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Fulham v Liverpool

Craven Cottage
12 May 2013, KO: 15:00

Minute by minute

Post That's all from us at Craven Cottage. What a goalscorer Daniel Sturridge is turning out to be. Thanks for following and we'll be back for the season finale v QPR next weekend. YNWA.
Post Rodgers on Sturridge: "He's scored goals from the minute he came in. That's 11 goals in 15 games, which is fantastic and the impact we thought he'd make. He can get goals in any game, he's a wonderful talent. He's 23 and I just felt he needed the platform to show what he can do."
Post "We keep progressing. This year was always about building the base for us to move forward, and as we've gone on through the season we've got better and better."
Post Brendan Rodgers: "We took today to experiment in the first half. We played 3-5-2 and at times it worked okay, other times it didn't. That's the learning for us from today but we planned to flip it at half-time into a structure they were comfortable with."
Post @NeilMellor33: "Got to watch the pass tonight from Coutinho for Sturridge's 3rd goal! Defence splitting, vision, class!"
Post Sturridge has now reached 10 goals in the Premier League quicker than any other Liverpool player - he's done it in 13 games. The previous fastest - Fowler and Torres - managed it after 18 games
Post Lucas took more touches of the ball in the middle of the park than any other player on the pitch (78). However, Carragher was not far behind with 77
Post @DietmarHamann: "Great start to Sturridge's LFC career, will make a big difference having him from the start of the season next year."
Post @James_Carroll84: "Another good away performance. Sturridge obviously MOTM but Coutinho's through balls are an absolute joy to watch."
Post Sturridge took seven shots on goal throughout the 90 minutes, Coutinho hit four and Shelvey fired three, all from inside the box
Post Opta stats show that Carragher was Liverpool's most successful passer of the ball today. The Bootle Boy hit 67 passes with 95.5 per cent accuracy
Post Roy Evans: "Some of the football today was fantastic – and what I was impressed with most was some of the variation in the football."
Post John Aldridge: "We could have easily equalled the score at Newcastle. It was a tremendous hat-trick from Sturridge. Coutinho's passing is sensational – I was drooling."
Post @Rachel_Durand: "I'm just in love with @Phil_Coutinho."
Post @liamrjc1980: "I don't think I've ever seen a pass like @Phil_Coutinho's for @D_Sturridge's hat-trick #worldy."
Post @shawct: "I make it six times now that #LFC have come from behind to win this season. Fourth time since the end of February. Encouraging."
93 FULL-TIME: It's all over here - for the last half an hour or so, Liverpool have been in full control and played some fine football. Coutinho was superb, but Sturridge will grab the headlines with his first Liverpool hat-trick
91 You'll Never Walk Alone rings loud and proud around Craven Cottage
90 @GaryLineker: "A classy hat-trick by Sturridge against Fulham."
89 It's a Barclays Premier League debut for the young Scouse midfielder Coady as Coutinho gets a smattering of applause from the Fulham fans in acknowledgment of another fine showing as he departs
88 Substitution: Conor Coady for Philippe Coutinho:
86 I haven't been able to catch the replay, but Steve Hunter tells me that Carragher has just attempted to join Sturridge in his celebratory dance in front of the Liverpool fans
85 GOAL: It's 3-1 to Liverpool. The Reds broke down the field and Sturridge got a touch to send the ball over Schwarzer and into the net
84 Riise has just struck a rocket of a free-kick which flew past the Liverpool wall; however, Reina was down sharpish and he held on to the powerful effort
83 Riise is on and he's getting a fantastic reception from the travelling Kop, who are bellowing his name from the stand behind Schwarzer's goal
82 Substitution: John Arne Riise for Giorgos Karagounis:
81 @philkecho: "Great save AGAIN by Schwarzer. Sturridge plays Borini in and the Italian's shot is palmed away."
79 Absolutely superb from Borini. Coutinho finds him out wide, he surges forward and curls a ferocious shot that rebounds away off the inside of Schwarzer's far post
78 Now Henderson goes close as he charges onto a Downing cross and flicks the ball over the bar
76 Substitution: Fabio Borini for Jonjo Shelvey:
75 What a save from Reina. Hughes met Ruiz's corner with a powerful header but the Spaniard dived low to palm the ball wide
74 Sturridge's earlier strike means Liverpool have scored their most number of away goals in a Premier League season (37)
71 Substitution: Mladen Petric for Alex Kacaniklic:
69 @OLILFC11: "Sturridge is fast becoming my favorite player, for his skill and attitude on the field, and how he acts off it #PureQuality."
68 Sturridge breaks clear of the Fulham defence and tries to curl the ball past Schwarzer, but the 'keeper makes a fine save to deny the forward a hat-trick
63 @JamesPearceEcho: "Sturridge puts #LFC 2-1 up after Coutinho shot deflected into his path. Home fans furious as secs earlier pen appeal rejected at other end."
62 GOAL: The Reds take the lead! Coutinho scuffed his shot but it fell into the path of Sturridge, who fired home his second. It's 2-1
60 Craven Cottage explodes in anger towards Mark Halsey, who denies Fulham a penalty after Ruiz's attempted cross appears to hit Lucas on the hand in the box
58 @shajma: "What brilliant run from Glen Johnson. Deserved a goal."
57 Johnson drives at the Fulham defence and does brilliantly to get to the by-line before his attempted cross is side-footed clear by Hangeland
56 Carragher makes a crucial tackle on Kacaniklic in the box as the Fulham man shapes to shoot. Liverpool break down the field but Coutinho's effort is blocked as he aims to fire the ball home from range
54 Kacaniklic surges forward and aims for Reina's far post from the edge of the box, but he drags his left-footed effort wide
52 First Booking: Glen Johnson: The full-back is shown a yellow for his challenge on Enoh
51 Positive start to the second half from the Reds - they've reverted to a back-four of Enrique, Coates, Carragher and Johnson, with Downing pushing on down the right flank
48 A superb, mazy run from Sturridge sees him slalom past four or five white shirts, but he is forced out wide to the left and he lays the ball off for Enrique
46 Substitution: Jose Enrique for Andre Wisdom:
46 SECOND HALF: Fulham restart the game here at Craven Cottage
45 Half-time: It's 1-1 here at Craven Cottage. Berbatov nodded Fulham ahead; however, Sturridge hammered home an equaliser for the Reds
41 A heart-in-mouth moment for the travelling Reds as Riether finds Berbatov who almost diverts the ball over Reina and into the net but it's just wide.
38 @chris_kammy: "1-1 here at the Cottage, Berbatov with a header for Fulham & Sturridge with a rocket shot for the equaliser it's a decent game."
36 GOAL: Liverpool are level almost instantly with a stunning strike from Sturridge who takes down Wisdom's long ball and skips past Hughes before slamming home
33 GOAL: Berbatov heads Fulham into the lead as Riether's cross finds him unmarked in the six-yard box
31 ...Ruiz whips the ball in, Lucas leaps and nods clear as far as Enoh, who arrows a shot at goal. Reina is there though
30 Downing lunges into a tackle against Duff out on the right flank and Fulham have a free-kick in a dangerous position...
26 @JBcommentator: "The boy abandoned by Roy Hodgson for Paul Konchesky, Alex Kacaniklic, has been Fulham's only real threat so far."
24 Kacaniklic, the former Liverpool man, is looking sharp here. Cutting inside from the right, he draws three red shirts towards him before side-footing a fine pass across the face of goal which is a little too heavy for Berbatov
21 @crazy_nathy: "Coutinho looking good & I'm hoping Jonjo does well today...another screamer like the one against Utd U21s would be awesome!"
19 Then, from the corner, Karagounis fires the ball into the centre and no Liverpool player can clear the danger until Wisdom takes control and relieves the pressure
17 Kacaniklic ghosts in behind Johnson and aims a pass towards the near post for Ruiz to attack; however, it goes behind for a corner
15 @JamesPearceEcho: "Coutinho close to breaking deadlock after fine piece of skill. Schwarzer palms away his fierce 20 yarder."
14 Substitution: Urby Emanuelson for Kieran Richardson:
13 Coutinho rounds two Fulham players in the middle of the park with a sumptuous piece of skill before hammering the ball at Schwarzer
12 Shelvey's just had another chance here - the midfielder picked the ball up and drove into the Fulham area only to be dispossessed by Riether
11 More from Gillespie: "Good start for Liverpool. They've dominated possession and created a good opportunity already for Jonjo Shelvey."
10 Gary Gillespie on LFC TV: "I expect goals in this game." Let's hope he's right...
7 The Liverpool fans are in full voice here, going through their expansive repertoire of songs. The 'Team of Carraghers' chant is getting a good airing - as is the old Luis Garcia/Sangria one
5 @philkecho: "Chance for Sturridge as #LFC jumped quickly on a Fulham mistake. Couldn't get the power on his shot and it was saved."
4 Good early chance for Liverpool. Coutinho slides the ball into Henderson, who squares it for Sturridge, but he can't make clean contact and Schwarzer collects
2 Karagounis whips an early ball into the danger area for Berbatov to attack; however, the tall Bulgarian stays rooted to the spot in the box
1 KICK-OFF: Liverpool get us started and we're underway here
Pre And here come the teams - Carragher, captain in Gerrard's absence, leads the Reds out at Craven Cottage
Pre Liverpool have disappeared down the tunnel towards the changing rooms. On the way, they pass a banner that pretty much says it all: "Carra, 23, Legend."
Pre Back in the press box, Steve Hunter is rolling the tunes out as he builds up to kick-off in our live radio commentary. It was John Power, now it's The Justice Collective
Pre Time for shooting practice down on the field - Shelvey rifles one low past Jones before Downing curls a strike home after receiving the ball from assistant manager Colin Pascoe
Pre We've just been joined by Matt McCann and Steve Astall, Liverpool's press officers, who are devouring chicken balti pies as Fulham's mascot Billy the Badger looks on
Pre We believe Carragher and Wisdom will join Coates in the middle of the Reds' defence with Downing and Johnson operating as full-backs
Pre Both sides are out on the field going through their pre-match routines now. Daniel Sturridge and Philippe Coutinho are busy discussing tactics while Jamie Carragher is having a word with Andre Wisdom
Pre Fulham subs: Etheridge, Riise, Senderos, Petric, Frimpong, Rodallega, Emanuelson
Pre Fulham line up like this: Schwarzer, Richardson, Riether, Hughes, Hangeland, Enoh, Karagounis, Duff, Kacaniklic Ruiz, Berbatov
Pre Martin Skrtel misses today's match due to illness. Meanwhile, 17-year-old centre-back Lloyd Jones makes the bench for the first time
Pre Liverpool's bench: B Jones, Enrique, Assaidi, Borini, Suso, Coady, L Jones
Pre Here's the Liverpool starting XI for today's clash: Reina, Johnson, Downing, Wisdom, Coates, Carragher, Lucas, Henderson, Shelvey, Coutinho, Sturridge
Pre @JBcommentator: "Congratulations to @Dirk_18_Kuyt who plays his 500th League Game in the big Istanbul derby between Fenerbahçe and Galatasaray this evening"
Pre Liverpool have had 70 more shots than any other Premier League team this season – 691. Spurs are second.
Pre Jamie Carragher has played 506 league games – 6th in all-time Premier League table behind Heskey, Speed, Lampard, James and Giggs.
Pre Daniel Agger will miss only his 2nd PL game of the season today. His tally of 35 league games is 8 more than his previous highest.
Pre LFC TV will be live at 2pm BST with Countdown to Kick-off. Tweet your pre-match thoughts to @LFCTV and the best will appear on the channel.
Pre He was sent off on this ground in 2009 (along with Philipp Degen). All three of Carra's dismissals in a Liverpool shirt have come in London
Pre If he plays on Sunday, Carra will move ahead of the Fulham legend Johnny Haynes in playing in most fixtures between the clubs
Pre Jamie Carragher, with 19, has made more appearances for Liverpool against Fulham than any other player in the Reds' history. He has scored once - in a 4-0 win in December 2006
Pre Alternatively, use the #FFCvLFC hashtag to have your say
Pre Liverpoolfc.com journalist @philreade is taking charge of today's commentary service - Tweet him your thoughts on the game
Pre @NeilMellor33: "Early train to London for Fulham away #LFC"
Pre "Dreadful runs must end sometime, I'll say 2-1 home win."
Pre And Matt's prediction?
Pre "It will be fairly lively on Sunday, the ground is sold out, though our terrible form means there's not much optimism about. If we take an early lead, the noise level will rise."
Pre "On current form we're the worst team in the 92, with one point from our last six games."
Pre Meanwhile, we also caught up with Fulham fan Matt Doherty, who admitted he's going into the game today with low expectations
Pre "When you play for a club like Liverpool, we will have a lot of support travelling to watch the game so we have to make sure we do the right thing."
Pre "These two games can be important for the manager to watch us and to have a reflection about the performance and maybe what he wants to keep doing for next season."
Pre He said: "The league position is difficult to change now, but the manager is watching every day in training sessions and games."
Pre Nonetheless, Lucas Leiva stressed to Liverpoolfc.com why there is still much to play for
Pre Liverpool will look to overhaul Everton in the final two matches of the season, though with the Blues holding a five-point lead over the Reds it will be difficult
Pre The Reds' biggest league victory at Fulham came in May 2011 when Maxi scored a hat-trick in a 5-2 win with Dirk Kuyt and Luis Suarez netting the others
Pre In this fixture at Craven Cottage last season Liverpool had Jay Spearing sent off on 72 minutes in a 1-0 defeat. Clint Dempsey scored the winner five minutes from time
Pre Martin Skrtel and Steven Gerrard scored in the first half with Stewart Downing and Luis Suarez adding to the tally after the break
Pre Earlier this season Liverpool beat Fulham 4-0 at Anfield in the last game before Christmas
Pre They currently have 35, one fewer than their total in 2008-09. If they hit the net twice it will be their best away haul since 1989-90 when they scored 40. Last season they scored 23
Pre Liverpool are just two goals short of recording their highest tally of away goals scored in the Premier League
Pre Today represents the Reds' final away game of 2012-13 ahead of next weekend's last-day clash with QPR at Anfield
Pre Good morning and welcome to Liverpoolfc.com's live commentary service for today's clash with Fulham at Craven Cottage
Pre Here's the Liverpool starting XI for today's clash: Reina, Johnson, Downing, Wisdom, Coates, Carragher, Lucas, Henderson, Shelvey, Coutinho, Sturridge