FINAL SCORE: Liverpool 1 (Garcia 4) Chelsea 0 LIVERPOOL ARE THROUGH ON AGGREGATE 1-0.
5 Baroš (Booked, Cisse 59)
10 Luis García
(Nunez 83) 16 Hamann
(Kewell 72) 21 Traoré
25 Bišcan Subs:
10 Joe Cole (Robben 67)
14 Geremi (Huth 75)
30 Tiago (Kezman 67) Subs:
90 mins + 6. The stoppage time should be up. Referee finally blows up! LIVERPOOL ARE THROUGH!
mins + 5. Chelsea’s Gudjohnsen nearly puts Chelsea through. He misses
by inches, across the face of the goal. Has justice been done for his
90 mins + 4. Liverpool take their time over the corner Kewell loses out – throw in to Chelsea.
90 mins +3 Cisse almost gets past Cech, but doesn’t quite manage it. Liverpool corner.
mins + 2. Liverpool trying to hold on. Keeping the ball by the lines.
This is nerver-wracking stuff. Kezman brings Gerrard down and accuses
the Liverpool skipper of diving.
90 mins. Six minutes to be added on. How? There have not been six minutes of stoppages. This referee should be investigated.
mins. Liverpool break sees Cisse shot deflected inches wide. Liverpool
corner as we enter the last thirty seconds of time. Wasted.
87 mins. The ball lands into the grateful arms of Dudek.
mins. Kewell tries to hold on to the ball in the corner down at the
Anfield Road end. Chelsea win it back. These tactics aren’t what we
need to see from Liverpool.
84 mins. Match re-starts.
Luis Garcia leaves the pitch to a standing ovation. Replaced by Nunez.
There’s then a complete prat invading the pitch. Sorry – two complete
prats invading the pitch. Probably protestors – no idea what for.
mins. Kezman header almost goes in – goes out for a Chelsea corner.
Liverpool still hanging on. Cisse gets a run at goal but doesn’t quite
79 mins. Another foul by Carvalho – this time on Riise – sees him get away without being booked again.
mins. Good work by Kewell leads to a Liverpool throw near the area,
which leads to a header on target from Cisse. Too weak though, in
Liverpool’s first real chance to attack for a long time tonight.
76 mins. Jamie Carragher makes yet another interception – again from Robben.
mins. Huth is brought on for Chelsea in place of Geremi. All Chelsea’s
substitutions have been used. Huth (a centre back) has been put up
front by Chelsea.
74 mins. Robben looked set to score until
Carragher blocked his shot. Liverpool under the cosh. Robben has
another shot – goes over. Liverpool need to get hold of the ball in
73 mins. Reds free kick as Carvalho gets away without being booked. Cleared.
72 mins. Kewell comes on for Hamman.
mins. Kewell looks to be getting ready to come on – twenty minutes to
go and Liverpool are not getting any opportunities to take the ball
into Chelsea’s half.
67 mins. Double substitution for Chelsea – Kezman replaces Tiago. Arjen Robben replaces Joe Cole.
mins. Chelsea free kick, 25-30 yards out. Lampard hits it and Dudek
brilliantly tips it round the post for a corner to Chelsea. Corner
63 mins. Lampard penalised for handball. On the halfway line.
mins. Cisse’s first contrbiution is to conced a free-kick in the centre
circle. Cleared. Then the referee gives Chelsea a free kick for hanball
by Riise (despite ignoring more obvious one from Chelsea in the first
half). Free kick 25-30 yards out. Drogba hits it over the bar to the
delight of the home fans.
59 mins. Rafa Benitez sees the problem
with Baros being alone up front under these circumstances – and
replaces Baros with Djibril Cisse.
55 mins. Liverpool still having
to defend heavily – they are defending very well, but aren’t able to
quite manage a counter-attack. Baros isn’t quite the right type of
player to be up front alone in these circumstances.
Chelsea free-kick – eventually cleared for a Chelsea corner. Cleared,
then Traore fouled by Gudjohnsen (rugby style). Gudjohnsen actually was
then a victim of his own roughness – he got caught on his head as he
fell. A bleeding wound means he’s to leave the field until it’s closed
47 mins. John Arne Riise shoots at goal but doesn’t get good contact and it goes wide.
Second half gets underway – no changes to the two teams. Chelsea now attacking the Kop end.
Half-time score – Liverpool 1 Chelsea 0
Liverpool got off to a great start when Luis Garcia put them in front
after 4 minutes. The ball crossed the line according to the Slovakian
linesman although it was a close thing. If the goal ends up the decider
in this game it will be talked about for years to come. The official on
the field meanwhile has favoured the blue team whenever there’s been a
decision to make. This referee was involved when Porto – managed by
Mourinho – won the UEFA Cup against Chelsea in 2003. All 50-50
decisions have gone Chelsea’s way. The only booking so far was for
Milan Baros. If the referee had been consistent, the Chelsea team would
have got two bookings at least, including one for Joe Cole who brought
Carragher down to prevent a Liverpool breakaway.
The goal had come from an incident where Petr Cech clearly hacked down
Milan Baros. The referee was probably relieved that Garcia scored
before he had to make a decision on a penalty. If the penalty had been
awarded, Petr Cech would have had to receive a red card. These are
incidents that make games controversial – any complaints from Chelsea
about how it shouldn’t have been a goal will be met with the argument
that if the referee had blown up for the penalty – as it clearly was –
and Chelsea would have been playing 86 minutes with 10 men.
One thing that’s often pointed out on TV coverage of controversial
incidents is how players react. Luis Garcia peeled away and celebrated
in front of the Kop immediately – and there were few complaints from
Chelsea. Generally speaking players give things away in the split
second after an incident takes place.
Now it’s down to Rafael Benitez to ensure his players do something that
they didn’t quite manage in Cardiff, and that’s to hold on to the one
goal lead for the second half. In Cardiff an early John Arne Riise goal
was cancelled out by an own goal from Gerrard. Lucky for Chelsea, who
then beat a very tired Liverpool in extra time. No extra time will be
played tonight though. A win for Liverpool and they are through – any
other result and they are out. Mourinho was said to have roasted his
players at half-time in the Premiership on Saturday, when they came out
to win 2-0 against Bolton and took the title.
Gerrard, Biscan and Hamman have played very well in midfield. The only
worrying moment from midfield came when Garcia tried to take too much
time and too many touches two yards outside Liverpool’s area, and it
almost allowed Chelsea to equalise.
Carragher has kept Drogba at bay throughout the first half, but this
referee won’t allow him any room for mistakes, and Carra doesn’t want a
45 mins: Tiago slaps Garcia in the face, Reds free kick from halfway. Goes out for Chelsea throw.
45 mins: 1 minute to be added.
mins: Important that Liverpool hold on until half-time without
conceding. Liverpool could do with another goal, but are not in the
mood to take any great chances.
40 mins: Drogba has been unable to
get the better of Carragher all night and now goes down. Ref calls a
halt to the game so Drogba can be treated. Not a welcome move for the
Reds fans. Drogba back on hobbling.
38 mins: Chelsea corner. Ball
seemed to come off the Chelsea player – controversial if it leads to a
goal. Ball cleared. Eventually goes out for Liverpool throw, but near
Red’s 18 yard box.
34 mins: Thunderous atmosphere at Anfield.
Chelsea now attacking more and more, Liverpool only getting occasional
chances to counter. Referee is giving all 50-50 decisions Chelsea’s
way. He’s from Slovakia.
33 mins: John Terry clatters Milan Baros, who gets a facial injury. Ref ignores the foul.
27 mins: Blatant handball missed by the officials from John Terry on the edge of the box. Game opening up.
26 mins: Drogba shot saved by Dudek at the other end almost immediately.
25 mins: Shot from Hamman from outside the box almost catches Cech out.
18 mins: Chelsea getting more of the ball, Liverpool unable to keep possession as well as they’d like to.
7 mins: Referee books Milan Baros for minor foul. Doesn’t bode well for those on yellow cards.
4 mins: Goal!!! Luis Garcia
scores for Liverpool. Ball was ruled over the line despite last gasp
Chelsea clearance. Baros had been brought down by Petr Cech just before
the goal, but ref played advantage. Liverpool 1 Chelsea 0.
0 mins. Match kicks off, Liverpool attacking the Kop end.