Thursday, 4 December 2014

Three Lions Down Foxes

After securing a late win at home to Stoke at the weekend, Liverpool travelled to Leicester on Tuesday night looking for back-to-back wins.

Steven Gerrard returned to the starting 11 alongside Javier Manquillo with Glen Johnson switching to the left in place of the rested Jose Enrique but one thing that hadn't changed from recent outings was the better start of the opposition with Wes Morgan's tame header finding Mignolet in the fifth minute.

Liverpool had a good chance of their own in the seventh minute when Steven Gerrard swept in a free kick which drifted wide after connecting with Martin Skrtel, Jeff Schlupp had a good chance for the home side in the 18th minute which was deflected wide off Lucas.

Simon Mignolet has come in for a huge amount of criticism recently and did his cause no good when a stray pass found Esteban Cambiasso just on the edge of the box with the Leicester defender blowing an open goal by drifting the ball past the post.

Liverpool were caught out again just two minutes later when Leicester countered well from a Reds attack with Leonardo Ulloa powering an effort at goal from close range only to be denied by a goal-line clearance from Martin Skrtel. However, the ball remained in play and Leonardo Ulloa collected before hitting at goal and seeing his shot cannon off the post and in off the back of Simon Mignolet who was given the own goal.

Glen Johnson looked to draw Liverpool level but could only blaze over the bar from long range but just four minutes after going behind, the visitors were level after Lucas' cross into the box was met by a tame header by Wes Morgan with the ball drifting into the path of Adam Lallana who fired past Kasper Schmeichel to make it 1-1.

Martin Skrtel had a header blocked by Richie De Laet in the 33rd minute as the sides went into the interval on level terms but the equality lasted only nine minutes of the second half as a superb cross from Raheem Sterling was tamely cleared by Wes Morgan and straight to Steven Gerrard who rifled the ball past Kasper Schmeichel for 2-1.

After scoring an own goal at the weekend against QPR and in a way providing two assists for Liverpool on the night, Wes Morgan's evening got even worse in the 63rd minute when a chase for the ball with Rickie Lambert saw him pull back the striker in a perfect goal scoring position meaning he was given a straight red card.

Esteban Cambiasso had a good chance to level in the 74th minute before Steven Gerrard broke clear at the other end only to miss the chance to shoot when he collided with Kasper Schmeichel in the area but the referee deemed it as a 50-50 challenge and no foul was given.

However the Liverpool captain was influential in the next strong move as he swept in a clever cross to Raheem Sterling with an effort blocked by Kasper Schmeichel before the young winger squared the ball to Jordan Henderson who fired home for a 3-1 lead to surely wrap up the three points.

Leonardo Ulloa had a chance in injury time to try and reduce the arrears but saw his effort saved by Simon Mignolet ensuring Liverpool moved into eighth and just a few points outside the top four.