Gerrard 62, Benayoun 70
Wolverhampton Wonderers 0
Having not got round to subscribing to EPSN yet, or wanting to, there was no option for this game but to enact a welcome escape from the highly dubious tea time combination of cold turkey sandwiches and Chitty Chitty Bang Bang and head for the welcoming, warm embrace of the pub!
Strangely enough the landlord for some reason opted to show pictures from ESPN but gave us the Five Live commentary on top. What a bloated, self important, snide little man Alan Green is. Once again we were forced to hear his egotistical, self promoting nonsense as if this was the reason we’d switched him on and not the match. We heard about the snow were he lives and the BBC’s ingratitude towards when he, poor little lamb, had to commentate on two games in one day. Many accuse Green of being a Liverpool fan but this doesn’t stop him pouring vitriol on the team. He is in the media so he should mention our situation but there are ways of doing it and Green can’t do it without you wanting to smack him, hard! It’s not just us, it seems to be every team sadly Green will be disappointed if he ever thinks the “perfect team” is going to materialise. However, in his mind, when he’s not thinking about himself, such a team seems to exist and everyone is judged by it, after all it’s always easier to criticise than praise? These days Green consistently spoils my enjoyment of the radio commentary, he always sounds overly tired and overly cynical, like he doesn’t want to be at the game and boy I wish he wasn’t.
So to yesterday and the most important thing is the result which was achieved with a competent(ish) performance but not fanfare of thrills. The sending off of Wolves’ Ward certainly helped, before that we’d not been any great shakes. However, perhaps, when Benayoun had sealed the game with our second, we could have gone on to boost the confidence and scored more? It was not to be and I guess one had to be sensible, with Aston Villa lying in wait later in the week, caution was the watch word?
Rafa gave Aquilani his first premiership start yet perhaps surprisingly put him in a holding midfield role, may be he will have a more offensive part once he has regained match fitness? Kuyt, our unsung ever resilient workhouse, was given a well deserved rest.
I thought the first half was nothing special and Wolves gave as good as they got. It was a typical away team performance they let us have the ball were we couldn’t do any harm but in the last third swarmed over us, which we didn’t really get to grips with. However, they were not without their moments at the other end of the field via Doyle and Ebanks Blake.
Ward’s needless sending off, for a tackle on Lucas having hauled Benayoun down before, disrupted all that. Had referee Andre Marriner been left to his own devices Wolves would still have had eleven man as he clearly had no idea that it was Ward who committed the foul. Eventually, but not without embarrassment and lots of help, he arrived at the right decision. All a bit cr*p really. Gerrard who had earlier forced a good save out of Hahnemann, eventually exploited the situation by powerfully heading home Insua’s cross, a good response to Rafa’s midweek comments about him? Benayoun made it safe with an easy chance from about eight yards after picking up a deflected cross.
A good win but it was struggle until Wolves went down to ten men. Gerrard looked closer to player we know he can be. Torres, despite fading badly in the second half, will be better for another match and Aquilani had a tidy game easing himself in gently. However, there is still a lot to do. Wolves can perhaps consider themselves unlucky that the sending off disrupted their rhythm. In short we will need to be better if we’re going to get anything at Villa? The Wolves have gone but we not out of the woods yet!
Liverpool: Reina, Johnson, Agger, Aurelio (Kuyt 76), Insua, Carragher, Aquilani (Pacheco 84), Gerrard, Benayoun (Spearing 88), Lucas, Torres Substitutes: Cavalieri, Darby, Skrtel, Spearing, Kuyt, Ngog, Pacheco
Wolverhampton: Hahnemann, Stearman, Craddock, Ward, Berra, Foley, Henry, Jarvis, Milijas (Mancienne 62), Ebanks-Blake (Iwelumo 66), Doyle (Elokobi 58) Substitutes: Hennessey, Elokobi, Mancienne, Surman, Castillo, Iwelumo, Maierhofer
Att: 41, 956