Middlesbrough 2-0 Liverpool [FT]
16:59 Right, elsewhere Arsenal 0-0 Fulham, Chelsea 2-1 Wigan. Earlier Everton beat West Brom 2-0 in the lunchtime kick-off. Don’t bother watching Match of the Day tonight.
16:58 ubermick in the forums:
I shudder to think what’s going to happen if we show up at Old Trafford like this…
16:55 Full-time. Shocking performance. Reds down to third.
90mins +4 Rafa looks disgusted with what he’s been watching. So am I.
90mins +3 Shocking header from Ngog from the corner. Loads of space, loads of time, loads of height, plants it high over Jones’ bar.
90mins +2 Boro get the ball in the net again but it’s ruled out for offside.
90mins +2 Reds look amateur and so so poor. Knocking the ball around just waiting for the referee to put us out of our misery. Dismal and depressing day.
90mins +1 Chelsea have taken the lead at Stamford Bridge again. Fat Lampard. Fuck this.
90mins 4mins of added time to be played.
89mins Wigan have equalised at Chelsea. Olivier Kapo getting the goal that might keep the Reds in second place tonight.
88mins SUBSTITUTION Walker on for Arca. Who cares.
88mins The clock’s just running down now and there doesn’t seem to be a way in for the Reds. Let me just remind you that this is a Boro side who haven’t won in the league for four months.
86mins Many Liverpool fans have left early, lots of empty seats. The remaining faces are pretty solemn.
84mins With no breaking of the Boro defence, Aurelio is the latest to have a dissapointing long range effort.
83mins tettehsrafalution in the forums:
To be honest, we haven’t been this bad since Souness.
Mesmerizingly terrible performance.
82mins Just before that last Middlesbrough substitution, they could have had a third again. Gary O’Neil volleyed from close range and it only just crept past Reina’s left hand post. This has been a truly awful performance.
80mins Looks as though Skrtel’s given up his responsibilities at right-back and moved inside to cover the departed Carragher. Is that Mascherano at right back now??!
78mins SUBSTITUTION Johnson on for Tuncay. Boro think they’ve got this wrapped up now.
77mins Aurelio’s corner is eventually met by a rash effort from Martin Skrtel on the edge of the area. It’s not the first time he’s had a go today and not the first time he’s blasted way over.
76mins Gerrard’s lasted 75mins and is replaced by Lucas.
75mins 3 goals in 15 mins anyone? No, thought not.
73mins David Ngog doing nothing up front as usual…
72mins Liverpool are caught short at the back with no Carragher and could quite easily have conceded a third. Boro broke again and found lots of space in the Reds penalty area but Reina pulls out a brilliant save to deny this being a complete rout by the hosts.
70mins SUBSTITUTION Interesting substitution Rafa, attacking minded. Jamie Carragher comes off for hero of Madrid Yossi Benayoun.
70mins junkster in the forums:
How about this as the answer…..Two managers…..Rafa for Europe and Jose for the League.
68mins SUBSTITUTIONS King for AliadiÃ¨re and for us, Ngog for El Zahr. Oh great David Ngog, now we’re not exactly sending out shockwaves to the rest of the Premier League are we?
67mins Gerrard makes space on the right of the area and sends in a great low cross that whisks accross goal and past the outstreched leg of Dirk Kuyt. Another chance goes begging for Liverpool.
66mins Middlesbrough fans: “Yer gonna win fuck all”. Probably not wrong. This is an awful performance today Redmen.
64mins Gerrard makes a strong run down the right and into the Boro penalty area to see his shot saved by Jones. Alonso’s follow up blast is deflected out for a penalty by Xabi and Dirk are adament it came off a hand. That second goal has fully silenced the Kopites.
62mins GOAL Shocking defending. Boro hit Liverpool on the counter attack down the right wing. Simple passing and good communication fools a backpeddling Reds defence and Tuncay is found unmarked in the box and he duly slots home. That’s surely game over the way Liverpool are playing.
60mins Kuyt sticks out an arm to block Jones’ kick out, and the ball rebounds off for a goal kick. Sill Dirk, some referees would have booked him there.
59mins El Zahr looks very naiive and inexperienced out there. Surely switching Babel to the right and bringing Benayoun on would make sense.
58mins Ryan Babel with another exciting run down the left but his cross with the outside of his boot meets no-one in a grey shirt.
57mins Gerrard has been dissapointing today, getting very frustrated and not creating much at all. Maybe he’s struggling with fitness from his recent injury.
56mins Schoolboy errors. Gerrard plays a short corner one-two and is immediately flagged for offside. Awful.
55mins paulismeroar1234 in the forums:
Benayoun for Babel please.
53mins Sami’s back on after reciving treatment for his head injury.
51mins Boro still knocking and AliadiÃ¨re finds himself with space inside the area but his shot doesn’t trouble Reina.
50mins Ouch. Sami Hyypia clashes heads with Huth as they jump to meet a Boro cross on the edge of the area. Sami’s down the tunnel for stitches.
48mins Cracking run by Babel on the left finds Gerrard in the area who pulls back a great ball for El Zahr who finds himself in loads of space just 8 yards from goal, dead centre but the Moroccan fires over when it looked easier to score. BIG CHANCE MISSED.
47mins Right-back Skrtel gets forward again and unleashes a powerful long range shot that goes miles high and wide. Good to see him involved up there, but he does look out of place.
46mins The crowd has been pretty quiet all around the ground today. Reds fans were in shock when Downing’s corner went in off the foot of Xabi Alonso, under pressure from Wheater.
16.05 Boro get the second half underway.
16.04 Teams are back out for the second half – Middlesbrough a few minutes later than the Reds. No changes at half-time.
16.02 One thing I haven’t mentioned in the first half commentary is that Martin Skrtel has been playing at right back insted of Jamie Carragher. He’s been getting quite far forward at times on the right side, but has no crossing ability. Switch it back, I’d say Rafa.
16.00 Other half-time scores: Chelsea 1-0 Wigan, Arsenal 0-0 Fulham. It sounds like both Arsenal and Liverpool are lacking convinction today. Or should that be this season?
15:58 Shanklys Best in the forums:
Weve fell apart…
This is a disgrace from a Liverpool team, supposedly the best since Rafa has been our manager..
Wheres the passion.?
Wheres the ideas.?
Why cant our players pass.?
Why cant our players control the ball.???
Feel sick… hope the 2nd half is better.. it cant be any worse…!!
15:55 Really gutting to be down in such a way as an own goal. But in all honest, although Boro probably don’t deserve to be one up, Liverpool don’t deserve to be level at the break. Rafa’s got some serious talking to do in this half-time break.
45mins +2 Rob Styles blows the whistle for half time and we’re losing to a team that hasn’t won in the league for four months. Some good passing at times and El Zahr, Babel and Kuyt have all tested Jones in the Boro goal, but nothing really too troubling. Half-time and it’s 1-0 to Boro.
45mins +1 Good passing and movement by the Reds edging forward, but Wheater intercepts a ball to Gerrard on the egde of the area.
45mins 2 minutes to be added on at the end of this first half.
44mins Babel slips on the edge of the area and Boro break again. Really no sense of urgency or much threat from the Reds.
43mins If the scores stay like this, we’d slip down to third, behind Chelsea.
41mins londonred in the forums:
Gerrard is doing my head in he keep sulking even though its him making the mistakes.
39mins Hyypia with a fantastic takle on AliadiÃ¨re by the corner flag. But it’s Boro attacking and keeping posession. Reds not playing like they’re behind.
37mins Benitez is furious, marching up and down the dug out shouting instructions.
36mins Better attacking from Liverpool now, looking for the equaliser before half-time. But Boro are defending well and not letting a way in.
34mins GaryStew1980 in the forums:
It was unlucky for Alonso but is it just me or is anyone else seeing the pattern that teams are putting their best headers of the ball on Alonso every game now. It is so obvious that you would think maybe Rafa might see it too.
33mins Alonso looks gutted.
32mins GOAL Boro corner was whipped in well and the ball goes in off Xabi Alonso. The Spaniard didn’t really know what was happening and it just bounced in past Reina off his stationary legs. Disaster for Liverpool.
31mins Tuncay bundles his way through several Reds defenders and wins a corner for Boro.
30mins Other latest scores: Arsenal 0-0 Fulham; Chelsea 1-0 Wigan (Terry). Earlier, Everton beat West Brom 2-0.
28mins Gerrard takes initiative and hits a quick low shot but it’s safely wide past Jones’ left hand post.
27mins Schoolboy. Kuyt gets in the way of an El Zahr cross and the attack breaks momentum.
25mins Stuart Downing’s cross could have caused problems there for Liverpool as Boro hit them on the counter-attack, but the cross was slightly over everyone – including the backpeddling Reds defence.
23mins Middlesbrough with a spell of pressure of their own, but again nothing dangerous. This game really needs to come to life soon.
21mins Still not much action as Liverpool pass the ball around nicely, but not seeming to actually get anywhere.
16mins Babel forces Jones into another save, firing low from an acute angle. Middlesbrough just starting to look shaky at the back and Liverpool pressuring well.
15mins Fantastic cross from Aurelio finds Kuyt who’s gets behind the ball well but his volley is well saved. Corner to Reds.
13mins A very slow opening at the Riverside, but Liverpool just starting to control the game a bit better. Passing it around nicely. Middlesbrough defending strong though, not letting the Reds through.
12mins Boro go close, forcing a save out of Reina. Could cause problems on the counter today.
4mins Not the greatest of openings. Nothing much happening out there. Rob Styles referees today by the way.
15:01 The games gets underway. Come on Redmen!
14:58 The two teams come out to a cold Riverside Stadium. As ever, there’s a good number who have made the journey north to cheer on the Reds. Stay tuned to this page for text commentary, join other fans in a live chat in the chat room, or discuss the afternoon’s proceedings in the forums.
14:50 Everton have beaten West Brom 2-0 back on Merseyside. The other Premier League games this afternoon are Arsenal vs Fulham and Chelsea vs Wigan. I’ll let you know if there’s any goals there.
14:44 It’s cloudy in Middlesbrough today and around 10Â°C.
14:35 Okay so here we go! After the triumph in Madrid it’s up to the cold air of Middlesbrough for another crucial Premier League clash. The Reds must win this afternoon to maintain any hopes they have of catching league leaders Manchester United. We haven’t won at the Riverside since 2002 though, but victory today would take us four points behind Alex Ferguson’s men. Here’s the Reds line-up:
Carragher Skrtel Hyypia Aurelio
El Zhar Mascherano Alonso Babel