Reds in reserve - Wigan 0 Liverpool 3

Posted by liverweb on September 20, 2007, 09:55:44 AM

Wigan Athletic 0 Liverpool 3

The Reds reserves ran out comfortable 3-0 winners at the JJB stadium last night against Wigan. The game was switched in the last week to the main stadium for Wigan rather than the smaller Robin Park next door. It paid off for Wigan as well in terms of the gate as over 1200 turned up including a singing brigade that ended up sat right near me.

Liverpool got the game underway and straight away you could see a difference in quality between the two sides.

After just two minutes Sebastian Leto raced at the Wigan back line, beat his man and shot across Pollitt in the Wigan goal but it sailed past the post as well.

The Reds took a very early lead. Just four and half minutes were on the clock when El Zhar went down the right before feeding Darby. His cross to the back post beat the keeper and Lindfield headed goalwards where Brouwer headed home from half a yard.

Wigan had an early chance to get back in to it just afterwards but McCaugthrie shot wide after a slip by San Jose.

On ten minutes El Zhar was caught offside but still carried on and hit the cross bar with his shot anyway. He often seemed to tread a very fine line between getting booked in the game. At the next level which I'm not convinced he's ready for he would have picked up a card for that alone. In the reserves it's not like you can't hear everything that is going on.

Leto raced at the Wigan back line a minute later and played a ball through to Lindfield but he could only just get a toe to it as Pollitt raced out and smothered the ball.

El Zhar was given a warning on nineteen minutes after a second poor foul from behind. A minute later and Jay Spearing nearly scored a bizarre own goal. Thirty five yards out he sent a looping ball back to David Martin which nearly bounced over him. Only a dramatic lunge with his head from the Reds keeper saved the ball looping over him.

Leto seemed to have his man in his pocket on the left hand side. Time and again when he was given the ball he had the skills to beat him.

Lindfield was caught just offside on thirty three minutes after a ball from El Zhar. Lindfield, like El Zhar carried on but like his team mate he missed as well as his shot sailed over the bar.

Leto forced a save from Pollitt five minutes before half time after he was played through by Lindfield. It really was a case of the Reds looking to score as many as possible.

Just on the stroke of half time came one of the bizarre injuries in the game as Brouwer tangled with the referee. Brouwer went down in a heap and needed treatment. Then the Wigan physio came racing on which made you think it was something bad only for their physio to treat the ref. Now Brouwer had to wait on the sidelines to come back on after the injury but the referee decided he could ignore the rule and invited himself back on anyway. Is there a rule for refs?

The half time interval saw quite a downpour at the JJB. The Reds subs did a bit of warming up with keeper Peter Gulacsi being put through his paces down at the goal area by academy keeper coach Billy Stewart. It was the kind of workout that I thought was going to see him being introduced. As it turns out it was obviously just some extra practice for him.

The second half got underway with Wigan bringing on two subs. McArdle and Hampson replaced Bouaouzan and McCaughtrie respectively.

The second half turned out just like the first half really except the Reds had two goals to count in this half.

Just seven minutes in to the half and El Zhar nearly scored when his shot squirmed through the hands of Pollitt. The red faced keeper though was grateful for it to sail wide.

Lindfield shot across Pollitt on fifty four after being played in by Darby. An early chip over the keeper was on but Lindfield moved the ball on a touch and his shot went just past the far post.

Wigan had a great chance just minutes later when Leto was dispossessed near his own area. Wigan moved on but despite beating Martin in the Reds goal saw the shot curl just the wrong side of the post for them.

The Reds finally doubled their tally on sixty two minutes when Nabir El Zhar scored. Leto was again instrumental in a Reds move. His cross from the left was deflected to the back post. Spearing headed back towards the penalty spot where El Zhar came in and chested the ball down before smashing it home. This was definitely three points to Liverpool now.

The Reds made a couple of changes shortly after. Ryan Flynn replaced Brouwer on sixty six minutes. Six minutes later Ray Putterill replaced Plessis. The young Frenchman has only just arrived and is obviously learning his trade but there's something there I think that could see him develop really well.

On seventy four minutes El Zhar had another chance to score but blasted wide. It proved to be his last action as Ryan Crowther came straight on to replace him. This lad didn't have long but he's sure got some pace about him.

The Reds rounded off the scoring on eighty three minutes when Putterill scored. Leto jinked his way in to the area again and drove across the area. Pollitt half saved it but the ball fell to Razor who slammed the ball in to the net.

The Reds could easily have had more on the night, even at this late stage. Lindfield hit the post after curling a great shot past the keeper. Putterill then forced a save from the keeper in injury time when he raced at the back line. An earlier pass to Lindfield would have been the better option in the build up admittedly but the lad lacks no confidence.

Ultimately no-one had an awful game in this one and the two centre backs looked really good to me, although they were never put under any real pressure. Spearing and Plessis played well through the middle to enhance it whilst El Zhar and Leto interchanged down the flanks.

MotM : Sebastian Leto - had the full back in his pocket and always looked to create openings. As he settles in to the English game he certainly looks to have a good future.


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Liverpool Martin, Darby, Insua, San Jose, Hobbs ©, Spearing, El Zhar (Crowther 74), Plessis (Putterill 72), Lindfield, Brouwer (Flynn 66), Leto
Unused Subs Gulacsi, Huth
Goal Brouwer (5), El Zhar (62), Putterill (83)

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Wigan Athletic Pollitt, Moore, Ashworth, Pearson, Olembe, Bouaouzan (McArdle 45), Taylor (Holt 86), Montrose, Mahon, McCaughtrie (Hampson 45), Cywka
Unused Subs Saunders, King
Goal 

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Referee C Sarginson
Att 1207
Venue JJB Stadium

copyright : Liverweb 2007

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