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Barca dealing with Copa drama

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By ESPN Staff

Allen: Draw was bittersweet

Joe Allen reflected on a "brilliant" game after his Liverpool side drew 2-2 with Premier League champions Manchester City.

• Liverpool 2-2 Man City

Wales midfielder Allen, making his Anfield debut, impressed as Brendan Rodgers' side twice took the lead against City. Crucially, though, they twice lost it, with Yaya Toure and Carlos Tevez responding to goals from Martin Skrtel and Luis Suarez.

"It was pretty frantic. It was a brilliant game for the neutral and it was great to go ahead twice, so we're disappointed not to win the game," he told Sky Sports 1. "Bittersweet probably sums it up perfectly."

The draw came eight days after the Reds' opening-day humbling at West Brom. Anticipation was naturally high at that point, with Rodgers in the dugout for the first time, but Liverpool were crushed 3-0.

"We knew we would bounce back," Allen added. "We put that behind us and we will look to kick on from here."

There was a clash of styles on show, with City's three-at-the-back powerhouse approach going up against a new, slick-looking Liverpool.

"Playing three at the back is not something many teams do," Allen said. "We had to make changes to deal with it and for the first 15 minutes we struggled to get to grips with them.

"We play three in the middle and we didn't chance too much. Personally for me it was fantastic to make my debut and it was a great occasion and atmosphere."

Rodgers felt the Reds deserved the three points.

He said: "The best team didn't win. I thought we were outstanding, playing against a top side. Once we managed that first ten minutes, tactically the players were terrific.

"The players' attitude and application has been great. We have shown great resilience. We had a one-off day last week."

Rodgers had words of support for Skrtel, whose bullet header for the opening goal was the highlight of a fine display marred by his costly error.

He said: "Martin Skrtel was immense. I commend the courage. The easy thing is to smash it up the pitch. For us to dominate games, we need players to have the courage to have the ball."

On Allen's performance, Rodgers said: "The Liverpool supporters will enjoy watching this kid play football. We paid £15 million but I said when he came in that price will double. Some people probably laughed."

Rodgers also hopes to add to his squad this week.

"We just need help," he said. "We lost players in the summer and we need to bring in players to replace those."

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