27 September 2012

Impressive Liverpool Youngsters See Off West Brom To Start League Cup Defence In Style

By Joseph Chapman: https://twitter.com/jcwba16

A youthful Liverpool side secured their first domestic win of the season after seeing off West Brom at the Hawthorns, to successfully begin the retention of their title. 

Dani Pacheco, Jordan Henderson and Stewart Downing all started the game alongside youngsters Yesil, Assaidi and Nuri Sahin, on loan from Real Madrid. Brad Jones deputised for the regular Pepe Reina in goal, while Jamie Carragher was recalled to the heart of defence. Martin Skrtel, Luis Suarez and Steven Gerrard were all rested.

The Baggies made fewer changes, Gabriel Tamas and George Thorne replacing Gareth McAuley and Claudio Yacob, who both dropped to the bench. Markus Rosenberg made his full debut, while Yassine El Ghanassy appeared amongst the subs.

And it was the home side who struck first. Liverpool's excellent following could be forgiven for thinking it was going to be another bad day at the office, as Tamas drove a low shot home from close range after Brad Jones fumbled a Liam Ridgewell free-kick. 

However the young Mersey boys were clearly not aware of the pressure that their historic club were under, as from the equaliser onwards, they were in control of the rest of the half. 

Not a lot was considered to be on for Nuri Sahin on the edge of the area, but the young Turk's speculative effort was allowed to squirm into the net, after an uncharacteristic mistake from Ben Foster.

Ridgewell was soon to be forced off with an injury, which saw Craig Dawson come on and meant the Albion defence had to reshuffle. This saw Dawson taking the right back position, while Billy Jones moved over to left back.

The width offered by Downing and Assaidi caused havoc, as they took advantage of Dawson and Jones' unfamiliarity with their positions.

However towards the end of the half, the Baggies came again, a shot from Mulumbu and a wicked free kick from Dorrans testing the Red's defensive resolve. 

H-T: 1-1

The second half saw complete dominance from the title defenders, albeit with the Baggies having chances to regain the lead along the way. Yesil had a dipping effort pushed away by Foster, while a fantastic curling shot from Pacheco brushed against the bar.

Down the other end, the bright Lukaku took one touch too many, otherwise a shot was on. Marc Antoine Fortune was persistent and his hold up play did not go unnoticed. Rosenberg, who was otherwise disappointing, showed strength when taking the ball to the byline, but the ball was claimed by Jones. Long replaced Lukaku, but it was in the Liverpool substitutions where there was more interest. Jerome Sinclair, alongside Suso, entered the fray and in doing so became the Red's youngest serving player at 16 years and 6 days. 

This proved to be the catalyst for the winner, as Sahin netted his second to prevent extra time. Suso was allowed to run at the defence without a challenge, before spreading the ball wide to the impressive Assaidi. He in turn put the ball on a plate for Sahin to net, sending the multiple fans behind the goal into raptures. 

Fortune nearly replied immediately, hitting the post from close range, but it is Liverpool who progress, as Rodgers faces his old club Swansea in the next round.

Ratings: WBA- Foster 5, Jones 6, Tamas 7, McAuley 6, Dawson 6, Ridgewell 5, Mulumbu 7, Thorne 6, Fortune 7, Rosenberg 5, Lukaku 6, Dorrans 6, Long 5, El Ghanassy n/a.

Liverpool: Jones 5, Robinson 7, Carragher 6, Coates 6, Wisdom 6, Sahin 8, Assaidi 7, Downing 6, Henderson 6, Pacheco 7, Yesil 7, Sinclair 5, Suso 6.

1 comment:

  1. All very good but what was the score????