Saturday, December 22, 2007

Liverpool 4-1 Portsmouth

After three defeats from our last four (two in the Premiership) it was important to get back to winning ways. Portsmouth can be a pretty tough team, both at home and away (like us they have a better away record this season), but today they didn't put up too much opposition. Benitez seems to have more or less settled on a strongest line up (given current injuries) of Reina; Arbeloa, Carra, Hyypia, Riise; Benayoun, Gerrard, Mascherano, Kewell; Torres, Kuyt - and it's arguably paying dividends, though the return of Alonso (and, hopefully, soon Finnan, Agger and Pennant) may disrupt things.

Benayoun scored the first after about ten minutes and that was soon followed when Torres was dispossessed but the ball bounced off Distin and into the net for an unfortunate own goal. Thje 2-0 half-time lead looked fairly comfortable but, as ever, the next goal was important and it went to Portsmouth, Benjani pulling them back into the match just before the hour. Thankfully it didn't take too long for Torres to restore the two-goal cushion, after a bursting run from super-sub Babel resulted in a shot/cross James couldn't hold. A late fourth from Torres underlined both our superiority and his class.

Derby up next - no time to be complacent but, to be honest, I hope we rest a few key players (possibly benching Gerrard and/or Torres, with Alonso and Babel to take the places).

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