Things have reached such a state at Anfield that Liverpool fans now hail as a “good start” an extremely dodgy early goal, in which the spirit of fair play was singularly absent whatever the letter of the law may say (and always leaving aside how far Torres was from the ball when the “free kick” was “taken”). On the other hand, Turner may just have been a prat! …
In any case, Stephanie Jones, an Observer-reading Red, saw it in a positive light – her team’s start, that is, not their overall performance – in her fan’s report for her Sunday newspaper of choice.
Salut! Sunderland was again called upon to give its own verdict, but let Stephanie speak first:
It wasn’t the greatest day. We got off to a good start but after that we weren’t dynamic and we had a terrible patch when they got their two goals. The performances are a manifestation of what is going on off the pitch. This has been threatening for a long time. Last year we had a manager who kept it together but now it’s like the damn has burst. The protests after the game were encouraging. As our manager put it “a group of people”, otherwise known as the supporters, are trying to do something about the ownership. We’ve been lied to constantly and we don’t know who to trust.
And her player ratings were: Reina 7; Johnson 5, Carragher 6, Skrtel 6, Konchesky 6 (Agger 28 7); Gerrard 7, Poulsen 5 (Ngog 61 6), Meireles 6, Cole 7; Kuyt 5; Torres 7
Our own Pete Sixsmith sent a series of texts from the game …
* 1-0 down, ridiculous goal
* Bent pen
* 1-1 at haf time and better side …; Liverpool awful
* 2-1 up. Bent with great header.
* 2-2. Undeserved.
* Drew … showed real quality and deserved to win (his Sixer’s Seven)
This was how he summed it up for The Observer:
It was by far our best performance of the season and we just about deserved to shade it. Cattermole and Malbranque were outstanding – tackling well and using the ball far more effectively than their allegedly superior counterparts. Their opener is still a mystery to me but we came back really well and showed a lot of character and inner-strength. At first there was confusion about what happened with the goal but we managed to piece it together. To me it’s a fundamental refereeing error. Overall, it’s a good result, but we need to turn worthy draws into wins.
Mignolet 7; Onuoha 7, Bramble 7, Turner 7, Bardsley 8; Elmohamady 8, Henderson 7, Cattermole 8, Malbranque 8 (Riveros 88 n/a), Welbeck 6 (Gyan 81 7); Bent 7 (Zenden 90 n/a)
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