By jpa90, 19-01-2013, 18:12:30
Liverpool put five past Norwich City at Anfield in a very one-sided game. Jordan Henderson opened the scoring with a brilliant strike and Luis Suarez added a second before half time. Daniel Sturridge made it three goals in three games when he scored his first goal at Anfield for the Reds and Steven Gerrard added a fourth. Ryan Bennett turned the ball into his own net from Raheem Sterling’s shot, topping off a miserable fay for Norwich.
|Norwich fell behind when Henderson smashed a ferocious volley past Mark Bunn, giving Liverpool a deserved lead. Sturridge was making his home debut alongside fellow striker Suarez and Anfield will have been extremely pleased to see the two link up for the second, with Suarez claiming his 16th goal of the season.
With Liverpool firmly in the driving seat, Norwich’s poor start to the game only got worse. Sturridge scored a tap in to continue his fantastic form for the Reds and Gerrard’s low effort from 25 yards put the Reds four goals to the good. The visitors had a torrid afternoon, compounded by Bennett’s own goal to put Liverpool 5-0 up.
The opening minutes consisted of Liverpool looking for an early lead. Sturridge was able to release a low shot after linking up well with Suarez. Mark Bunn got down well to save but Sturridge’s rapid movement off the ball was complimented by a clever knock on by Suarez.
The Uruguayan came close to opening the scoring when he played a one-two with Downing on the edge of Norwich’s area. The striker darted forwards and then released a fierce shot from a tight angle. Bunn palmed the ball away to keep the scores level but Liverpool were knocking on the door.
Suarez was teasing the Norwich defence with close control on the edge of the penalty area. Jonny Howson managed to get a foot to the ball and it bounced to Jordan Henderson in the middle. Henderson wrapped his foot around the bouncing ball 20 yards out and it swerved past Bunn and into the top-right corner, giving his side a 1-0 lead.
It had been all Liverpool before the goal and the lead was well-deserved. Norwich were having great difficulty in holding onto possession and the home side continued to pressurise the Canaries.
Sturridge located Suarez with a wonderful first time flick-on after receiving a quick pass from Lucas. The Uruguayan continued his run towards goal and had only the keeper to beat. Bunn rushed out of his goal but Suarez curled a low shot around him and into the bottom right side of the goal, doubling his side’s lead.
Two goals down, Norwich faced a tough task in getting back into the game. Andre Wisdom made a great clearance off the line when Grant Holt’s volley was heading goalwards. At the opposite end, Bunn stopped a low shot from Sturridge on the stroke of half time, keeping the score at 2-0. The visitors had a couple of other chances from set pieces in the first half but Jones was on hand deny them.
The second half started at a slower tempo to the first but the Reds continued to push the visitor’s back line. Gerrard’s distribution was top class as the captain was locating his teammates left, right and centre.
Norwich couldn’t handle Liverpool’s passing and movement in attack. Henderson looped a ball over the defence to find Downing on the right side of the penalty area. Downing played a precise first time cross between Bunn and the Norwich defenders, locating Sturridge with an easy tap-in from three yards.
Liverpool were still not finished as they strode past lacklustre Norwich challenges. Johnson paced into the visitor’s half with ease and squared the ball to Gerrard. The midfielder turned and found an angle from 25 yards. He released a low and powerful shot which crept into the bottom left corner, putting the Reds 4-0 up.
Things went from bad to worse for Norwich when substitute Raheem Sterling knocked the ball past Michael Turner. Sterling beat Bunn with his shot and Bennett’s last-ditch attempt at a clearance resulted in the defender directing the ball into his own net.
Chris Hughton will have been disgusted at his team’s closing down as they let the home side cruise through them on several occasions. Liverpool put in a top performance in every area of the pitch and punished an extremely poor Norwich. Liverpool move up to 7th in the Premier League table whilst Norwich fall to 13th, claiming just one point from their last six games.
Kopworld man of the match: Steven Gerrard