Archive for the ‘TOULOUSE 0 – 1 LIVERPOOL’ Category

Match Report :TOULOUSE 0 – 1 LIVERPOOL FC

August 15, 2007
TOULOUSE 0 – 1 LIVERPOOL
Wednesday 15 August 2007 15:30 , Champions League Qualifier (1)

VORONIN PUTS REDS IN DRIVING SEAT

Liverpool are 90 minutes away from a place in the group stages of the Champions League after a comfortable 1-0 victory against Toulouse in France.

Andriy Voronin’s stunning first half strike secured a well earned success against the French outfit as Rafael Benitez’s side took a big step towards once again qualifying for European football’s premier competition.

With Chelsea looming on the horizon this weekend it came as no surprise to see six changes from the starting line-up which won so impressively at Aston Villa, with Peter Crouch, Sami Hyypia, Javier Mascherano, Ryan Babel and Yossi Benayoun joining Voronin in making their first appearances of the new campaign.

In the baking mid-afternoon French heat the game was often played at a pedestrian pace, but the Reds remained in control from first minute to last and will now more than fancy their chances of finishing the tie off at Anfield and taking their place in the draw for the next stage of the tournament on August 30.

Despite dominating proceedings, it took until two minutes before half time for the deadlock to be broken ? but it was a goal well worth waiting for.

Steven Gerrard had already gone close with a couple of efforts which flew wide of the target before the Reds grabbed the goal they fully deserved.

Voronin ? who had been one of the stars of the pre-season campaign ? collected the ball on the edge of the area and, having created space for the shot, drilled a blistering drive into the roof of the Toulouse net.

The smile on the Ukrainian’s face told its own story ? he may not be a regular first choice for Rafael Benitez this season but there’s no doubting he has already endeared himself to the Liverpool supporters with his hugely impressive performances for the club so far.

Toulouse rallied after the break but Pepe Reina remained untroubled, while at the other end Gerrard fired another drive over the bar as Liverpool looked for the goal to kill off the French challenge and make the Anfield return little more than a formality.

Reina was forced into his first save after 62 minutes when Toulouse striker Elmander got across Sami Hyypia at the near post, but his first time effort was well stopped by the Spanish stopper.

Liverpool had opportunities to create more danger in the Toulouse half of the field, but were more often content to retain possession and guard against conceding an unnecessary equaliser.

After a second successive satisfactory afternoon’s work this season, Rafa Benitez can now turn his attentions towards the showdown with Chelsea this Sunday safe in the knowledge that, barring any second leg calamity, his side will be competing once more with Europe’s elite later in the season.

Teams

Liverpool: Reina, Arbeloa, Hyypia, Carragher, Finnan, Babel, Gerrard (captain), Mascherano, Benayoun, Crouch, Voronin. Subs – Agger, Riise, Torres, Kuyt, Itandje, Alonso, Sissoko

Toulouse: Douchez, Ebondo, Fofana, Cetto, Mathieu, Dieuze (captain), Sirieix, Emana, Cesar, Elmander, Bergougnoux. Subs – Riou, Jonsson, , Sissoko, Gignac, Mansare, Batlles

Referee: Unknown

Conditions: Hot

Attendance: Unknown

Liverpoolfc.tv Man-of-the-Match: Javier Mascherano

Breakdown

14:30 GMT : Match Starts
1 min : Toulouse get the game under way – the stadium is rocking
2 mins : Babel has started on the right
2 mins : Reds get free kick midway in their half…Gerrard can’t do what he did against Villa
4 mins : It’s boiling here in Toulouse. The stadium announcer advised everyone to drink lots of water. Most of the Reds fans, caged in just to the right of the press box, seem to have opted for lager
8 mins : Hyypia gives the ball away but Mascherano clears the danger
8 mins : Reds dominating possession in the early stages against their 100th European opponent
10 mins : A bit of trickery from Yossi in the box…lays it off to Voronin…he can’t find Gerrard
12 mins : Babel does well to win the ball…surges down the right but the move comes to nothing
13 mins : Toulouse crowding the midfield
14 mins : The home fans unveiled a banner before kick-off reminding everyone they beat Maradona’s Napoli against all the odds in 1986
14 mins : Babel dispossessed by Mascherano again wins back possession
14 mins : I meant ‘but’, not ‘by’ – the Liverpool players have not started tackling each other, don’t worry
16 mins : Hyypia brings the ball forward but it’s all a bit sloppy at this stage
17 mins : Finnan cross…Yossi just can’t get there
18 mins : Rafa is out of his seat
18 mins : Nice through ball from Voronin but Crouch is offside
24 mins : I’ve been sat well away from Steve Hunter…instead I’m next to Gary ‘The Stick’ Gillespe…that’s a good deal
25 mins : Just kidding Steve…
28 mins : Yossi has switched sides with Ryan
28 mins : Nice little run from Ryan from the left…can’t get space for a shot…gives it to the skipper…Gerrard shoots over
29 mins : They’re through…Reina saves but it’s a corner
30 mins : Emana (careful how you say that one) shoots but Yossi blocks
32 mins : Gerard Houllier is among the capacity crowd. He was pitchside before kick off chatting to Stevie, Carra, JAR and Dirk
35 mins : Voronin wins a free kick in a decent position
36 mins : Gerrard lobs it to Crouch who is called up for a foul – what was that for?
37 mins : Yossi goes down in agony – there didn’t seem much in that. The Liverpool players take advantage for a water break
37 mins : He’s back on his feet
38 mins : Brilliant energy from Mascherano…he’s heading into the box…beats a man but the ball runs away from him and out for a goal kick. He’s having a good game, the Argentine
39 mins : Minute by minute writer’s curse…he’s just been dispossesed in their half!
40 mins : Babel tries to make something happened but he can’t beat the second man
40 mins : Good interception from Sami…it needed to be
41 mins : Elmander heading towards goal…Sami ushers away the danger
42 mins : Agger, Momo and Xabi warming up
43 mins : GOAL! Andriy Voronin: Voronin gets the ball with his back to goal before turning and hitting a glorious 25 yard strike into the top corner
15:16 GMT : Half Time Reached
15:32 GMT : Second Half Begins
46 mins : Crouch and Voronin kick off the second half
47 mins : Nice play by Stevie, Crouch and Voronin but the Ukrainian strays offside
51 mins : Hyypia beaten down the left…the cross comes in…Carra clears for a corner
52 mins : In swinger is headed clear but Sami…another corner
53 mins : Geraldine, the lovely Toulouse press officer, has just passed doughnuts around…you don’t get that at Anfield!
54 mins : Yossi down the right…to Voronin…tries a delicate ball to Crouch but it’s intercepted
56 mins : Crouch tries to round the keeper but it’s saved
58 mins : Riise is getting ready to come on
58 mins : Gerrard crosses for Crouch but it’s too high for the big man and his looping header goes over
59 mins : Substitution: John Arne Riise for Yossi Benayoun:
61 mins : First Booking: Johan Elmander: The Swede is booked for a challenge on Mascherano
61 mins : Babel cuts it inside for Gerrard…his left-foot shot is over
63 mins : Elmander gets on the end of a low cross but it’s saved well by Reina
65 mins : Substitution: Momo Sissoko for Steven Gerrard: The skipper is taken off, surely with Chelsea in mind
66 mins : Alvaro concedes a corner
67 mins : Mathieu blasts one from an angle but it’s nowhere near
68 mins : Fantastic tackle from Mascherano in the middle of the park
69 mins : Great cross from Cesar but Elmander heads over
70 mins : Substitution: Andre-Pierre Gignac for Paulo Cesar:
76 mins : Rafa is talking to Torres…
77 mins : Today’s attendance is 30,380…do these people not have jobs?
78 mins : Substitution: Fernando Torres for Andriy Voronin:
80 mins : Both sides look tired
81 mins : Riise threads Torres through…offside
81 mins : Torres down the right…dispossessed
83 mins : Substitution: Moussa Sissoko for Albin Ebondo:
84 mins : We now have two M Sissokos on the pitch
85 mins : Nice strength from Torres…gives it to Peter…the move breaks down
86 mins : Sissoko pushes Sissoko
87 mins : Sissoko fouls Sissoko…I’m not making this up
89 mins : Elmander wants a pen…no chance, son
89 mins : Torres on the edge of the box…should have had a shot but instead lays it to Babel – it’s intercepted, though
90 mins : Toulouse corner…headed clear by Momo

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