Liverpool thrash Norwich
Luis Suarez (Gallo Images)
Liverpool - Luis Suarez put aside the latest controversial episode in his checkered Liverpool career by doing what he does best, scoring in the team's 5-0 thrashing of Norwich in the Premier League on Saturday.
The Uruguay striker made the headlines for the wrong reasons this week by admitting he dived in a match against Stoke at the start of the season, earning a rebuke from manager Brendan Rodgers.
However, he remains invaluable on the pitch for Liverpool and after helping set up Jordan Henderson for a well-taken opener in 26th minute at Anfield, Suarez grabbed his 16th goal of the campaign 10 minutes later.
Daniel Sturridge — with his third goal in three games — Steven Gerrard and Ryan Bennett's own goal completed the rout in the second half.
Norwich has been a compliant opponent for Liverpool — conceding 13 goals in their last three meetings — and this latest win lifted the hosts provisionally to within three points of fifth-place Everton, which occupies the final European spot for next season.
Suarez has particularly enjoyed playing the Canaries, with his goal taking his tally to seven in three matches against the club. He is now one behind Manchester United striker Robin van Persie in the Premier League's scoring charts.
Liverpool's recent resurgence was stopped in its tracks by United in a 2-1 loss at Old Trafford last weekend but Rodgers' side reacted well here.
After Suarez wriggled past a couple of defenders, the ball broke to Henderson, who finished powerfully from just outside the area.
Sturridge then provided a clever dummy to allow Lucas' pass from midfield run behind the Norwich defense and Suarez pounced, slotting a left-footed shot into the bottom corner.
Two goals behind at halftime and being completely outclassed, the second half was a damage limitation exercise for Norwich but the visitors fell further behind when Downing crossed for Sturridge to tap in at the far post in the 59th. Sturridge has now scored in all three games he has played for the Reds.
Gerrard slammed a 25-yard effort into the bottom corner for 4-0 and Bennett deflected in substitute Raheem Sterling's shot to wrap up a convincing win.