Monday, March 13, 2006

Henry double sinks Pool.

Early this morning, Liverpool missed the chance to close the gap on 2nd place Man U as Theirry Henry scored two goals in the last ever match between Arsenal and Liverpool at highbury.

The Reds came to Highbury today looking to rid themselves of the gloom of getting knocked out of the Champions League and increase the likelihood of a top four finish. But they will have known to expect a tough task at a venue where they haven't won since a Titi Camara goal gave them a 1-0 win in 2000.

For all height of Crouch, the sheer pace of Cisse, the instinct of Fowler and the experience of Morientes, the Rafa assembled attack have scored only 5 goals this year.
Correction, only Crouch has scored this year, with the rest coming from midfielders or defenders.

In a bid to arrest this problem, Benitez used Garcia and Gerrard behind Crouch to provide the ammunition, with the Gerrard and Crouch partnership working well on certain occasions.

But despite the attacking talents of Liverpool, it was Arsenal which started the game better with just 8 minutes when gone Adebayor wasted an excellent chance created for him by Henry.

While Liverpool had Gerrard and Crouch as their main attacking duo, Arsenal's was Fabregas and Henry.
High hopes have been placed on young Fabregas' shoulders and in the 21st minute, he showed why.
The spanish prodigy showed his class by threading an inch perfect pass between 2 reds to his skipper the Frenchman scored a goal of the highest quality which now seem to be the norm rather than exception.

Despite the hammer blow, the Reds pressed on and Crouch missed a gilt edged chance as he headed wide after being picked out by Finnan's cross as Pool showed that creating chances was not the problem but converting them is.

Arsenal could have killed of the gaem early in the 2nd half but were unable to finish as Pool were so disoriented that Garcia and Gerrard even tackled each other.
But in the 75th minute, Gerrard took a hard swerving shot travelling at great pace which Lehman could only parry into the path of the onrushing Luis Garcia who gleefully headed it forward and made the net bulge as he sent the visitors into a frenzy.

But any hopes of a Liverpool victory were quashed as Alonso was controversially sent off.
Xabi seemed to slip and collided with Flamini, with referee Bennet choosing to show him a 2nd yellow card and sending him off.
The highbury pitch was extremely slippery, causing both sides to have players slipping on the turf.

The dismissal rocked Pool as Gerrard, usually the one creating chances, made a huge blunder of a backpass.
He underhit a backpass and seemed to play a through ball to Henry who gleefully tucked it away.
As soon as Gerrard made that pass, he knew the degree of his mistake as he immedietely placed his hands on his head.

With only six minutes remaining, Liverpool were unable to fashion an equalizer with only 10 men as Liverpool striker's scoring drought continued.

Well, at least Liverpool won't lose at Highbury again.
Afterall, this is the last year that Arsenal are playing at Highbury......


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