Sterling Strike Seals Reds Home Win
Liverpool made only one change to their side after Pepe Reina was kept out with a hamstring problem, Brad Jones took his place. Reading had ex Reds man Guthrie in their starting XI and fielded Pogrebnyak up front.
The first half was of good quality for the home side and Reading were causing minimal problems. The likes of Suso, Sahin and Sterling were linking up well and as always despite his finishing not quite being up to scratch Suarez was offering a lot in terms of attack.
Both Sterling and Suarez had chances at goal but were denied by McCarthy or sent their efforts off target. Their tenacity and freedom to easily break through the Reading defence though meant more chances would come.
Just before the 30 minute mark Luis Suarez ensured Liverpool would be in a position to put themselves ahead. A cheeky chip set up Sterling perfectly who was in the right place at the right time and with a lovely finish backed up his efforts over his past few matches to cement his presence as an upcoming star in the Liverpool side.
Shortly after Liverpool had broken the deadlock perhaps one of the funniest moments at Anfield in a while occurred. After being fouled by Gorkss Luis Suarez was left on the floor, he'd been battered all game (and we know the usual proceedings of late when Suarez is challenged) but remarkably the referee awarded Suarez a free kick.
Anfield went mental, clapping and cheering, basically having a party because finally something had gone Suarez's way, quality haha.
In the second half Reading took their chance to take more from the game, their first half was pretty weak but with Liverpool looking more and more like they needed another goal to secure the points, now was the time for Reading to pile on the pressure.
Garath McClearly became a threat for the away side and forced Brad Jones into action twice in quick succession. Liverpool's second choice goalkeeper had a good game and in fairness did enough to perhaps make Pepe Reina fight for his return.
As Liverpool reached the latter stages of the second half and Enrique and Shelvey were brought into play it did begin to get a bit desperate. We were allowing Reading to fluster us when really if we just remained calm the points would be ours.
Shots from several players in the side couldn't find their way into the back of the net but it appeared as though Suarez was getting all the stick, especially online.
I just don't understand this at all. Suarez as we have known all along is not the best finisher but he still brings goals to our game and more importantly causes complete havoc for the opposition. At this moment in time the weight of the entire fan base is on his shoulders to score, as if it wasn't already hard enough so for me people need to cut him a bit of slack.
Yes, his finishing yesterday was probably the poorest I have seen in a while but he set up the goal and very nearly got us a second. Take him out of the equation and you can guarantee yesterday's 90 minutes would have been a lot tougher.
Despite the struggle late on to maintain their lead Liverpool managed to do so and now had a home win in their tally.
A win is a win and although the game could have and should have been put to bed early on to prevent the worries towards the end we have to look at the positives in a game like this. 3 points and a clean sheet is all good in my book and with top class performances from our youngsters again we can't really moan.
One piece of advice though: Get on that finishing!