Monday, August 30, 2010

Torres Goal Sinks Baggies

Liverpool 1 - 0 West Brom

Liverpool, under the new regime of Roy Hodgson, finally bag all 3 points after an uncomfortable 1-0 win over West Bromwich Albion. They were uninspiring for majority of the game until Fernando Torres came up with a magical strike.

The Spanish forward has been utterly out of form and woefully underwhelming ever since the start of the World Cup and after 3 games into the new season, things doesn't seemed to have change.

Presented with an early opportunity, he cooked his touch a wee bit too much and could only manage a tame shot on goal. That was Scott Carson's only save for 65 minutes of the game until the former Liverpool goalkeeper was beaten by a moment of magic.

Liverpool had little imagination and lacks penetration throughout the game. There was a distinct lack of match sharpness and could not string a few passes together to actually organise an attack on West Brom.

Passing in the final third were poor while West Brom learned their lesson after the 6-0 thrashing by Chelsea in their opening game by compacting their play and frustrating Liverpool with the 5 man midfield with Peter Odemwingie proving a constant threat down the flanks.

The best chance of the game actually fell to West Brom, who failed to convert. Immediately, Pepe Reina launches an ambitious throw to Dirk Kuyt, who combined nicely with Torres and it was the Spanish hotshot who was at the end of the move by volleying home.

Scott Carson had no chance.

Liverpool should have had a penalty later in the game when Torres' goal bound effort was blocked by Gonzalo Jara's arm. On normal circumstance, it would've been penalised but Lee Probert, who has had an underwhelming game, waved away the appeal.

But he showed no hesitation in showing James Morrison a straight red after a dangerous lunge into Torres late in the game.

Conclusively, Liverpool still looked like a team in transition and much has to be done if they were to challenge Man City or Spurs for the Champions League spot. In terms of offence, Liverpool still needs gelling upfront, while the overall fluency of the team needs some working.

It was a game that Liverpool were banked on to win and they did, albeit unconvincingly. Much work has to be done or the game against Man Utd in a few weeks time could prove to be much more than a daunting task.

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