Sunday, January 22, 2006

Man USA 1-0 Liverpool

As the old saying goes, we was robbed.

I’m just back from watching the game at my friend Rob’s, and still disappointed to lose to a 90th minute goal. I just knew when the commentators started going on about how Liverpool don’t concede many like that and so on that we were going to, and at the cruellest of times… Don’t get me wrong, if Pongolle had scored two minutes earlier, I’d have been delighted – but also man enough to admit it would’ve been harsh in a game hard fought but low on chances and that neither side really deserved to win.

Unfortunately too many Liverpool attacks – almost all of them in fact – broke down with Cisse. Perhaps he was slightly unlucky to have a shot cleared off the line by Rio around the hour mark, but even then he got a rebound and ballooned it over from five yards with an open goal. I really think Baros might well have offered more to our team. Sure, he’s wasteful when actually through on goal, but all about work-rate and ball chasing.

Predictably we had the better of midfield, and for long periods more possession, but we weren’t able to dominate as completely as I’d hoped – largely because of Giggs having a good game in central midfield. A lot of the time, United seemed content to play on the counter attack, but in fairness they probably had more good chances than we did.

Our best chance – other than Cisse’s miss – was probably when Pongolle broke just before the end. I think Rooney was lucky to only get yellow – maybe it shouldn’t have been red, but it certainly could have been. Ok, Rooney wasn’t last man, but it was a two-footed tackle from behind, that took player and not ball, when Pongolle was in a good position… Knowing Rooney, I’m prepared to believe it was a rush of blood rather than calculated, but still.

And then to add insult to injury, down the other end at United score at the death. Having already saved United by clearly of the line, Rio certainly didn’t do his popularity amongst the scousers any good – and the way he, Rooney and Neville celebrated wasn’t particularly nice to see either.

Still, this only leaves us 4 points behind United with two games in hand. We may have lost the battle, but we can still win the war…

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