Saturday, 7 February 2015

Reds Late Show Seals Palace Trip

Ahead of the Merseyside Derby at the weekend, Liverpool travelled to face Bolton in the FA Cup fourth round replay on Wednesday night looking to continue their good form in 2015.

Steven Gerrard returned to make his historic 700th appearance with Joe Allen also included in the starting 11 while Jordan Henderson dropped the bench which included Daniel Sturridge who hoped to continue his comeback from injury.

Liverpool started the better of the two sides with Adam Lallana picking out Steven Gerrard in space in the seventh minute who forced a save from Andy Lonergan before the Bolton stopper saw a stray shot from Philippe Coutinho sail wide of his goal.

Bolton responded with a high shot from Eidur Gudjohnsen in the 16th minute before David Wheater connected with a header from a free-kick which Simon Mignolet saved comfortably. The best chance of the game came from Raheem Sterling who after being supplied by a Moreno-Lallana combination, clipped a shot at goal only to see it cannon off the post.

Sterling looked to turn creator just before the interval as he combined with Gerrard to find Coutinho whose shot narrowly missed the outside of the post. Bolton seemed to be buoyed by still being in the game at half time and their position improved just before the hour mark as a run into the box from Zack Clough saw him tripped by Martin Skrtel resulting in a penalty. Eidur Gudjohnsen slotted past Mignolet to give the hosts the lead but their joy was soon soured with the dismissal of Neil Danns for a second booking in the 66th minute.

Despite their numerical disadvantage, Bolton continued to threaten with Clough shooting pastthe post after a clever run before Feeney swept in a dangerous cross which saw Mignolet save crucially with Gudjohnsen just inches away from connecting.

Liverpool came achingly close to drawing level when Jordan Henderson's shot deflected off David Wheater before grazing the post before a pacy run from Daniel Sturridge resulted in a blocked shot which saw Sterling try his luck only to be denied in a similar fashion.

Emre Can fired a powerful shot at goal in the 83rd minute which saw Andy Lonergan tip the ball onto the crossbar but the Bolton stopper was soon beaten as Can clipped a pass forward into the path of Raheem Sterling who volleyed through the legs of Lonergan to level the tie at 1-1.

Extra time looked to be on the cards as the game ticked on into added time but when Jordan Henderson found Philippe Coutinho in space, the visiting fans began to believe and their faith was rewarded when the Brazilian swept in a superb shot which cannoned off the bar and over the line.

Bolton came just five minutes from a dream tie in the fifth round away to Crystal Palace but the Eagles will welcome Liverpool hoping to repeat their stunning 3-1 win from earlier in the season.