot of work and they know they have to keep going.

"But Michael (Owen) had one of those nights when he did not have a real chance.

"But his movement was good and he held the ball well, but sometimes that happens. He was very tightly marked, well looked after by their defenders.

"I was disappointed with the result but not the performance, they were only better than us for 10 minutes.

"The confidence in terms of finishing was not as high, but we are building from the back, this was our second clean sheet in two games and everything was encouraging for the future.

"We had the chances and the boys know that they must keep working at it."

He added: "It was a disappointing result but a good game of football and the Liverpool performance in terms of team play was the best of the season, certainly our best attacking display.

"The pace and the movement of the midfield was really encouraging for the future. I was really pleased with the way we played, we created chances all night.

"What was missing was the goals. In the overall play there was more fluency about our game and the attacking display was very, very good.

"At times we had some fantastic moves with the whole team involved, so let us keep going in that vein."

Houllier insists goals will come


Gerard Houllier insisted his new-look attacking Liverpool deserved more than goalless draw against Spurs at Anfield.

Houllier shuffled his side following constant criticism that they are boring, and produced arguably the most attacking formation of his reign as Liverpool manager.

But a determined, organised Tottenham side clawed their way to a draw which leaves Liverpool in 15th spot with just two point from three games - and already seven points off the top.

Houllier said: "It was a bold move to put out a team like that, it's just a shame that it did not pay off.

"They had a couple of chances, but we were in control for almost all the game. We just needed a goal from somewhere.

"Look at the fouls they committed to stop us, that was the best Liverpool performance of the season and I feel sorry for the lads that we did not achieve more.

"The crowd were not moaning, they could see we were playing good stuff and I believe there is plenty of encouragement for the future after that."

Houllier added: "A goal would have given us more confidence, we needed to score, but it will come.

"Michael Owen had one of those nights when he was closely marked and did not get a chance, but I believe we have the strike force to turn this around."

Hoddle delighted with a point


Spurs boss Glenn Hoddle hailed his side's quality defending in the goalless draw with Liverpool at Anfield.

Hoddle was full of praise for Dean Richards, Ledley King and Anthony Gardner.

He said: "That is the first time since they have all been with us that I have been able to field the trio for a second game on the trot.

"They were outstanding on Saturday against Leeds and again here. We defended very well, were solid and they found it difficult to break us down.

"We knew they would come at us, they still have not got that elusive win, and we needed to be shrewd in the way we play and controlled.

"It was a credit to our lads and we deserved our point."

Spurs frustrate Liverpool

BBC Sport Online

Liverpool's miserable start to the season continued with a goalless draw against a well-organised Spurs side.

Gerrard Houllier picked an attacking side, leaving Danny Murphy on the bench and playing Michael Owen, Harry Kewell, El-Hadji Diouf, Milan Baros and Vladimir Smicer.

But the home team struggled to create clear-cut chances and have yet to score from open play this season, collecting just two points from three games.

Steven Gerrard did force a good save from Kasey Keller, but Jerzy Dudek was called upon several times to prevent the visitors from registering a rare win at Anfield.

Anthony Gardner, Ledley King and Dean Richards formed a very effective back three for Spurs and Glenn Hoddle can take great encouragement from his team's first clean sheet in the Premiership since January.

With so many forward-minded players Liverpool started the match at a furious pace, but the visitors were not ruffled and soon started to create chances.

Helder Postiga struck the ball crisply from 25 yards but his shot flew over the crossbar before Rohan Ricketts burst through from midfield, forcing Jerzy Dudek to make a sharp one-handed save.

The rebound fell towards Zamora, who laid the ball into Stephen Carr's path only for the Spurs defender to drill his shot wide.

Spurs continued to push forward with verve and invention, Postiga forcing another save from Dudek.

A cleverly worked corner then saw Richards head the ball towards Gardner, but the defender missed the target from six yards.

In stark contrast, the attacking abilities of Liverpool's forward line struggled against Tottenham's well marshalled three-man central defence.

But with half-time looming a Gerrard cross appeared to have picked out Kewell in a superb position, only for Anthony Gardner to avert the danger.

Smicer shot straight at Kasey Keller early in the second half and Sami Hyypia put the ball in the Spurs' net, but his effort was ruled out for a foul on Richards.

Clean-cut chances, though, remained at a premium for the home team as Spurs continued to defend competently.

And Mauricio Taricco went close to scoring in consecutive games with a powerful that narrowly missed the target.

Hoddle introduced Saturday's match-winner Frederic Kanoute came on for Zamora and showed some delightful touches.

But Gerrard almost broke the deadlock with a stunning drive from 18 yards that Keller did exceptionally well to save.

Shortly before full-time Liverpool won a free-kick in a dangerous position but substitute Danny Murphy could not find the target. It was symptomatic of his team's night.

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Thor Zakariassen