Liverpool’s four game unbeaten run came to an ignominious end at the Britannia Stadium as they meekly surrendered to Stoke. A 56th minute goal from Ricardo Fuller opened the scoring, giving the Potters a deserved lead for their hard running and direct, abrasive approach play which Liverpool struggled to deal with all evening. A last minute Kenwyne Jones finish put the game beyond Liverpool. However, such was Liverpool’s inability to construct a clear cut opportunity, the finish to put Liverpool out of their misery was merciful. Rarely throughout the game did Liverpool look likely to add to their unbeaten run.
Hodgson responds to Dalglish chants.
As the game slipped desperately away from Liverpool with moments to spare at the Britannia, the travelling support – up until that point so patient with their team and manager – began once again to chant the name of Kenny Dalglish. Latent tensions with current manager Roy Hodgson still simmer as Liverpool fans continue to be frustrated with his conservatism away from home.
Hodgson, however, was not interested in what the fans had to sing. “That seems to be part of Liverpool life at the moment,”he admitted in The Guardian. “I don’t know if that kind of singing and chanting helps anybody but I didn’t hear it and I’m sure there are lots of fans who sympathise (with me).”
Reds mentally strong.
Speaking to skysports.com, Roy Hodgson refused to blame his team’s defeat to Stoke on mental fragility. In spite of conceding directly from a Rory Delap long-throw – the first Premier League team in 22 games to do so – and having Lucas Leiva sent off for two rash bookable offences, Hodgson claimed that Liverpool stood up well to the test at the Britannia Stadium.
“I thought today we stood up as well as we could be expected to considering the pressure we were under,”he said in defence of his defeated team. “I don’t think the players threw the towel in and never looked like throwing the towel in.”