After The Match 


Everton-Liverpool 1-2 (1-0)        20.10.07                          PL
Goals: (Kuyt pens. 74, 90)                                 Hyypia (og 38)
Team: Reina, Riise, Finnan, Hyypia, Carragher, Benayoun, Mascherano, Gerrard, Sissoko, Voronin, Kuyt
Subs: Babel (Benayoun 68), Lucas (Gerrard 72),
Pennant (Sissoko 88)
Not used: Itandje, Crouch
Yellow: Kuyt (63), Carragher (89)       McFadden (89)
Red: Hibbert (52), Neville (90)
Referee: Mark Clattenburg
Attendance: 40,049
Shots on target: 1-7
Shots off target: 6-9
Blocked shots: 0-5
Fouls conceded: 10-16
Corners: 9-6
Offsides: 0-3
Possession: 38.6-61.4
Yellow: 1-2

HEADLINES "In England you don't like to see players diving..."
    Rafael Benitez

2410: Tommy Smith: Benitez wrong to criticise...
2310: Lawrenson: Derby victory may be good omen...
2210: Benitez makes peace with Gerrard
2210: Petition to ban derby referee
2210: Gerrard: 'Victory eased my derby pain’
2110: Kuyt admits Mersey luck
2010: Moyes fumes at referee
2010: Reds boss ignore Everton's penalty claims
2010: Kuyt double wins dramatic Mersey derby 

Tommy Smith: Benitez
wrong to criticise Gerrard

Liverpool Echo

I was disappointed to hear that Rafa Benitez pulled Steven Gerrard off in the derby because “he was playing with too much passion”.

The Liverpool skipper is a natural footballer. Imagine what the team would be like if he, and Jamie Carragher for that matter, did not show passion.

Was Gerrard’s burst down the middle which subsequently led to a penalty passion, or was he just being a footballer? I would say it was the act of a passionate footballer.

The most important aspects of the game are ability and passion. If the skipper lacked passion he would come in for criticism; if he lacked ability he would also take stick. But he has both attributes by the bundle – and this was a derby match, for goodness sake, where passion is essential.

If it had been me hauled off when I thought I was making a contribution, I would have had a go at the manager. I felt for Gerrard, especially as he was showing glimpses of what we expect of him.

I was bewildered by Benitez’s reason for taking Gerrard off. Granted, Lucas Leiva played a crucial part in the incident which led to the second penalty, but the manager was talking about having someone to calm things down when I felt we needed someone to lift the game.

It was one of a few decisions that led to controversy and anger in the aftermath of a derby that had enough incidents – two dismissals, two penalties and an own goal – to provide sufficient discussion until the next game at Anfield.

But referee Mark Clattenburg saw to it that he, rather than the players, would become the centre of attention.

I think he got both penalties for the Reds spot on and made the right decisions for the dismissals.

But he got it wrong over Dirk Kuyt. His feet were off the floor and, while he might have changed his mind about the tackle, it was two-footed and he had to go.

If I was an Evertonian I would have been a little wild about that decision, and possibly wilder about the Carragher-Lescott incident. That was a penalty, too.

I was happy to be a Liverpudlian and take the three points, when we only got one last season from the two games.

Everton were robbed but, as we have seen it all before, these things happen. They finished with nine men but deserve a pat on the back for finishing with a flurry, which should have led to a third spot kick.

Lawrenson: Derby victory
may be good omen for Liverpool

Liverpool Daily Post

For the rest of this week, Liverpool and Everton will have to adhere to the old cliche about derbies being one-off occasions when the form book goes out of
the window.

They have big games in Europe and dwelling on events at Goodison won’t help the preparation one bit.

Liverpool might have won but it was one of those days when they didn’t play particularly well and got away with it. When it was 11 against 11 they were second best and didn’t really create much.

And if you can take Steven Gerrard off for committing the heinous crime of showing passion in a Merseyside derby than I, for one, have officially given up trying to second guess what Rafael Benitez will do.

But it ultimately worked out for him and at least he knows now he doesn’t necessarily have to rely on his captain or Fernando Torres to steal a win from a tight game.

That’s the fact that will give him the most confidence when he goes for the victory he needs in Besiktas tomorrow. As for Everton, the start of their UEFA Cup group campaign couldn’t have been better timed.

Imagine if they hadn’t made it this far and the had a full week to wait between the derby defeat and this weekend’s trip to Derby. It would’ve been agony. As it is, they don’t have long to wait to get over the result and they’ll be desperate to make amends for what they feel was daylight robbery against Liverpool.

All they need to do is play at the same tempo and with the same philosophy and they should kick off with a much-needed win.

Benitez makes peace with Gerrard

Liverpool manager Rafael Benitez has today cleared the air with Steven Gerrard over replacing him in Saturday's Merseyside derby after the midfielder had declared he was "hurt and disappointed" by
the decision.

With 20 minutes left at Goodison Park and the clash finely poised at 1-1, the Reds manager controversially replaced his skipper with Lucas Leiva - much to the surprise of Gerrard and the travelling support.

The Spaniard claimed afterwards he had made the switch because his side needed "less passion" and the change was vindicated when the Brazilian's shot was handled by Phil Neville on the line to give Liverpool a last-minute penalty, which Dirk Kuyt duly converted.

Benitez discussed the matter with Liverpool-born Gerrard at the club's training ground in Melwood today and believes the midfielder's reaction was perfectly natural.

He told "When you are a manager you need to make decisions, not just think about them. You must think how you can win the game. Every player is the same for me when you are trying to win a game.

"We have talked because every player would be disappointed, especially Gerrard because it was a derby. He wanted to score the winning goal, but he is okay. After some time he'll understand that it was an idea and I was thinking about the best for the team.

"You know when you change a player he must show that he wants to play, but I think he was okay at the end."

Petition to ban derby referee

By Greg O'Keeffe - Liverpool Echo

Everton fans have launched an internet petition calling for the banning of controversial derby day ref Mark Clattenburg from officiating at Premier League games.

Blues supporters blame him for the defeat, during which he refused to award Everton a penalty in the final minutes of the game.

He further angered Everton supporters by not sending off Liverpool striker Dirk Kuyt for a two-footed airborne challenge on Blues skipper Phil Neville.

David Moyes was heavily critical of Clattenburg, who is highly rated by the FA, in his post-match interview.

Now hundreds of football fans have signed the online petition which calls for the ban on Clattenburg.

It says: “We the undersigned ask the Football Association to ban Mark Clattenburg for life from refereeing in the Premier League. He gave a penalty for a foul committed outside the box.

“He gave a yellow card to the Liverpool player after his unsportsmanlike tackle on the Everton player, a tackle which according to the rules should result a direct red card.

“And in the dying moments of the game he refused to give a penalty to Everton after an obvious foul on the Everton player inside the box.”

Laura McDonald from Liverpool wrote: “He is a disgrace to the profession; even a half blind pensioner would have done a better job refereeing the match.”

But one fan using the name of Reds legend Jan Molby, said: “Mr Clattenburg – you are a legend sir.”

Gerrard: 'Victory eased my derby pain’

By Tony Barrett - Liverpool Echo

Steven Gerrard today told how the joy of Liverpool’s last gasp win over Everton helped ease the pain of being taken off in Saturday’s derby.

The Liverpool skipper was visibly stunned at being substituted – a decision which Rafa Benitez says was made for the good of the team on the day.

Despite being “hurt and disappointed” at being withdrawn, Gerrard insists the important thing was that Liverpool went on to win the game and avenge last season’s 3-0 reverse at the hands of their local rivals.

He said: “I’m a local lad so the derby is really important to me and I would have liked nothing better than to play the full game and to be on the pitch when we got the winner.

“But as it turned out I was taken off and Lucas Leiva who replaced me played a crucial role in us getting the winning goal.

“I was hurt and disappointed at being taken off because, like I said, I’m a local lad and the derby means everything to me.

“I’ll be speaking to the manager about it just to find out why I was substituted, but I won’t be banging on his door or anything like that.

“We’ll just have a chat and whatever is said will remain between us. But I’ve been in the game long enough to know that no-one is going to play every minute of every game and there will be times when I’m taken off like everyone else.

“The most important thing is that we won the game.

“When we lost there last season it left a bad feeling that didn’t go away for quite some time, so it is good to get that out of our systems.”

Gerrard also thanked the Liverpool fans for the support they gave him at Goodison Park as he bids to rediscover his best form.

He said: “The way the fans got behind me was fantastic and I loved it.

“I know I haven’t been at my best lately but I’m doing everything I can to get back there and having that kind of backing really does make a difference.

“I’m working back towards my best and knowing the fans are behind me will definitely help me get there much quicker.”

Kuyt admits Mersey luck

Sky Sports

Dirk Kuyt has admitted he was 'a bit lucky' to not have been sent off in an incident-packed 206th Merseyside derby on Saturday.

Liverpool won a pulsating match 2-1, with Kuyt scoring the winning penalty in the second minute of added time to add to his earlier strike from the spot.

But the Liverpool striker was lucky to still be on the pitch after receiving only a yellow card for his lunge at Phil Neville, despite protests from the Everton players and manager David Moyes.

Liverpool boss Rafael Benitez insisted Kuyt was "trying to block the ball, not connect with the player", while Kuyt himself insisted there was no malice.

The Dutchman said: "People saw the TV and said my booking looks bad. But I was just trying to make a tackle and I did not want to touch the player, and I didn't.

"Maybe I was a bit lucky, but I never had any intention of trying to hit the player, it was a yellow card and I accept that."

But Everton's veteran defender Alan Stubbs believed the lunge deserved a straight red, saying: "That was a two-footed lunge. If a player leaves the ground with both feet, that's a red card, and he gets a yellow.

"In the laws of the game if a player goes in with two feet and makes a lunge, and that is what it was, it's a red."

Stubbs was also upset that Steven Gerrard appeared to influence referee Mark Clattenburg's decision to send off Tony Hibbert for bringing the Liverpool captain down in the box.

"The referee went to book Tony Hibbert holding a yellow card, their player (Gerrard) walks past him (the referee) and it's changed to a red," said Stubbs.

The veteran defender was also upset that no penalty was awarded when Jamie Carragher appeared to haul Joleon Lescott to the ground as Everton fought for an equaliser deep into injury time.

Stubbs added: "If the referee looks at the decision again he will see the penalty appeal was right. Their lad had his arms all around Joleon, what was he supposed to do?

"And Benitez has gone on TV saying he was diving, but just look at it, that's a stone-wall penalty."

Moyes fumes at referee

By Peter O'Rourke - Sky Sports

Everton boss David Moyes was left fuming following his side's controversial 2-1 defeat to Liverpool.

The Toffees finished the game with just nine men after Tony Hibbert and Phil Neville conceded penalties which Dirk Kuyt scored to give Liverpool the victory.

Hibbert was sent off after being adjudged to have brought down Steven Gerrard inside the box, while Neville was given his marching orders for handling Lucas Levia's shot on the line.

Moyes felt Hibbert's sending off was debatable and also despaired at his side's failure to win a penalty of their own late on when Joleon Lescott went down in the box under pressure from Jamie Carragher.

Moyes was not happy with the performance of referee Mark Clattenburg feeling his side had been hard done by.

"I am not sure the first incident was a penalty. It was a coming together of two players and Gerrard's arm goes across Hibbert before there is any contact," bemoaned Moyes.

"Gerrard slipped and Hibbert did not make a tackle.

"The referee pulled out a yellow card and then the Liverpool captain has a word with him and it becomes a red.

"Decisions are made, they happen, that is football. But in the last seconds of the game there is the chance for it to be corrected and it would have been a result Everton deserved.

"We deserved that penalty if not more, and if the other penalties were more blatant than that, then I am in the wrong game.

"I am seemingly seeing football differently. If the referee does not see that you have got to ask why. Maybe they should not be there."

He added: "We train every day, we know what decisions should be and the referee does not give it. That is beyond everything I can imagine.

"Referees do their job as best they can, I have tried very hard in the past year not to talk about referees. We have had referees into training and we are very supportive.

"They have a tough job, but do they understand how tough my job is and what it would have meant for us to get those points in the bag?

"There are now a couple of players banned. We understand what happened to Phil Neville, that was correct but we got no decisions at all.

"It can't just be me being bitter, people asked was the referee biased and I can't comment but we got nothing at all.

"I felt we were better than Liverpool. On another day we would have got another result, we did not play well but then Liverpool are not where they want to be either.

"Even down to nine men we still had the chance of a penalty and we did not get it. A win would have pushed us into the top half of the league because of crucial decisions going against us."

Reds boss ignore
Everton's penalty claims

By Peter O'Rourke - Sky Sports

Liverpool boss Rafa Benitez felt his side deserved their dramatic 2-1 win over Everton at Goodison Park.

Dirk Kuyt's last-gasp penalty earned Liverpool the derby spoils against nine-man Everton to get Benitez's men back to winning ways after a poor run of form.

Everton were gifted the lead in the first half when Sami Hyypia put through his own net when he volleyed the ball past Jose Reina.

Tony Hibbert was sent off on 54 minutes when he brought down Steven Gerrard inside the box and Kuyt scored from the resulting penalty.

The home side were reduced to nine men in the final minute when Phil Neville handled Lucas Levia's shot on the line and Kuyt kept his nerve to score from the spot to give Liverpool the victory.

Asked if his side deserved to win, Benitez said: "I think so. They were playing long balls and we were trying to pass.

"We were trying to go forward, creating chances with the ball on the ground.

"They were using long balls and trying to keep the ball high. It was difficult."

Benitez shrugged off Everton's late penalty claim when Joleon Lescott appeared to be wrestled to the ground by Jamie Carragher in the dying seconds.

"In England you don't like to see players diving so it was a surprise to me," continued Benitez.

The Spaniard surprisingly substituted Gerrard for Lucas with 20 minutes remaining and he believes his gamble paid off.

"In this game, sometimes you need to play with the brain and we were playing with heart," noted Benitez.

"We needed to keep the ball and pass the ball."

Kuyt double wins
dramatic Mersey derby

By JP Lonergan - Setanta Sports

Dirk Kuyt struck twice form the penalty spot as Liverpool came from behind to defeat Everton 2-1 in Saturday’s Merseyside derby at Goodison Park, the hosts ending the game with nine men.

An own goal from Sami Hyypia had given The Toffees a half-time lead, but Kuyt twice profitted as referee Mark Clattenburg sent both Tony Hibbert and Phil Neville off and the Dutchman found the net from both spot-kicks, the second in stoppage-time.

Everton were then incensed as Jamie Carragher looked to have hauled Joleon Lescott to the floor in the dying seconds and, not for the first time, Clattenburg waved their penalty appeal away, as The Reds held on for a fortunate victoy in what had been an open and ultimately dramatic game.

Rafel Benitez started with Andriy Voronin and Dirk Kuyt in attack and Peter Crouch on the bench. Fernando Torres and fellow Spaniard Xabi Alonso did not make the sixteen after failing to overcome their respective injuries.

Phil Jagielka was named in the Everton midfield at the expense of Lee Carsely, while Ayegbini Yakubu partnered Victor Anichebe in attack. Scotland star James McFadden was on the bench, but Andy Johnson is injured and Tim Cahill was not yet risked as his long-awaited return to the side looms.

It was the visitors who made the initial surge in the game and Ukraine hit-man Andriy Voronin had a gilt-edged chance to give them the lead after just five minutes.

A mix-up between Hibbert and Joseph Yobo allowed Yossi Benayoun some room on the left of the Everton area and after turning back on to his right foot, the Israel man played in Voronin at the edge of the area, but his shot was tame and straight at Tim Howard.

Voronin had another chance minutes later, but his awful effort from 20 yards sailed over the bar after he powered onto the loose ball, following a Steven Gerrard free.

After a quiet start, Everton then began to come into the game with Leon Osman impressing in midfield and his daring run into the Reds area left Hyypia in his wake and he looked to pick Yakubu out with his cross, but Jose Reina got a crucial touch to clear the danger.

Osman then tried his luck with a speculative volley from outside the box after Neville’s throw was cleared and as Everton’s momentum continued to grow, striker Anichebe headed just over from Mikel Arteta’s sweet free-kick from the left.

As Liverpool tried to respond, Gerrard shifted a free-kick into the path of John Arne Riise and his powerful effort deflected behind for a corner. But, The Reds could not punish Everton with the set-piece and very shortly found themselves behind after failing to deal with their own corner to defend.

Carragher got his head to Arteta’s inswinger, but only drove it wide of the area where Alan Stubbs rescued it and sent the ball back in towards the six-yard box. Lescott’s header was not the strongest, but as Hyypia went to clear it away, he succeeded only in slicing it into his own net to the delight of the home supporters.

Lescott’s part in the goal clearly geed him up and the newly-capped England man nearly created another when he surged up the left flank and sent the ball across the edge of the area, from where an instinctive Osman effort went just to the left of Reina’s goal.

Kuyt had barely been in the game in the first half, but Benitez left his team as it was at the start of the second period and was rewarded when the Dutchman levelled the score nine minutes in, albeit in controversial circumstances.

After an initial good start to the half for The Toffees, with Arteta and Lescott impressing, they left far too much space at the back as Gerrard took the ball from Benayoun and burst forward from his own half. Hibbert was the last man back and tugged at Gerrard, bringing the England man to the ground from what looked to be outside the area.

However, Clattenburg awarded the penalty and then after initially having a yellow card in his hand, pulled out the red after further complaint from Gerrard.
Hibbert walked and Kuyt stepped up to send Howard the wrong way with the coolest of penalties.

Neville dropped back to right back and with the score level, the game heated up, David Moyes raging that his side were not given a penalty of their own as Lescott looked to been tugged by Steve Finnan.

Riise then shot over after being picked out by Kuyt, Reina held a clever Yakubu effort and Howard did well to keep out a Voronin chance before Kuyt headed the rebound over as the game stretched from one end of the field to the other.

Then, Hyypia, who was having a tough game, was easily outmuscled by Anichebe. The young Nigerian played in Yakubu to send a powerful effort just wide, though Reina looked to have had it covered.

Gerrard sent an effort from outside the area straight into Howard’s hands and then to everyone’s surprise - no one more than his own - was withdrawn for the inexperienced Brazilian Lucas Leiva, with Ryan Babel also on for Benayoun, whose influence on the game had wained.

The visitors upped the pressure and after doing the hard bit by going past Neville and Yobo, Voronin sent an awful shot wide of Howard’s goal. Sissoko then spurned a good chance from the right of the six-yard box before Voronin headed Finnan’s perfect cross off target with time running out.

Stubbs sent a powerless free wide as Everton earned some respite, but there was still time for the most dramatic of finishes.

An intense few moments saw a Javier Mascherano shot blocked and sub Jermaine Pennant setting up Voronin from the rebound. Howard saved Voronin’s effort at point blank range, with the loose ball falling to Lucas, who drove goalward only for Neville to turn it away with his hand.

He walked as he did two years ago when Everton also finished with nine and Kuyt scored from the spot for the second time, though on this occasion, Howard almost kept it out.

There was still time for controversy as with the hosts frantically chasing an equaliser, Lescott was brought crashing to the ground six yards out by the just-booked Carragher.

Clattenburg, however, astonishingly waved the claims away and blew his whistle to signal the end and three points for Liverpool, whose title chase is back on track – just.

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Thor Zakariassen ©