Win Over Rabotnicki Means Trip To Trabzon
Gerrard more than pleased the home crowd...
Liverpool notched up their first Anfield win of the season last night after they put two past Rabotnicki in their Europa League clash. A lively Anfield despite it not being a sell out provided all of the atmosphere as the away support was minimal. Chants from the kop gave a great welcoming taster of the famous atmosphere to new signings Joe Cole and Milan Jovanovic.
The side fielded by Roy was a real mixture of experience, youth and players who wouldn't always get a chance to shine. With Reina's understudy Cavalieri in goal it was Kelly, Carragher, Skrtel and Glen Johnson who made up the defence.
Jovanovic, Lucas and Gerrard made up the three man centre with Joe Cole chosen to sit behind the two front men: Pacheco and Ngog.
Liverpool got stuck in immediately and were strong even without the ball. Possession was great and the lads were playing with confidence. David Ngog notably who had two superb chances to get on the score sheet very early on took one too many touches and missed his chance.
It didn't take long for the Frenchman to convert an effort though after Joe Cole whipped in a lovely ball, the young forward connected perfectly with a great header and sent the Reds to a one nil lead.
The pressure continued from Liverpool, the Macedonians were constantly pushed back into their own areas and defending was top of their to do list. Their best chance in the first half was a shot from Dos Santos which flew way over the cross bar.
Glen Johnson was providing a lot of threatening forward runs and had a great game but it was the other full back that most fans had their eyes on with Martin Kelly putting in a superb performance. His barriers seemed to break down as he got more comfortable, by 70minutes he was pushing forward a lot more and got right stuck in towards the end with a last ditch block that prevented Cavalieri from ruining his clean sheet.
Liverpool's second goal also came courtesy of David Ngog, pulled down by Fernando Lopes in the box, the challenge resulted in a penalty for the lads. Step up Steven Gerrard, precision penalty. 2-0.
The game was dead and buried but this by no means meant Liverpool were going to relax. One player in terms of work ethic who really impressed me was Milan Jovanovic, he was running round like a mad dog, constantly chasing down lost causes. Fantastic hour or so for the new Serbian.
Alberto Aquilani also made an appearance putting in a respectable stint in the Steven Gerrard role. Maxi Rodriguez also put in a show along with academy star Jay Spearing.
A nice comfortable win for Liverpool and after the draw today we will now face Trabzonspor in Turkey. A memorable country for most Liverpool fans and i think we will all agree a winnable tie for the lads.