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Chelsea 2-0 Liverpool: Cautious Reds found wanting

October 4, 2009

Liverpool’s bid for a first Premier League title took what will probably be a fatal blow today at the hands of an impressive Chelsea at Stamford Bridge. Second half goals from Nicolas Anelka and Florent Malouda secured another 3 points for Carlo Ancelotti’s side, which moves them to the top of the table, 2 points clear of Manchester United.

From the outset it was clear of Liverpool’s gameplan. As is the norm with Liverpool when they travel to Stamford Bridge, they set up with a defensive outlook with the aim to contain Chelsea and look to hit them on the counter-attack. Only one goal at Stamford Bridge in the PL under Rafael Benitez suggests that that tactic probably needs a rethink.

Fernando Torres had the chance of the half for the visitors. A floated cross from the right by Dirk Kuyt was met by the Spaniard, only for his tame header to be held with comfort by Chelsea’s stand-in ‘keeper Hilario. Liverpool would go on to rue that miss, as 15 minutes into the second half Anelka struck to send the Blues fans into raptures. Javier Mascherano was guilty of losing the ball inside the Chelsea half, leaving Liverpool exposed at the back. Didier Drogba was put through by Michael Essien, before crossing for Anelka to cleverly guide home at the far post.

Things got no better for Liverpool who never looked that threatening until Florent Malouda slotted home a second for the home side in the 90th minute. Yossi Benayoun had a golden opportunity just seconds after to scrape a goal back for Liverpool, but his shot shaved the outside of Hilario’s far post.

After this defeat, it seems Liverpool’s title hopes are over. They’ll have to settle now for battling out for 4th spot along with Manchester City, Aston Villa, and the likes. As for Chelsea, moving above United in the table will give them great confidence and motivation heading into the next round of PL matches.

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5 Comments leave one →
  1. October 4, 2009 10:18 pm

    As fickle as football is – I wonder if Benitez will become the first Premiership manager sacking of the season?

  2. maserati4200 permalink
    October 5, 2009 8:57 am

    I believe that if Liverpool had had a less cautious manager over the last few years they would have been more successful.

    Fortune favours the brave.

  3. October 5, 2009 2:52 pm

    The “Battle of number 8” barely occurred as both Gerrard and Lampard were rather quiet for such an intensive night, and it was Drogba who was the MOTM, he was involved in both goals, as well as with some confrontations with Liverpool players and taking some knocks as well :)
    Seems this season will be one which can go to goal diff to designate a winner

  4. maserati4200 permalink
    October 5, 2009 4:21 pm

    Drogba was the key to Chelsea’s victory, no doubt.

    I just wish such a talented player wouldn’t fall over so much and fake injury. It’s such a shame. It used to be called…

    Answers on a postcard!

  5. October 6, 2009 3:25 am


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