Liverpool 1 – 0 QPR

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Liverpool ran out 1-0 winners over QPR on the final day of the season thanks to Philippe Coutinho’s stunning 25-yard strike, as the Anfield faithful said goodbye to club legend Jamie Carragher.


It was the 737th and final Liverpool appearance for the vice-captain, who so nearly marked the occasion with a stunning goal.The game was preceded by tributes to Carragher, with the Kop holding a mosaic in tribute and the players from both sides forming a guard of honour.

Just two minutes after kick off Coutinho was unfortunate to see his legitimate goal chalked off.

The Brazilian got his head on the end of a Stewart Downing corner, but the ball was deemed to have not crossed the line. Replays show that the match officials got the decision wrong.

As Liverpool fans have become accustomed to since his January signing, Coutinho was at the centre of everything the Reds did, and before long he did have his name on the scoresheet.

Teed up by Jordon Ibe – making a very impressive debut for the club – Coutinho wasted little time before firing an unstoppable 25-yard drive that flew past the outstretched arm of Robert Green and into the corner of the goal.

Liverpool maintained pressure on the visitors for the remainder of the half, but the score remained at 1-0 going into the break.

Just as they had done in the first half, the Reds troubled the visitors’ backline immediately after kick-off.


The first blow in an onslaught on the QPR goal came from Jose Enrique when the Spaniard’s deflected 25-yard drive was parried away by Green.

A minute later Ibe came close to marking his debut with a stunning goal. The winger moved inside from the left flank before firing a shot that flashed across the face of goal.

Next up was Glen Johnson, with a powerful shot that deflected off a defender towards the top corner, forcing the QPR ‘keeper to change direction and palm the danger away.

Shortly after the Kop held it’s collective breath, as Carragher looked to finish his Liverpool career in style.

The defender hadn’t scored a Liverpool goal in 7 years, but when the ball fell at his feet 25 yards from goal, Carragher quickly turned and hit a beautifully struck long-range drive that was only inches away from finding the top corner – instead smashing back off the post.

The Reds poured forward in search of a second goal to secure the result and end the season on a high.

With the match drawing to a close, Carragher was replaced by Sebastian Coates. The defender exited the pitch to a standing ovation from both the home and away fans and even the press box was on their feet – a mark of just how highly regarded he is in the game.

The final minutes heard echoes of ‘we all dream of a team of Carraghers’ ringing round Anfield, as well as a cheeky chant of ‘one more year’ that was started up.

Despite some good pressure in the closing exchanges the Reds were unable to find a second goal, and the game finished 1-0 to bring an end to the 2012/12 campaign along with the career of an Anfield legend.


Fulham 1 – 3 Liverpool

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Liverpool ran out 3-1 winners over Fulham at Craven Cottage, thanks to a first Liverpool hat-trick for Daniel Sturridge.

Sturridge levelled the scores in the first half after Dimitar Berbatov had opened the scoring for the home side. He then went on to put Fulham to the sword with two strikes in the second half.The game started off in fairly quiet fashion, with the Reds seeing more of the ball but creating few opportunities. The best chances fell to Sturridge – who hooked his shot across the front of goal after doing well to create space – and Philippe Coutinho, who saw his shot palmed away by Mark Schwarzer.

Despite Liverpool’s dominance of the opening exchanges, it was Fulham who scored first. Dimitar Berbatov was left unmarked in the box, and met Sascha Riether’s cross with with a header into the corner of Pepe Reina’s goal shortly after the half-hour mark.

The lead lasted all of three minutes though, as Liverpool fought back immediately.

A long ball up the pitch by Andre Wisdom was brought under control well by Sturridge in the Fulham box, who slipped past Aaron Hughes before rifling a powerful shot into the roof of the net that left Schwarzer with no chance of getting to it.


The Reds went in level at the break, but looking the more likely to score. After a fairly quiet start to the second half the game sprung into action on the hour mark.

First Fulham fans were left furious when their side was denied a penalty after claims that Lucas had handled the ball in the box. Replays showed that the ball did hit the Brazilian on the arm, but the ball was fired from close range at pace, so there were reasonable arguments for both sides.

Seconds later and the Reds were in front as they broke quickly from defence to attack. Coutinho’s shot was deflected into the path of Sturridge, leaving the frontman to side-foot home for both his and Liverpool’s second goal of the afternoon.

The goal was followed by a good spell of pressure from the Reds, with Schwarzer saving well twice to deny Sturridge his third. After a while Fulham started to get back into the game though, with Reina forced into action a couple of times – most notably with a fine save from a Hughes header.

Liverpool for their part though were by no means on the back foot. Fabio Borini – on as a substitute – came close twice in quick succession, first firing a shot from the edge of the box before being set through with a delightful flick from Sturridge. Both times though Schwarzer was up to the task of shutting the Italian out.

The result was finally put beyond question with five minutes remaining. As has regularly been the case since the pair signed in January, Sturridge and Coutinho combined to devastating effect – the Brazilian finding his colleague with a perfectly weighted pass, who then calmly lobbed the ball over the onrushing Schwarzer.

Liverpool 0 – 0 Everton

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Liverpool had to settle for a goalless draw with Everton in an unusually quiet Merseyside derby at Anfield.

As a result the gap between the two clubs in the league remains at five points, but with just two games remaining it is all but certain that Everton have won the battle for sixth place.As could be expected Anfield was a cauldron of noise in the build up to kick-off. Marouane Fellaini almost dampened the spirits of the home fans though on 17 minutes, when he beat Jamie Carragher to get on the end of a Leighton Baines free-kick with a shot that was narrowly off-target.

The best chance of the first half for Liverpool fell to Steven Gerrard – who was only kept out by an excellent challenge from Phil Jagielka – but beyond that clear openings for either side were few and far between.

The Reds came out for the second half with renewed vigour, and it took only three minutes after the restart to threaten the Everton goal. Philippe Coutinho and Daniel Sturridge – both playing in their first Merseyside derby – combined well, with the Brazilian playing a perfectly weighted ball through to his colleague. Sturridge rounded Tim Howard, but took the ball too wide in the process and was unable to finish.


Everton found the back of the net just before the hour mark from a corner, but the whistle had already gone for a Liverpool free kick before Sylvain Distin had met the ball with his head.

This worrying moment didn’t appear to knock Liverpool off their stride though, and they pushed forward in search of a winner.

First Coutinho tested Howard with a driven shot after Glen Johnson’s cross found it’s way through to him, but his shot was directly at the American keeper. Then Gerrard did get the better of the Everton stopper, only for Distin to be waiting behind his team-mate to clear up.

As full time approached though Liverpool seemed to be running out of ideas, and the best chance for the rest of the game fell to Daniel Agger – who failed to make proper contact with a Gerrard free-kick.

Victor Anichebe forced a good save from Pepe Reina as the game neared a close – with the Liverpool keeper managing to puch the Nigerian striker’s shot onto the post – but this was a rare foray forward for the visitors in a second half that was only marginally more interesting than the first.

Ultimately both defences held firm to ensure an even share of the spoils. Not very often it can be said of the Merseyside derby – but this was one to forget!

Rodgers not interested in Fair Play Euro spot

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Brendan Rodgers insists he wants Liverpool to qualify for Europe, but not via the route of the Fair Play league.

The Reds have a slim chance of being involved in next season’s Europa League via the fair play route, the system that involves Uefa offering a qualifying spot to one club in each of Europe’s top three fairest leagues. England are currently in fourth place behind Finland, Sweden and Norway but should the Premier League’s position improve over the final weeks of the season it will be Liverpool that are offered the place.

Rodgers however would prefer not to go down that route.

“I’ve never thought of it, maybe we should get a couple of sendings-off or bookings,” he told the Daily Mirror.pics-image-6-684339798-2588902[1]

“There’s a pride thing and we want to get into it with our performance level and it’s highly unlikely we’d get that route [anyway].

“It’s the top three countries and we’re fourth. It’s not something I would be keen on. I want to get there through the right means.

“If we have to have a year where we are not in it, it’s going to give us an opportunity to push on.

“It was a long journey in the Europa League this year. Don’t get me wrong, we enjoyed it and we were disappointed when we came out of it, but I think down the Fair Play route means the competition starts even earlier.

“I’d prefer to be in it by qualifying through the league or winning a trophy.

“If it’s not that way then, we as a club are better suited to re-aligning our focus to domestic cups and the league.”

Newcastle United 0 – 6 Liverpool

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Well what a week it has been.  A very difficult week with what happened in the last game and the clubs and Brendans stance on the incident.  Suarez to his credit didnt contest the ban which was very severe so an away game against Newcastle was the last thing we needed after this week, or so we thought.

Liverpool started very brightly and were spraying the ball around and Newcastle looked nervous, understandably after the defeat at hope against their bitter rivals only a week ago.  It didnt take long for Liverpool to take the lead when from a corner Newcastle pushed out but the ball was swung back in from Downing and Agger timed his run to perfection heading passed a helpless Elliot who could do nothing to prevent the goal.Sturridge was almost in in the 11th minute but he was wrongly flagged for offside but the keeper pulled off a self defence save.  Tiote no stranger to violent conduct himself fouled Sturridge and proceeded to rake down his leg but the referee didn’t see it.  A brilliant move sore the impressive Coutinho hit a pass with the outside of his right foot into the run of Sturridge who unselfishly squared to Henderson to knock into an open goal.

Newcastle were being run ragged and Gutierrez pulled down Sturridge, Taylor then got booked for another foul on Sturridge. Johnson the got booked for the reds was booked in an innocuous looking challenge.  The reds lead 2-0 at half time.

Newcastle came out of the blocks very well after bringing on Ben Arfa and Gouffran coming on for Gutierrez and Perch making way.  Newcastle were putting pressure on the reds putting the ball in the box but the reds defence held firm.  Liverpool broke with speed with the impressive Coutinho seeming to dally on the ball only to play a delightful through ball to Sturridge to smash high into the net to give the reds a 3-0 lead.  A lot of Geordies made for the exit and Pardew looked in despair with good reason for what was about to follow.

Newcastle did have a good shot on goal from Ben Arfa and the ball hit Lucas on the arm but a penalty was not awarded which was the correct decision as Henderson couldn’t get out of the way of the ball.  Liverpool were in fine form and were 4-0 from another Sturridge goal as he even had time to take a touch before knocking it into an empty net and Newcastle were visibly crushed, Henderson the provider.
Anita came on for Tiote for the bar codes as he was looking like he would get sent off.

Borini was brought on for the reds for Gerrard and didn’t take long to make his mark.  He toe poked the ball past the keeper for his first league goal after some good play from Downing.

If things couldn’t get any worse for Newcastle, the ball was played to left side of the box to Coutinho who put the ball passed Debuchy who sighted him down and was shown a second yellow and sent off.  Newcastle were then further punished as Henderson scored his 2nd direct from the free kick with the ball evading everyone in the box and finding its way into the net.

Coutinho desperately wanted to get a goal smashed a rasper from 25 ywards but Elliot forced it onto the bar with a strong hand, shortly after being replaced by Suso and Sturridge taken off to be replaced by Shelvey.  The game ended with Liverpool acting like it was a training session and keeping possession to record their biggest away victory of the season and to put the last week out of their memories.  The derby to follow next…..

Suarez won’t appeal ban

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Luis Suarez has decided not to appeal the ten game ban handed down to him for biting Chelsea defender Branislav Ivanovic last Sunday.

A statement on his personal Facebook page has highlighted what he believes to be inconsistencies in his and “past cases where players have actually been seriously injured”.

“I decided to accept the ban because, whilst 10 games is clearly greater than bans given in past cases where players have actually been seriously injured, I acknowledge that my actions were not acceptable.”Liverpool v Chelsea - Premier League

“I hope all the people I have offended will grant me forgiveness and I repeat my personal apology to Branislav.”

“I know all the things happening to me in England will help me improve my conduct on the field.”

“I decided to accept the ban because, whilst 10 games is clearly greater than bans given in past cases where players have actually been seriously injured, I acknowledge that my actions were not acceptable.”

“I do not want to give the wrong impression to people by making an appeal.”

Suarez was previously banned for eight games for racially abusing Patrice Evra of Manchester United in late 2011 and will now not be seen playing for Liverpool until the back end of September.

“I really want to learn from what has happened in the last two-and-a-half years. Many things have been said and written about me, I just tried to do my best on the field.”

Could this be the catalyst for Suarez to leave Anfield?

Suarez banned for ten games

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Luis Suarez has been banned for ten games by the FA, with the FA releasing the following statement:

“A three-person independent regulatory commission today upheld the FA’s claim that a suspension of three matches was clearly insufficient and the player will serve a further seven first-team matches in addition to the standard three. The suspension begins with immediate effect.

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“The Liverpool forward had accepted a charge of violent conduct but had denied the FA’s claim that the standard three-match sanction was insufficient for the offence.

“The incident was not seen by the match officials and has therefore been retrospectively reviewed.

“Suarez has until midday on Friday 26 April to appeal [against] the additional suspension, above the standard three matches.”

Carroll wants to fight for place at Anfield

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Striker Andy Carroll reportedly does not see his future with loan team West Ham United, or former club Newcastle United. The striker wants to return to Liverpool and fight for a place in the side, according to reports in Newcastle local paper The Chronicle.

“Andy is realistic about next season. He is n4ot expecting to be at Newcastle or West Ham… He’s prepared to go back to Liverpool and fight for his place.” said a source said to be close to the player.article-2093698-117F818E000005DC-458_468x327[1]

Carroll has picked up his form in recent months, having scored five goals in his last nine games for West Ham. He has been linked with a permanent move to the club in the press with a £10m move mooted.

Brendan Rodgers has dropped various hints recently that he could be open to Carroll returning should insufficient offers come in for the tall frontman, but it seems highly likely that the Northern Irishman would prefer to move on the Geordie forward.

Suarez accepts bite charge

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Liverpool striker Luis Suarez has accepted a charge of violent conduct from the Football Association for biting Chelsea’s Branislav Ivanovic.

The case is being heard today and the striker is facing a hefty ban – which he has stated he does not feel he deserves and that three games is sufficient punishment.

A statement issued on Tuesday stated: “Suarez has denied the FA’s claim that the standard punishment of three matches is clearly insufficient for this offence.”

“The incident was not seen by the match officials and has therefore been retrospectively reviewed. An independent regulatory commission will hear the case tomorrow.”2013-04-23T182549Z_1_CBRE93M1F7500_RTROPTP_2_SOCCER-ENGLAND-SUAREZ-CHARGE[1]

The three man commission will meet via videolink to discuss written transcripts from Suarez himself and by the FA.

Following the incident, the 26-year-old Suarez apologised for biting Ivanovic and spoke to the Chelsea player personally to say sorry.

The club have internally punished Suarez with a fine, which he requested by given to the HJC, but Ian Ayre has said that he expects Suarez to remain with the club into next season.

Suarez has been charged for biting an opponent before. He was banned for seven games when playing for Ajax. He bit PSV Eindhoven midfielder Otman Bakkal on the shoulder during a match in November 2010 – which drew blood from the player, unlike Sunday’s altercation.

Suarez has previously received an eight game ban and £40,000 fine for racially abusing Manchester United defender Patrice Evra.

Liverpool to honour Steven Gerrard with testamonial match

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Liverpool FC have announced that Steven Gerrard will be honoured with a testimonial match this summer, with the proceeds from the match being donated to charity.

Greek champions Olympiacos will be the opponents for the clash – the only pre-season game to be played at Anfield this summer – on Saturday, August 3rd at 2pm.

Money raised from the game will be for donated the Steven Gerrard Foundation. The charitable organisation – established in February 2011 – helps young people from under-privileged backgrounds.gerrard_2934410[1]

Olympiacos have confirmed that will also be donating their appearance fee to charity – opting to support local charities in Greece.

The last time Liverpool & Gerrard faced Olympiacos it was a memorable occasion of course. A stunning strike from the captain at Anfield in 2004 saw Liverpool come from behind to beat the Greek side 3-1 and progress to the next stage of the Champions League – with the Reds ultimately winning the competition that season.

Gerrard said: “I am delighted to be honoured by Liverpool with a testimonial match and particularly thrilled that Olympiacos have accepted my invitation to play the fixture. Last time we met proved to be such a memorable game both for me personally and Liverpool Football Club.

“I am also especially grateful that Olympiacos have truly embraced the aim of this match and chosen to donate their fee to charity. I am looking forward to what I know will be a fantastic game and a wonderful occasion.”