Liverpool 0-0 Fulham

Premier League
Saturday 22 November 2008 - 3:00 pm
Anfield
Liverpool0
0Fulham
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Liverpool strolled to a draw in a game in which only a couple of Liverpool players decided to show up.

The reds struggled in the first half, some poor build up from midfield was as much to blame as some poor finishing. Robbie Keane had the chance of the half when he fluffed his shot from about 5 yards out.

These missed chances gave Fulham belief and they too tested Reina on a couple of occasions, with both Andy Johnson and Jimmy Bullard having good chances.

Towards the end of the half, Torres pace against cut Fulham apart and he sent a great cross in but nobody was well placed enough to dispatch the ball in the net.

No changes at the half time interval but the reds come out with a bit more urgency. Torres sent a curling shot just over the bar and then minutes later danced through the defence sending his shot straight at the keeper.

As the minutes ticked on the fans awaited Alonso’s arrival which came on 65 minutes. What they probably weren’t expecting was that Mascherano would make way for the Spaniard.

Liverpool fell away as the half progressed and after the substitution of Mascherano, another shocker was on the way. Riera, arguably the reds second best player, was removed for Ryan Babel, who’s first touch was a shot that went way wide. Why Babel hadn’t replaced Keane to provide a bit of zip up front is anyone’s guess.

El Zhar came on for Kuyt who admittedly looked tired as the game wore on.

The clock ticked down and Liverpool looked less and less likely to score with each passing minute.

A hugely disappointing result, performance and the Anfield crowd should be ashamed at their poor performance as well.

Regrettably, games like this help shape Champions and the some Liverpool players proved yet again that they have a lot to learn in terms of desire and passion.

Post Match Reaction

Rafa Benitez:

“Clearly you can see that when the players arrive late, you don’t have time to prepare them and you have to push the player. Three or four did not have enough energy. The players are thinking: ‘It’s a bad day. It is cold’ so everything was against them.

“We couldn’t score against Stoke, but we were very dominant and against Fulham and we controlled the game.”

Fabio Aurelio:

“It’s always difficult after an international week. The team can’t prepare properly, but we can’t use that as an excuse. The other teams have international players.

“We were playing at Anfield and these are the type of games we should be winning.

“And we can’t use Gerrard being missing as an excuse for us not winning. We played more than a month without Torres and we kept on getting the results, so we’ve shown we can do it without certain players.

“Steven is a great player and is important for us. But we had a lot of good players with quality on the pitch against Fulham.

“We have a big squad and we need to use that.”

Fulham midfielder Jimmy Bullard:

“We took it to Liverpool and gave it a right bash.

“But who do I think will win the league? Chelsea. And I think they’ll do it quite comfortably this year.

“Liverpool do have an outstanding squad of individuals. It’s awesome. But sometimes it’s not about individual players – it’s about the team.

“They were vulnerable on the break because Jamie Carragher was getting forward. Our front two did cause them a bit of aggro, but you can’t be unhappy about getting a point here.”

Teams

Liverpool: Reina, Aurelio, Agger, Arbeloa, Carragher, Riera (Babel 76), Mascherano (Alonso 65), Leiva, Kuyt (El Zhar 81), Torres, Keane

Subs not used: Cavalieri, Hyypia, Benayoun, Dossena

Fulham: Schwarzer, Konchesky, Hughes, Hangeland, Paintsil, Davies, Bullard (Baird 93), Murphy, Dempsey (Gera 84), Johnson, Zamora

Subs not used: Zuberbueler, Kallio, Nevland, Stoor, Gray

Match Thread and post match inquest here

Match Stats

Liverpool Possession: 57%. Shots:  21 (On target = 6 ). 391 accurate passes. 74 bad passes.
Fulham Possession: 43% Shots:  6 (On target = 5).  272 accurate passes.  44 bad passes.

Updated Player Stats

Updated League Season Comparison

4 comments on
Liverpool 0-0 Fulham

  1. I can’t undersatnd why rafa persists with Lucas, when he’s clearly not ready for the prem. Alonso may have been tired from internation duties but i think he should have started him, got into a leading position and then taken him off to rest him.

  2. There is a combination of factors at play here. Yes the internationals are taking their toll on players – all the top four teams failed to make any ground and we all saw that Wengers bunch got a panning.

    Though I persoanlly, am a little tired of seeing the same subs occurring – I am not referring to a player but the fact that we change our best performing player – reira on this occasion! Why Rafa – it is frustrating and I have every faith in his decisions but they are sometimes quite confusing. I’d agree with an earlier comment of Babel to replace Keane. Really is another confusing aspect is Keane’s in ability tpo convert at the moment – The lad surely needs a good few sessions to build that confidence up and play like we have all seen him – just hope it comes soon.

    Come on the reds – lets take the positives – still joint top of the league and next weekend its December.

  3. rafa is right why play these waste of time friendley’s in mid week when there is so much at stake now keep the same team week in week out and get them to gell.
    it is still tight at the top but now we have december when there is a lot of fixtures to come.

  4. Torres worked very hard pity the other players never had the same work ethic. If Stevie had played he would have scored. Keane hasn’t panned out crouch shouldn’t have been sold. We are not scoring enough goals to win the title

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