Villa 0-1 Reds: What the Papers Say

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It’s a good morning for Liverpool fans at long last, we had plenty of days waking up feeling like this during the first half of the year but not so much of late, but that feeling is back courtesy of the boy Fernando and his record breaking 50th goal in 72 appearances. “Everyone knows that when Fernando is on form he is the best in the world” said our captain last night and boy is he right.

Here’s how the media are reporting our last gasp wint at Villa Park…

Oliver Kay in The Times describes Torres as “showing the cold-eyed instincts of a world-class goalscorer” and in doing so “reminded Aston Villa and indeed Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City that his team still have designs on a top-four finish.”

While Torres of course has grabbed the headlines, it was a solid defensive performance – albeit not when defending corners – that set up the win, as Kay notes:

Not only was this a second consecutive Barclays Premier League victory but it was a second consecutive clean sheet, one that owed much to the performances of Jamie Carragher and Daniel Agger, who were impeccable for the most part, and Pepe Reina, who made an excellent save from Stewart Downing in the first half.

Kay also notes the failure to award a penalty in the first half when Dunne clattered into Dirk Kuyt.

Over at The Telegraph, Henry Winter writes “Small mercies count double during troubled times like these.” True. Again Winter reserves praise for our Spanish stopper, and also our “important worker-bee in midfield” Lucas.

Contrasting views on new boy Alberto Aquilani, who obviously isn’t used to playing twice in 6 months let alone twice in 3 days, but Winter sticks the knife in, “he offered little”. Kay offers a little praise in describing the Italian as “quietly making his presence felt”.

The best of the blogs comes from Gareth Roberts at Well Red points out “the last-gasp win at Villa gave Liverpool their first back-to-back wins since September”.

There’s still room for improvement of course and that’s to be expected. The players have admitted confidence has been shot to bits by results this season. Add in players still looking for form and fitness and the bedding in of Alberto Aquilani, and it’s clear to see that the team hitting top gear is more likely to be a gradual process rather than a sudden one.

While Neil Moxley at the Daily Mail puts it well, “As it always seemed likely that one goal would win it, the importance of that cannot be over-estimated”. The last word should be on El Nino and Moxley writes:

You don’t beat the Roger Hunts, Ian Rushes, Robbie Fowlers and Michael Owens of this world to the title of being the fastest scorer of 50 league goals for a club like Liverpool unless you have got that eye and killer instinct.

To mark the end of the 30-year wait for a league title, the ‘Liverpool Mishmash’ poster is available to order exclusively on This Is Anfield — the history of the Reds in one image!

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