English Premiership

Liverpool crash to Villa defeat

2014-09-13 20:59
Brendan Rodgers (AFP)

Liverpool - Gabriel Agbonlahor's early goal gave Aston Villa an unexpected 1-0 victory over Liverpool in the Premier League on Saturday that continued their recent impressive record at Anfield.

Villa have not lost at the ground since December 2010 and despite being camped in their own half for long periods, they were arguably deserved winners.

Agbonlahor scrambled home the decisive goal in the ninth minute of the game and although Liverpool dominated the remainder of the match, they only once forced Villa goalkeeper Brad Guzan to make a save.

Liverpool handed a full debut to midfielder Adam Lallana, while Mario Balotelli made his first appearance at Anfield with fellow striker Daniel Sturridge ruled out by a thigh injury.

Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers had spoken before the match about the need to "protect" Raheem Sterling from burn out. The in-form youngster was left on the bench, with Lazar Markovic and Philippe Coutinho expected to carry the hosts' creative threat.

Aston Villa were without captain Ron Vlaar, who had failed to recover from a calf injury, so Nathan Baker partnered Philippe Senderos in defence, while on-loan Manchester United midfielder Tom Cleverley made his debut.

Liverpool began purposefully and created the first opening in the seventh minute when Javier Manquillo crossed from the right flank for the unmarked Markovic, who weakly headed wide from a good position.

However, it was the visitors who took the lead from an Ashley Westwood corner shortly afterwards as Villa punished some sloppy Liverpool defending.

Westwood's cross was met by the head of Senderos and the ball dropped for Agbonlahor, who reacted quickest to bundle home from close range.

Midfielder Westwood posed a threat with his delivery from set-pieces and Villa should have added a second goal when Senderos got on the end of his free-kick, only to head over.

Liverpool dominated possession in the remainder of the first half, but despite their neat passing, they struggled to penetrate a disciplined Villa back-line.

Lallana seized on a knockdown from Jordan Henderson on the half-hour mark, but Senderos made a vital block from just inside the penalty area.

The former Southampton playmaker went close again when he arrowed a long-range effort just past the post, while Alberto Moreno was sent clear on the stroke of half-time, only to see his low cross cut out.

Villa packed men behind the ball in the second half and Rodgers reacted with the introduction of Sterling for Lallana just after the hour.

The England international was quickly into the action and Villa right-back Alan Hutton was fortunate to only escape with a yellow card when he scythed the youngster down.

Despite Sterling's extra zest and energy, Rodgers added further firepower with the introduction of Rickie Lambert and Fabio Borini for Balotelli and Markovic.

Villa were content to sit on what they had and look to hit Liverpool on the counter-attack, and the hosts grew increasingly frustrated as the clock ticked down.

Coutinho seized on an opening with eight minutes to go and saw a low drive bounce back off the post with Guzan beaten, but Villa held on to secure a win that sent them up to second place behind leaders Chelsea.


LIVE: Everton v Swansea

2017-12-18 21:50

What To Read Next


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
Comments have been closed for this article.
Live Video Streaming
Video Highlights
Sport Talk

Monday, 18 December 2017
Everton v Swansea City, Goodison Park 22:00
Friday, 22 December 2017
Arsenal v Liverpool, Emirates Stadium 21:45
Saturday, 23 December 2017
Everton v Chelsea, Goodison Park 14:30
Stoke City v West Bromwich Albion, Bet365 Stadium 17:00
Manchester City v AFC Bournemouth, Etihad Stadium 17:00
Swansea City v Crystal Palace, Liberty Stadium 17:00
West Ham United v Newcastle United, London Stadium 17:00
Southampton v Huddersfield Town, St. Mary's Stadium 17:00
Brighton & Hove Albion v Watford, The American Express Community Stadium 17:00
Burnley v Tottenham Hotspur, Turf Moor 19:30
Leicester City v Manchester United, King Power Stadium 21:45
Team P W PTS
Previous Results

Date Home Team Result Away Team

Who will claim the Premier League title at the end of the 2017/18 season?

Love 2 Meet
Sport24 on Twitter

Follow Sport24 news on Twitter

English Premiership flutter

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


The 2017/18 Absa Premiership season is under way. Can Bidvest Wits defend their title? Will Soweto giants Kaizer Chiefs or Orlando Pirates emerge victorious? Or will the bookies' favourites, Mamelodi Sundowns, taste success for a record eighth time? Stay glued to Sport24 to find out!

Latest blogs

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

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