Liverpool 3-0 Lille

Europa League Last 16 2nd Leg
Thursday 18 March 2010 - 8:05 pm
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⚽️ Gerrard8'
⚽️ Torres48'
⚽️ Torres90'
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Liverpool turned around a one-goal deficit to comprehensively beat Lille in their second impressive performance in 3 days.

With goals at either end of the goal, sandwiched by an early second half strike – the reds eased past a Lille side who had been effectively subdued.

Liverpool’s 3 goal margin on Monday night was hailed as a step in the right direction and due to injury (Aquilani) and cup-tied players (Rodriguez) – the two forgotten men of mid-week were returned. Lucas partnering Mascherano and Kuyt returning to the right wing.

Were either of them prepared to respond to being dropped? And can Liverpool show steel for the first time in Europe this season and turn around a deficit?

Liverpool started brightly, and it was the returning Lucas who was key.  After skipping past a few players he was eventually fouled as he closed down on goal – in the 8th minute Steven Gerrard converted the spot-kick.

The goal was scored in front of the Kop, as yet again Liverpool lost the toss.  Opposing sides have been keen this season to change which end the reds kick towards, and on every occasion Liverpool have run out winners.

The pre-match build up had been tainted by Albert Riera’s comments about the reds being a ‘sinking ship’. Rafa moved swiftly, suspending the player from the club, fining him heavily and transfer listing him.  Within 8 minutes it was clear that was all forgotten about.

The reds continued with an expansive first 25 minutes, more often than not Lucas the man providing the perfectly executed forward pass and Torres was a constant danger.  Dirk Kuyt and Ryan Babel were both struggling on the wings, and Emiliano Insua (a player who has come under some well deserved criticism) was a lot more confident – at one point himself passing through an array of Lille midfielders and defenders.

A couple of Torres chances arrived – an attempted flick over the keeper, a header and a couple of shots narrowly wide amongst his forays in the first half.

Half time and the tie even, but the reds needed to score again to avoid extra time.

Within 3 minutes Fernando Torres, set up by Ryan Babel’s long range pass, chipped the Lille keeper to double the reds lead.

The game opened out a little.  Liverpool fans nerves set in.  After seeing so many European leads ebbed away in the final minutes this was understandable.  The pressure from the crowd began to build on the players who began to lose their attacking prowess.

But the reds powered back and ensured the last few minutes would be one for celebration.

Gerrard turned on the pace and it was Torres who grabbed the reds third goal on the night.

With the return of Maxi Rodriguez to the squad, Dirk Kuyt is one player who may be under the most threat.

In the end a comprehensive win. Liverpool go in to the Europa League quarter finals 3-1 on aggregate.

Man of the Match: Lucas Leiva

Post Match Comments

Rafa Benitez

“It was difficult because they are a good team. The atmosphere was great and everybody is happy now.

“We needed to score the third goal just in case and it was a bit of a relief.”

“We knew Lille had to push from the beginning and if we did not score an early goal they could carry on with some hope, so this goal gave us some time and some confidence too.

“You could see they were working very hard so it was really good. Lille were dangerous and have some good players with ability and pace.”

Steven Gerrard

“He (Benitez) is the manager and he’s allowed to criticise the team at the right time,” said the England midfielder.

“But I think the reaction over the last two games has been superb and the plan is to maintain it against Man United.

“It was vital this game didn’t go to extra-time [against Lille]. We know how difficult Sunday is going to be.

“We’ll enjoy this result and we’ll get a warm-down on Friday and we’ll look forward to Sunday.”

5 comments on
Liverpool 3-0 Lille

  1. we didnt steam roller them but for a team like lille who have scored the most goals in their french league then to beat them without playing really well and get a clean sheet is a great show. they had one great chance, thats all, thats not bad these days, babel is getting his head down ( example to you reira) it seems as though babel was a bit frustrated and i can let him off, he has never slagged the club off unlike that shite reira, so for me he is even turning me into a babel fan, he has alot to do but i actually would keep him, at least he knows the club now, he even set himself he is happy, thats good enough for me., insua isnt their yet but as a second choice he is more than enough, for me we should add x1 left back x1 frontman x1 ,

    • No Babel never went on twitter and slagged the manager off did he ?! or do it again when he wasn’t getting a game ?! lol

      Babels got the worst track record at the club for it so don’t be too quick to glorify him and condemn Riera just cus the situations have reversed between the two players .

      From what i gather ( and thats only from papers and online like most ) riera has voiced concerns about where the club was going and the leaderships ability to turn things around in the midst of this seasons catastrophe. Also questioning rafa and why he had been dropped all of a sudden to which according to him rafa would not answer him and began avoiding him.( reminds me of the alonso affair )

      After not receiving any clarification he went and…..

    • … did a stupid thing in which he had a massive bust up with one of the younger lads in the club ( name i don’t know) the topic of which was something along the lines of rafa and his lack of effort to make changes when the club needed it and as a result hes been banned from training, fined and put on the transfer list.

      Now i don’t condone his actions with regards to making a public outburst and he has overstepped the mark BUT i do believe that any player (again if true) would have trouble being ignored and dropped with possibly no explanation as to why ? And with rafas previous with alonso and arbeloa as well as babel himself the idea of some truth in this mite not be so far fetched as rafa +others would like us to believe .

  2. what a relief. thanks El Nino. you see Lucas has now seen that his post is at a risk so must back up, which brought us victory. this is what we want from you. Steve (Cap. Planet) you really showed Lille what l’pool isd made of. Man Utd will fall this sunday. who bets me.

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