Previous
CSKA Moscow
Bayern Munich
0
1
LIVE 58'
Game Details
Manchester City
AS Roma
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Apoel Nicosia
Ajax Amsterdam
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Paris Saint-Germain
Barcelona
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Schalke 04
NK Maribor
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Sporting Lisbon
Chelsea
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
BATE Borisov
Athletic Bilbao
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Shakhtar Donetsk
FC Porto
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Brighton & Hove Albion
Cardiff City
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Derby County
AFC Bournemouth
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Middlesbrough
Blackpool
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Millwall
Birmingham City
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Norwich City
Charlton Athletic
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Rotherham United
Blackburn Rovers
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Sheffield Wednesday
Ipswich Town
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Watford
Brentford
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Wigan Athletic
Nottingham Forest
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Crewe Alexandra
Notts County
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
AFC Telford United
Chester City
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Alfreton Town
Halifax
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Altrincham
Macclesfield Town
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Braintree Town
Barnet
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Dover
Aldershot Town
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Eastleigh
Bristol Rovers
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Forest Green Rovers
Torquay United
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Grimsby Town
Southport
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Lincoln City
Gateshead
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Welling
Dartford
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Woking
Nuneaton Town
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Wrexham
Kidderminster Harriers
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Aberdeen
St Mirren
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
León
Monterrey
1:06 AM GMT
Game Details
Atlas
Queretaro
1:30 AM GMT
Game Details
U.A.N.L
Santos
2:00 AM GMT
Game Details
São Paulo
Huachipato
11:30 PM GMT
Leg 1
Game Details
Icasa
Luverdense
10:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Sampaio Correa-MA
Portuguesa de Desportos
10:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Vila Nova-GO
Ceará
10:30 PM GMT
Game Details
AA Ponte Preta
Paraná Clube
11:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Al-Ain
Al Hilal
2
1
FT
Leg 2Aggregate: 2 - 4
Game Details
Herediano
Universidad De Costa Rica
Postp
Postponed - now being played Wed, Oct 1
Game Details
Next

Rzouki: Juve need mature effort

Juventus 11 minutes ago
Read
Sep 25, 2010

Revolt in the air as reality hurts Liverpool

There is nothing novel about the protests, but the banners are getting more imaginative. The Kop unfurled its latest message towards Liverpool's American owners on a flag reading: "Plague, famine, war and death, four liars of the apocalypse. Get out of our club." It displayed pictures of Tom Hicks, George Gillett, Christian Purslow and Martin Broughton with question marks above the faces of the managing director and chairman.

• Premier League gallery
• Premier League review

The four liars of the apocalypse may sound like something from Monty Python. "Built by Shanks, broke by Yanks" was a more direct message but, while the Spirit of Shankly group demonstrate their ongoing opposition to the Liverpool board, they have only had an indirect influence in this week's mishaps.

Doomsday scenarios and apocalyptic predictions have become commonplace on Merseyside. An otherwise profitable club, as Purslow has admitted, can barely cover its considerable loans. In happier times, though, they specialised in simpler phrasing. "This is Anfield," once a warning, now seems an invitation to visitors. For all its historic resonance, its powers to intimidate are decreasing as the club declines. Whatever the veracity of the comments from the boardroom, the truth is they are troubled on the pitch.

As Sunderland emulated Northampton in drawing 2-2 on Liverpool's hallowed turf, it was apparent the fear factor was gone. Steve Bruce's side conceded a bizarre goal, weathered an awkward start and nevertheless emerged to play with great assurance. "The pleasing thing was the way we dominated possession," he said. "I've been in sides that have done it [here], but never managed one before." Darren Bent's goals and Titus Bramble's defiance in defence were the dominant themes of the display, but this was a tactical triumph for Bruce in his duel with Roy Hodgson.

Sunderland outnumbered Liverpool in the centre of midfield, where Lee Cattermole, Jordan Henderson and Steed Malbranque formed a fine trio. But, with Raul Meireles and Joe Cole wandering infield from the flanks into no-man's land, the Black Cats were also able to overlap with impunity, the impressive Ahmed Elmohamady and Danny Welbeck allowed to run unchecked at the full-backs.

It helped account for both of Sunderland's goals. For the opener, Almohamady, the Egyptian Bruce has borrowed, crossed and Christian Poulsen met it with a needlessly raised hand. "I don't subscribe to accidental handball, handball should be intentional and there is no way anyone is going to persuade me that was intentional," said an aggrieved Hodgson. Bent converted the resulting penalty.

A Bent double was completed from a second right-wing cross from Onuoha, the Sunderland striker heading past Jose Reina in an instant to highlight his greater anticipation than that of his marker, a lacklustre Glen Johnson.

Liverpool's goals were a combination of the unusual and the normal. The opener was a bone of contention, Fernando Torres capitalising on what was either an under-hit back-pass by Michael Turner or a casual touch towards goalkeeper Simon Mignolet, whom he was expecting to take Sunderland's free kick. Torres advanced and, when confronted with the appealing keeper, passed for Dirk Kuyt to score simply. "A piece of quick thinking by Torres and Kuyt," added Hodgson.

Sunderland, infuriated by referee Stuart Attwell's decision to allow the goal, disagreed. "He's got it wrong," Bruce added. "It was 25 yards from the incident where the free kick should have been taken. I don't think the referee has seen it."

A goal ahead then, Liverpool trailed 2-1 before Torres turned creator a second time, delivering the cross that Gerrard headed in with emphatic brilliance. Just as he did six days before at Old Trafford, the captain squared a match at 2-2 and celebrated jubilantly. This time there was no cruel finale, but, despite Hodgson's strangely positive interpretation, nor was there much to savour. Individual inspiration, rather than collective quality, spared them. The body language of the two talismen can be scrutinised. Each was booked, Torres for a late challenge on Onuoha and Gerrard for an elbow on Danny Welbeck. "It's a strange one," added Bruce. "If it had been Lee Cattermole, he would have been sent off."

As it is, Liverpool's problems are sufficient without Gerrard serving a suspension. "I don't think we are playing like a team in fourth or fifth," Hodgson said. "One of the things we are lacking is that we have to play much more together. There are a lot of new players coming together in the team and we have not had much time."

As he said: "Rome wasn't built in a day." To borrow from another ancient city, Troy was destroyed in 24 hours either. But this is a week when Liverpool, the equivalent of a classical civilisation in English football, look further imperilled.

MAN OF THE MATCH: Titus Bramble - Among Bruce's achievements is getting the best from the talented, but rather error-prone defender. He hardly put a foot wrong today, in a reminder of some outstanding displays for Bruce at Wigan,

LIVERPOOL VERDICT: David Ngog and Daniel Agger had late chances in a forceful ending and Torres may have been unfortunate to see a second-minute goal disallowed, but much of went in between was dreadful. While putting Gerrard in the centre of midfield has had its merits, the search for a winning shape goes on. Meireles, used on the right, has played in three positions in as many league games while Poulsen, another newcomer, is yet to impress.

SUNDERLAND VERDICT: Another terrific performance to follow last week's display against Arsenal. Bruce has a problem when Asamoah Gyan is fully fit, because his five-man midfield is functioning so well at the moment.

Comments

Use a Facebook account to add a comment, subject to Facebook's Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. Your Facebook name, photo & other personal information you make public on Facebook will appear with your comment, and may be used on ESPN's media platforms. Learn more.