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
“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
Our Man of the Match
Fernando Torres scored a goal. So he can have it.