Sunday, October 26, 2008

EPL 26/10/2008 : CHELSEA VS LIVERPOOL

CHELSEA 0 - 1 LIVERPOOL
Sunday 26 October 2008 13:30 , Barclays Premier League

ALONSO FIRES REDS CLEAR AT THE TOP



Liverpool have moved three points clear at the top of the Barclays Premier League after Xabi Alonso's first-half strike gave them a 1-0 victory over Chelsea at Stamford Bridge.

The Spaniard's first goal of the season was enough to maintain the Reds' unbeaten start to the season and brings an end to the Blues' proud home run that had stretched to 86 matches undefeated.

It means Liverpool have now notched up a landmark 600th top-flight victory on the road and halts a Chelsea hoodoo that had seen them win only once at the Bridge - in January 2004 - since the inauguration of the Premier League.

Both sides had gone into the match level on points at the summit of English football and with Chelsea protecting their incredible Bridge record, few observers would have been surprised to see them create the first opening of this heavyweight bout on three minutes.

A slip from Alonso allowed Nicolas Anelka to seize possession and race towards the Liverpool goal. The Frenchman jinked past the first defender before seeing the ball break menacingly towards Deco, but just when it seemed the Portuguese playmaker would open the scoring, Jamie Carragher intervened with one of his trademark blocks to deflect the ball to safety.

If the home support thought it was a sign of things to come then they would be very mistaken, and Alonso's next contribution would result in the opening goal of the game on 10 minutes.

A long throw on the right was flicked on by Dirk Kuyt and as Robbie Keane battled for it, the ball fell invitingly to Alonso who did not waste his chance, firing an awkward left-foot shot that deflected past Petr Cech and into the net.

It was a dream start for a Rafa and co and they would go on to boss the remainder of the first-half, restricting Chelsea to wayward shots from distance, whilst carving out one or two good opportunities of their own.

Indeed, it could have got even better for the visitors on 16 minutes when the impressive Albert Riera danced his way beyond the attentions of Jose Bosingwa and fizzed a shot just wide of the near post.

With Steven Gerrard operating just behind lone striker Robbie Keane, the Reds continued to cause problems, and the skipper nearly added to his eclectic mix of great goals with a stunning 25 yarder that Petr Cech somehow managed to touch over the crossbar.

For their part, Chelsea continued to probe for openings but the away side were well worth their interval lead and Deco's 34th minute piledriver was the closest they came to troubling Pepe Reina.

The home side upped their tempo in the second period but it was the away side who continued to enjoy the best attacking moments with Dirk Kuyt firing just wide from 20 yards.


If the Dutchman's strike was close, then Alonso's exquisite free-kick was even closer, with only a lick of paint on the post preventing the midfielder from doubling his tally.

At times Liverpool were playing some breathtaking counter-attacking football and substitute Ryan Babel was only inches away from collecting a pass to send him clear on goal while Javier Mascherano over-hit his cross when he may have been better placed to shoot.

Babel then showed a cameo of what he is all about with a great first touch to turn his man before sending a sizzling effort wide of the left-hand post.

With so many opportunities going begging, there was always the nagging doubt that Luiz Felipe Scolari's men would snatch a draw, but with Jamie Carragher once again immense at the back, the Reds saw it out to secure Rafael Benitez's first victory away to one of the top-flight's so-called big four.
man of the match




Teams

Liverpool: Reina, Aurelio, Carragher, Agger, Arbeloa, Riera, Alonso, Mascherano, Kuyt, Gerrard (captain), Keane. Subs - Hyypia, Babel, Leiva, Dossena, Cavalieri, Pennant, Benayoun

Chelsea: Cech, Cole, Terry (captain), Carvalho, Bosingwa, Malouda, Lampard, Obi Mikel, , Kalou, Anelka. Subs - Cudicini, Ferreira, Belletti, Di Santo, Sinclair, Ivanovic,

Referee: Howard Webb


Man-of-the-Match: Jamie Carragher

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Goals Clip : Chelsea vs Liverpool 0 - 1
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4 comments:

John said...

The myth about the Blues being immortal in the Premiership is finally broken.

Another strong performance Javier Mascherano.

Vincent Liu said...

yes, now is time for the mighty reds :)

rebedium said...

hi there.......

the RAPIDSHARE video highlight link seems there is some mistake...when click just bring to error message

Vincent Liu said...

to rebedium. sorry 'bout the mistake ...

i already fix it :) happy download it.