Fulham 3-1 Liverpool

Premier League
Saturday 31 October 2009 - 3:00 pm
Craven Cottage
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42'Torres ⚽️
79' Degen
82' Carragher
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Liverpool’s injury crisis reached breaking point today, and the reds ended the game with nine men in a true Halloween horror show down at Fulham.

Steven Gerrard, Glen Johnson, Daniel Agger, Martin Skrtel, Alberto Aquilani, Fabio Aurelio and Albert Riera were all ruled out of the 18 man squad at Craven Cottage.

Degen and Voronin both received exceptionally rare starts for Liverpool – one ending up with a red card and the other with another humiliating performance next to his name.  But when Liverpool need to resort to playing two free transfers then you know what kind of state we are in.

Despite starting relatively well considering the line up, Fulham grabbed the first goal of the game with a 24th minute tap in from Zamora.  Fernando Torres gave the reds hope just before half time with an equaliser.

Degen’s wing was exposed in the 74th minute and Nevland eventually put Fulham back in front.

Four minutes later Degen left the field when he was red carded for a lunge on the Clint Dempsey.

Three minutes later Carragher decided to join his Swiss team-mate in the bath when he brought down Zamora.

Down to nine men Liverpool could only watch on as Dempsey added a late third goal. Chelsea’s victory today sees Liverpool 9 points behind the leaders in 5th place.

Post Match Comments

Rafael Benitez:

“We decided to play Fernando against United which was a difficult decision because he wasn’t 100 per cent fit.

“After this game he needed four days to be ready again but he still isn’t 100 per cent fit, so we had to decide if he could start today or use him for part of the second half. We decided to start with him but I have to protect the player.

“We decided to take him off just after the hour because I want to protect him and don’t want to lose an important player like Fernando for one month. We had options in attack when he came off.”

(On the red cards)

“For me, the first one with Degen was a yellow card, and with the second one it was clear that Carra was kicking the ball and not Zamora.

“I watched the replay and it is clear.

“We will try to appeal against both red cards because for me it’s very clear that Carra was kicking the ball and the other one Degen was not kicking the player.

“It was difficult to take but it was a good response from the nine players who worked hard, but always it’s very difficult to come back against 11 players.”



Reina, Insua, Degen, Carragher, Kyrgiakos, Voronin, Benayoun (Eccleston 78), Leiva, Mascherano, Kuyt (Ayala 85), Torres (Babel 63)

Subs not used: Gulacsi, Spearing, Plessis, Dossena

Goals: Torres (42)

Sent off: Degen (79), Carragher (82)


Schwarzer, Konchesky, Pantsil, Hangeland, Baird, Hughes, Duff (Nevland 46), Dempsey, Greening (Etuhu 86), Kamara (Gera 46), Zamora

Subs not used: Zuberbuhler, Kelly, Smalling, Riise

Goals: Zamora (24), Nevland (73), Dempsey (87)

Yellow card: Baird

Referee: Lee Mason

Attendance: 25,700

Our Man of the Match

Fernando Torres scored a goal. So he can have it.

32 comments on
Fulham 3-1 Liverpool

  1. Look i like all players of liverpool but i would like to be in martin Kelly and off Leiva Lucas because lucas always lose ethe game of liverpool she kick in own port just that…and for Gerrard me the enthusiast and maybe you miss Gerrard thiss is all what i had to say…and please win this match i wait o lot of ‘LiverpooL’pleaseeeeee i wait this results Lyon 1-2 Liverpool or Lyon 0-1 Liverpool…bye bye

  2. Just give rafa some time and i’m 100% lfc will regain its form in no long time. I think that after all the players that got injured back to the squad, we will become stronger. Trust me, its too early to write off lfc out of the title race.

    Injuries are the main reason why lfc are not performing well in recent times (gerrard, torres, skrtel, agger, aurelio, riera are all out). So every players that are available now should improve their style of play and focus for the next game.

    And i agree that lucas is improving from time to time, the only main concern for me is carragher, he’s not at his usual level but i believe that he will improve and back to his best.

    So to all lfc supporters, stop blaming the managers or the owners. The problems came out because of the injury crisis that we are having now(thats because of the international break), so we should now give our support to the club and wish them a success.

  3. Jaysus, to all u Rafa fans out there, get real. U cannot back this half wit any longer!!! I know u all feel it’s owners fault & we are being disloyal to LFC by condemning the manager but just how low do we have to go before u realise who is realy at fault here. The owners didn’t buy those wasters who got destroyed by a depleted Fulham team on Sat. Don’t get me wrong I do think the Yanks need replacing asap but 1st man out has to b the only fool watchin either Lyon or Fulham match who thought Benayoun needed to be substitited. BOTTOM LINE IS HE AIN’T GOT A CLUE HOW TO MANAGE IN PREM LEAGUE & HAS GOTTA GO. The big problem we have is the cost to dump the idiot & his backroom staff. Why oh why did he get a new contract last year. What a joke !! I wish to Jaysus I had a boss like that !!

  4. DIC in and they have an agreement with Mourinho that will bring him to any club they take over… f****ng come on !!!!!!!!

  5. you will be sacked rafa, believe me. and to the us###ss owners, just leave liverpool and let the dubai prince to take over liverpool. and i would like mourinho to manage liverpool cos our current manager is not doing his job properly. sorry to say this rafa, but this is the fact, 6 losses in the last 7 games? thats not a good record for lfc. one more thing, lfc will not win anything this season, trust me. our current squad is not as good as man u and chelsea or even arsenal. to carra, you made so many mistake in the backline, and should improve more. and i am so glad to see lucas improving from time to time.

  6. Woke up early this morning and thought it was the end of the world! How embarrassing was that defeat.The way we caved in .We were shite.I agree with all that has been said by the previous comments and yes Rafa must take the blame.We have a great chance to win at Lyon when our first team will be picked to play.We have 2 home games then and we can win them too???
    Oh bye the way Pepe Reina didnt make a save yet was beaten 3 times.This is a regular thing for us and him???.

  7. Benitez has lost the plot and is putting all his eggs in the champions league basket. l am sick of pathetic excuses and how everyone is “working” , “working” ! Change the record because we are sick hearing it. Yes you can blame the American tossers who own the club but the players Benitez signs are not doing the business. Babel has got worse, Lucas has one game a season at best and don’t even get me started on Ngog or Voronin. Time for changes are needed and all Rafa’s loyal supporters need to wake up. In Rafa we distrust!

  8. well we had 74%per cent in the first half possession and we didnt score. that speak volumes.admittingly injuries were a factor. but we go from one stunning performance to a horror show the next game. only one game won in eight are we unravelling. no easy answers here very complex. but if we finish mid table our financial position will be a disaster

  9. Reina, Insua, Degen, Carragher, Kyrgiakos, Voronin, Benayoun (Eccleston 78), Leiva, Mascherano, Kuyt (Ayala 85), Torres (Babel 63)

    How can anyone use this result to call for Rafa to be sacked?

    Gerrard, Johnson, Agger, Skrtel, Aquilani, Aurelio and Riera were all ruled out before a ball was kicked and for one reason or another we ended up with just 4 players on the pitch who would play if everyone was available – one being in goal – and even Insua would have to give way to Aurelio in my first 11.

    Add in the FACT that the ref wrongly sent off two of our players and I think anyone would have to agree that it is crazy to call for Rafa’s head after such a game.

    Yes we have lost 6 of the last 7 games but the one thing that wins games is goals and when you only have one striker to call on and he is not fully fit for any of those last seven games it is not very surprising that we are not winning.

    And before anyone starts saying Rafa is to blame for that – well that is partly true – but if we acsept that Torres is the best striker in the world and he plays best when he is up front on his own then what other world class striker is going to come to Anfield to sit on the bench. And even if they did want to come, where is the money comming from to poay for them?

    It’s not fare to put all the blame on the yanks either – You can’t blame them for the world-wide banking crisis that is to blame for them having to put their plans on hold. Yes it would have been better for us all if DIC had taken over but it didn’t happen.

    It’s time to move on and bring in new investment ASAP so Rafa can compete with the likes of Manc Usa, Manc Arabia and Chelski.

    And above all – The team need our support more than ever when things are looking bad – Remember Istanbul and even at 3-1 yesterday, those of us who stayed to the end were still singing YNWA

  10. Yesterday was hugley disappointing but lets try and get some perspective here. My immediate thought was about team selection. If that was the strongest 11 players we had to pick from due to injuries then fair enough, not a lot you can do on that front. If it wasn’t the best 11 men we had available then Rafa has made a mistake. I’ve defended Rafa countless times on this forum and I will continue to defend him if I feel he is criticised unfairly. I don’t show blind faith though.

    The one gripe I’ve had with Rafa since the start has been with his team selections at times and in the way he sets up the team. For example, at home to Villa we played with Torres up front on his own with Gerrard just behind and Yossi out on the left wing. If Lucas and Masch had got any deeper in that game they’d have been playing at centre half! We had no balance and for large parts of the game Torres was isolated becuase Gerrard was shackled and we had nobody capable of finding Torres with a pass. From yesterdays game for example, why would you take off your best threat of a goal and most creative player when you are 2-1 down away from home? If Torres and Yossi had serious injuries likely to keep them out for many months then fine, don’t risk them, but neither player indicated to the bench that they wanted to come off. So why take them off. Surely win the game first and then rest the big guns?

    I don’t understand some of those decisions by Rafa, but then it is those tactical decisions that have enabled us to win some huge matches against domestic and european opposition over the last 5 years, so who are we to criticise? I think Rafa is a world class coach who is genuinely capable of winning us the title, provided he is allowed to compete on a level playing field with his rivals. Clearly in the last 5 years he hasn’t. We have a squad worth less money than Chelsea, Utd, City and Spurs. Clearly if he’d been given so much money that would be reflected in the value of our squad? Clealry we have to sell to buy and many players he has signed are just gap pluggers when he hasn’t been given the funds to get his top targets. Simao, Barry, Vidic, Alves, Silva, Villa have all been on the list but we’ve been outpriced. Forget the name above the door. Based on the crucial factors that determine success in modern football we should only be competing for about 5th or 6th spot, yet we’ve been the 3rd best in England over the last 5 years based on lge standings, pts accumulated, trophies won and qualification for and progress in the CL. In terms of wages paid, squad cost, revenues generated and pure wealth at least 4 clubs are above us. Besides, Johnson, Agger, Skrtel, Aurelio, Riera, Gerrard, Aquilani and Torres have all been hit by injury this year. I reckon most if not all those players would be in our strongest 11. If any club in the division was missing 8 of its regulars it would struggle, even those with the strongest squads.

    • I think he took them off because he knew that for us to stand any chance of qualifying to the latter stages of the champions league then we had to have at least torres and yossi fit to play on wed. There is still time to recover in the league but not in europe unless we win on wednesday night.

      • I understand that thinking. It’s just never nice to see us accept defeat so easily. By taking off our two best players that is essentially what we were doing.

        • Ye I know what you mean it’s never nice to see the manager go ‘Rite we’ve lost this one now lets focus on the next game’ but the nature of our squads injury list and the implications of defeat on wednesday mean he was probably rite in his judgement.
          When you consider he could have kept both on and still lost then (worst case scenario) ether one or both get injured we would have no attacking threat on wednesday !
          The league even in the state were in rite now is still recoverable if we can pull back our injuries and regain form it’s not as much as a lost cause as some would have us believe.
          However our Champions League future this season all depends on wednesday against Lyon ! We have to get something from this game, a win will give us a great chance, a draw and well probably have to rely on Lyon winning against Fiorentina and then beating them ourselves which will make that game massive . I just hope that we get the performance and the win we need and kick on from their .

  11. The result yesterday as i sat with my Gf carving a frickin pumpkin felt like i had slipped the knife and sank it through my heart … It was enough that as i had turned on sky sports news to a smug and arrogant ‘Charlie Nicholas’ commentating on our match ( iv never seen him commentate on a match we havn’t lost by the way ), but to hear the way the lads self destructed afer the departure of Torres was unbelievable. Blame who you want ! Blame Rafa and his tactics, blame the owners and their stupid childlike mangement technique but if you don’t blame 11 professional footballers ; whatever their caliber i don’t know what is wrong with you.

    The ‘Fact’ (to take a leaf from rafa) is that there were no men in that team yesterday! No desire or commitment, no professionalism and certainly no footballers! (wearing red that is!)
    I am disgusted that any of them left on the pitch after Yossi and Torres (and maybe a fiew others) had the nerve to call themselves a team !?

    Yes team selection is down to rafa and yes some signings have been bad (remembering that he has had no choice but to go for the bargain bucket) but wene the clock strikes and those players go on to that pitch they are responsible for putting words into action and they are were the majority of blame must lay “F A C T “

  12. the trouble lies with soley with benitez, hes had the money wasted it on terrible players, one of them being lucas the worst player to ever play for liverpool. Then plays what decent players he has out of posistion. we have a good team, but our squad is awfull, we have no one to replace anyone. the best thing for liverpool is to get mouriniho in, sell all the dead wood which is about ten players, buy three decent players with the money

    • Worse than Jean-Michel Ferri whom cost nearly £2m from Istanbulspor in 1998 and played approximately 51 minutes for the club?………You’re probably too young too remember

  13. We need to get back to basics. Form a strong team of players that know each other inside out. Have good, home grown stock in reserve and bring back loyalty to the club from the ground up. I’m sure that’s what Bill Shankly would do right now. How I wish he was still with us.

    Raffa is conducting one, big experiment all the time and it cannot go on. He’s bought duff players and he seems clueless in how to use them. It’s so sad. This is our club but last Wednesday night I felt like I was watching a team of aliens on the pitch.

    It’s time for a radical rethink. Learn form the past and start building again.

  14. Hope Chelsea or Arsenal win the BPL ar any other teams. Pls Stop Man. U. from becoming BPL champion. Help my belove Liverpool club. Sad, Sad, Sad, supporter. How long we have to wait & get hold of the BPL trophy. Still cannot understand, what in Rafa thinking??? Replacing Torres with Babel, this give Fulham a lift & they started to attack. Can’t say more replace Benayoun with Nathan. What is happening !!!

    • Carra has a bad start to the season and you give up on him ! He proved against the manks he still has it and shouldn’t have gone on saturday , which zamora said after the game. After everything that man has done for Liverpool your lack of faith in him really sickens me ! a very wise man once said ‘ Form is temporary , Class is permanent !’ Remember that !

      • Yeh i know but he keeps getting done by pace, he is still phenomenal at last ditch tackles and amazing blocks, but really looks like he will struggle again faster opposition, but you have to admit kyriagos is an awful signing

  15. I love LIVERPOOL FC but I hate being let down by losses like this. I know Fulham is strong when they are playing home games but it just sucks conceding 3 points to them… I was so optimistic at the beginning of the season but when excuses started flying, well my hopes of some silverware just went seriously low… Can we still recover? I do hope so. GO REDS! We can still get the game going! ( i hope) YNWA!

  16. why did rafa take benayoun off? Benayoun is a great n creative player most of the time, and rafa took him off? That’s a very very poor decision.

    Carragher should be rested, he’s kinda not at his usual level nowadays(same like ferdinand), play skrtel n kyrgiakos/agger(when fit) at the back. Honestly, carra needs to rest n should improve more.

    Play babel more, babel should play alongside torres and not on the left or the right wing.

    And get rid of voronin, voronin from my point of view, is playing well only when the game is nearing to finish like 75-90min rather than playing him from the beginning and creates so many mistakes.

    And for the fulham game, all the people around the world knew that lfc would lose when torres was substituted, no torres no win, no goal. I understand that rafa needs to protect him, but what im trying to say is that lfc are too dependent on gerrard n torres. And what will happen if both of them are injured? Same thing will happen like the fulham game. Therefore lfc need to sign another world class striker, n villa will be the best buy for lfc.

    Hope that rafa wil have the solution to bring back lfc to life and put lfc back on title race. And i am not happy with the current situation of liverpool. One more lose, and you can kiss goodbye the champions league spot.

  17. Have bitten my lip for a long time now but am reaching breaking point…could not get to the game and watching on tv hence my late response…

    but what on earth is happening with our club???

    We are simply terrible this year (and we were quite terrible in parts last year too, even with finishing second – remember our bore draws?) – our tactics suck, our play, at times, suck too.

    We seem far too defensive and is working against us. We have loads of possesion but no real attacking play. We can blame the owners, we can blame the manager and we can blame the players.

    Obviously being a fickle football fan I can only give my view and opinion – and thats all it ever is.

    My opinion is all three are too blame!

    Our owners – are paying off the debts to fund themsleves and make profit and stiffling new player purchasing.

    Our manager – is over tactical and has always an inability to be aggresive and go for the win – unless against quality opponents. Far too many pathetic players being signed. We are in the Premier League and need more home grown players who understand the real need to grab a game by the scruff of the collar. The likes of Voronin, Ngog and Plesis – ask yourself, if not at Liverpool what other club would sign them?

    Our players – it really sucks to watch the likes of the mancs and chelsea rentboys who really seem to up the tempo in the last 10 minutes – we just don’t seem to do that anymore – more like BKOTT (Big Kick Over The Top – sorry Roy of the Rovers acronyms) when the time hits 85 mins or send the ball out to the wings – do we have a Plan B? It seems not unless Yossi, Stevie G or Torres cant break through.

    I would love to be able to say where the problem lies in all truths but I am simply a fan…

    Am getting really disappointed with our results but not questioning my loyalty or support to my club – COME ON YOU REDMEN – We Are LIVERPOOL FOOTBALL CLUB – Stand up and be counted!

  18. By the way had it been any other top side like Man Utd or Chelsea having such a miserable season the manager/coach would have been thrown out after such a pathetic start!.

    On the other hand our tradition of blind faith where we keep giving the manager chance after chance to screw us repeatedly stinks like a dead rat.We’re the laughing stock of the Premiership and that makes me furious because our fans desrve much better then Gillette,Hicks and above all Rafa.

  19. Afer spending £250 million in five seasons like Chelsea and Man Utd etc you’d expect us to have a strong enough side to cope with all these injuries but our squad is even weaker then that of Aston Villa,Man City and Spurs.Rafa is using injuries as a smokescreen to cover up his own inability of signing third rate “shqad” players that others wouldn’t even look at!.No matter who was available we should still be strong enough to defeat the likes of Sunderland and Fulham even on our worst day if we were serious title contenders.

    When appointed Rafa had a five year plan to make us title contenders but we’ve not moved forward in the Premiership but for last season when we were half decent yet i’m sure his loyal lapdogs will keep barking unconditional support for him.It’s only the start of Nov and we’re already out of the title race,carling cup and will most likely be eliminated from the Champions League at Lyon at midweek.It’s a nightmare of a season with our team being full of expensive flops signed by Rafa who he now can’t get rid off thus all his petty excuses.

    With no new investors and one of the worst managers in our history we’re in massive trouble infact our very existence is in danger.Rafa is worried about Torres being injured so takes him off early well the way we’re playing the Spaniard and probably Gerrard too won’t be hanging around for long so use him whilst we can!.If we’re eliminated from the Champions League someone like Barca or Man City may just make an offer that we can’t refuse seeing that we need hard cash and fast!.

    • You are living on another planet.

      You really are.

      The only reason we ‘need’ hard cash is because the owners have put us in so much debt that we have to pay £40M a year in interest.

      The owners took £14M out of the value of the squad this year. We were never going to win the league when the owners stole money out our club.


      • It’s people like you who keep Benitez in charge!.The owners deserve and rightfully receive much critisism but Rafa has spent millions on flop players like Babel,Riera etc.

        As i say no matter what we should be defeating the likes of Sunderland and Fulham full stop!

      • QUOTE: our squad is even weaker then that of Man City.

        Not surprised – they’ve got a bottomless pit of money d**khead

        • Not to mention a proper sized wage budget. We can’t afford to pay the wages to have a world class squad because we have to throw £40M to RBS every year.

          Some people fail to see the bigger picture – no manager in the world is going to be able to carry on the sell to buy policy at Liverpool and make us Premiership winners.

          The first step on us ever returning to the top is a change in the blood sucking owners who are destroying the club from the top down.

    • Imran, your “£250 million” is a bit misleading. See this for more nuanced details: http://tomkinstimes.com/2009/10/some-rafa-facts/

      Tomkin says it is £230 million (which is not my complaint. What’s £20 million these days :)) Instead, it is that this is gross. According to Tomkin, “his net spend is less than half that amount, due to needing to sell in order to buy. In 2009, he hasn’t even been allowed to fully reinvest what he’s raised in transfer fees”.

      That previous article from Tomkin puts Rafa’s constraints into perspective, and compares with Manu, Chelsea, Arsenal, etc..

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