Monday, September 28, 2009

Liverpool 6 - 1 Hull

Fernando Torres struck a brilliant hat-trick as Liverpool demolished Hull.
The Spanish striker showed stunning footwork to slot in a first, before Geovanni's volley levelled matters.
Torres dribbled around Boaz Myhill to restore the Reds' lead and rolled in to complete his treble after latching on to a clever Yossi Benayoun pass.
Steven Gerrard's cross flew it to make it 4-1 before Ryan Babel tapped in Dirk Kuyt's cross and then unknowingly deflected in Albert Riera's late shot.
Benitez happy with six against Hull
The final score was harsh on Hull, but their commitment and endeavour could not make up for a glaring lack of quality throughout the side.
After a shaky start to the season, Rafael Benitez has now seen his Liverpool side win their last six matches, scoring 18 goals in the process.
The Spaniard even had the luxury of resting midfielder Javier Mascherano ahead of a testing week which includes a Champions League trip to Fiorentina on Tuesday and a league meeting with Chelsea next Sunday.
Riera came in for the Argentine and the winger had an immediate impact as his low ball in from the left was shifted out of his feet by the quick-thinking Torres before he rolled into the far corner.
It was far from an ideal start for Hull, who had lost their previous three matches, but if the majority of the Anfield crowd were expecting the floodgates to open they were soon to be disappointed as the Tigers gave their travelling fans something to celebrate.
Paul McShane's cross from the right was headed back across goal by Jan Venegoor of Hesselink and, after Martin Skrtel could only flick the ball up in the air, Geovanni waited for it to drop on to his left foot and directed it into the corner from 10 yards.
The goal gave Hull renewed belief and every time they pumped a ball into the Liverpool area the hosts' fragile defence gave them cause for optimism, clearly not heeding boss Benitez's midweek plea for them to tighten up at the back.
Fortunately for them Hull were even shakier and before the half-hour mark Torres doubled the lead, slipping on to a Benayoun slide-rule pass, nonchalantly rounding Ibrahima Sonko and Myhill before clipping into the net.
Hull simply could not live with the blond marksman and he sealed his fourth Liverpool hat-trick two minutes after the break, again found by Benayoun and again coming inside Sonko before firing home.
At that stage the score was harsh on Hull, who saw a Sonko header deflected wide and a Geovanni shot fly off target, but from then on it was nothing more than an exercise in damage limitation.
And as the Hull defence - including 18-year-old Liam Cooper, making his Premier League debut - proceeded to fall apart, Liverpool began to run riot.
Torres delighted with a wonderful game
Gerrard's goal had more than a touch of fortune about it as he swung over a cross from the left that swirled over Myhill's head and flew in-off the crossbar, but as the game wore on Hull simply could not get the ball off their opponents.
Torres and Gerrard were given deserved rests but the torment did not end there as Kuyt ploughed down the right and crossed for Babel to convert at the near post.
It got even worse in injury time as Riera's shot struck Babel and looped over Myhill to make it six.

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