English Premiership

Fulham rock Liverpool's bid

2009-10-31 19:23
Liverpool coach Rafa Benitez (File)

London - Liverpool manager Rafa Benitez endured another day to forget after his side were beaten 3-1 at Fulham and had two men sent-off at Craven Cottage on Saturday.

Defenders Philipp Degen and Jamie Carragher were both shown straight red cards in the space of two second half minutes as the good work the Reds achieved in reviving their Premier League title challenge during last week's win over Manchester United was undone.

Bobby Zamora had given Fulham the lead but Liverpool had no idea of what was to follow when Fernando Torres volleyed an equaliser.

Substitute Erik Nevland's cheeky flick put the home side back in front and Clint Dempsey wrapped up the victory once Liverpool were down to nine men.

Benitez is famed for changing his line-up whatever the previous score and, given that the 2-1 defeat at Arsenal his side had suffered in midweek was in the League Cup, Saturday was no exception.

The Spaniard opted to give forward Andriy Voronin a rare Premier League start - his first of the season - as he sought to solve the problem of Steven Gerrard's continuing absence.

The England midfielder is making a slow recovery from a groin injury that may yet require surgery.

Voronin fired in an early free-kick from the left that Fulham goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer opted to punch away and the Australian was then involved in a collision with Torres as he gathered a ball into the box.

There was no question of a penalty and referee Lee Mason made the same decision when Lucas Leiva went down in the box under Brede Hangeland's challenge.

Dirk Kuyt's ball across the box from the right just eluded Torres in front of goal as Liverpool continued to dominate the opening exchanges.

But Fulham took the lead in the 24th minute.

Damien Duff was the architect with a ball behind the Liverpool defence from the left that Zamora had anticipated perfectly and he made no mistake from close range.

Liverpool's confidence sagged after that setback but Torres volleyed them level three minutes before half-time.

Fulham captain Aaron Hughes managed to block Voronin's header but the rebound went straight to the former Atletico Madrid man, whose first-time shot from the edge of the penalty area gave Schwarzer no chance.

The home side replaced Duff and Diomansy Kamara with Zoltan Gera and Nevland at the break and Emiliano Insua did well to stop Dempsey sending Nevland clear.

Chris Baird was shown a yellow card for barging Lucas over and the Fulham fans were angry not to be awarded a penalty soon afterwards when Zamora and Carragher tussled as they ran towards the Liverpool goal.

The Liverpool defender lost his footing first and fell across his opponent, toppling him too. Referee Mason was some way away and ruled play on.

Torres was replaced by Ryan Babel for the final 25 minutes, with Benitez perhaps wanting to keep him fresh for Wednesday's all-important Champions League game in Lyon.

But Nevland netted a cheeky poacher's goal to put Fulham back in front.

Konchesky fired over a cross from the left that Reina could only flap away and when Gera headed the ball back into the six-yard box the former Manchester United man was there to flick it home.

Zamora blasted a chance to clinch it over the bar before Degen was shown a straight red card in the 80th minute for lunging in on Dempsey.

Last-man Carragher followed him two minutes later for hauling back Zamora.

The nine men were under intense pressure and Dempsey made it 3-1 with three minutes remaining.



Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
Live Video Streaming
Video Highlights
Sport Talk


6 life hacks you simply have to know

A few simple tricks can make your life so much easier!


For chic geeks...

Device lets disabled people talk through their nose
It’s THIS easy for someone to steal your ATM pin!
This is why you should install iOS 8
17 photo illusions that look so real
21 September 2014
Leicester City v Manchester United, King Power Stadium 14:30
Tottenham Hotspur v West Bromwich Albion, White Hart Lane 14:30
Manchester City v Chelsea, Etihad Stadium 17:00
Everton v Crystal Palace, Goodison Park 17:00
27 September 2014
Liverpool v Everton, Anfield 13:45
Manchester United v West Ham United, Old Trafford 16:00
Crystal Palace v Leicester City, Selhurst Park 16:00
Southampton v Queens Park Rangers, St. Mary's Stadium 16:00
Sunderland v Swansea City, Stadium of Light 16:00
Chelsea v Aston Villa, Stamford Bridge 16:00
Hull City v Manchester City, The KC Stadium 16:00
Arsenal v Tottenham Hotspur, Emirates Stadium 18:30
28 September 2014
West Bromwich Albion v Burnley, The Hawthorns 17:00
Team P W PTS
Previous Results

Date Home Team Result Away Team

Is Louis van Gaal the right man to restore the glory days at United?

Love 2 Meet
English Premiership flutter

Take Sport24's "expert" tips at your peril...


Dave ask if you would like to meet your local sports heroes and stand the chance to win prizes to the value of over R40 000.

Latest blogs

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

Newsletters Sign up for the Morning Glory, Super 15 and Soccer newsletters

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

Mobile Sport24 on your mobile phone - WAP, alerts, downloads, services

Forum Have your Say on Sport24's brand new Forum!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

iPhone Latest Sport24 news on your iPhone

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

Blogs Yes your opinion counts. Get it out there

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.