The One That Got Away
Liverpool’s League Cup Final dream has gotten away… we’ve wanted to make this happen so badly but now it is all over.
The dream is over
What can I say?
The dream is over
There’s so much to say about football and it can get complicated sometimes. Discussing tactics and formations and lineups and more. But if you truly want a simplistic answer (people have just been asking “WHY?” (did we lose), the simple is answer is – “IF YOU DON’T SCORE, YOU DON’T WIN”. Liverpool did not manage to score even one goal in this game. If you don’t even score, the only thing you can ever do is get a goalless draw or lose. That’s rather simple.
In the case of a League Cup Semi Final two leg tie, away goals count! This makes scoring even more important if you’ve reached the second leg and the opponent already has an “away goal”, which Chelsea did manage to score at Anfield. Even though we didn’t get beaten in that game, we drew 1-1 with them and that meant they only had to draw with us 0-0 in the second leg and wait for the final whistle (after extra time) in order to claim their place in the Final.
From early on in this game, Chelsea “parked the bus”. They clearly were going to play rather defensively in hopes that we would never be able to score and that they would be able to use their first leg goal to assist them in progressing in the competition. But as it happened, they didn’t need to use their away goal to win this, because they actually scored once in this second leg and raised the aggregate scoreline to Chelsea 2-1 Liverpool.
Their goal came in extra time. If they had scored it before the regular 90 minutes was up, they’d have won the game earlier than before having to play another half hour of football. We still had a chance to get our appearance in the Cup Final at this point. It was a player Luis Suarez knows well (and has previously bitten) who would score the goal, Branislav Ivanovic. He jumped into the air, over Mario Balotelli and headed in to claim the only goal of the game. The fans I know were cursing the rather weak defence Balotelli had put up, his man lost him and got the space he needed although to be fair – Mario is not a defender, he’s a natural striker.
Once that goal had gone in, the only hope we had left was to score ONCE (yeah, just one goal – seems like very little to have to do) and then the game would have gone to penalties by the time the referee blew his final whistle, assuming no more goals went in. Liverpool have a long, successful history with penalty taking. Most Reds fans would have been confident that we could have won a penalty shoot out with Chelsea. It was very frustrating to see Liverpool not be able to score a single goal that would have most likely helped them on their way (to the penalty shoot out they would win and) another Cup Final. We never would find the single goal we needed and Chelsea would win on aggregate, CHELSEA 2 – 1 LIVERPOOL.
The fans will be heartbroken of course but the person I feel most (sympathy) for is Steven Gerrard. With this being his last season at Liverpool, we really want him to claim all the trophies he can before he heads off to America to play for the Los Angeles Galaxy. I’m sorry to say this won’t be one of them. We still have high hopes for the Europa League and the FA Cup and to claim a respectable position in the Premier League by the end of the season. Plenty to try and achieve by May (2015). We’ll focus on the rest now, no longer being distracted by the League Cup.
Liverpool have a Premier League fixture coming up next as they face West Ham in a few days time.
Until then, keep your heads held high and walk on with hope in your hearts, Reds. You’ll Never Walk Alone. Your Anfield Family is walking with you.
[written by] Stuart Drewery.
I’m an Englishman (born and raised in Liverpool in the 80s). My whole family including my parents and grandparents were Liverpool fans so i was born into being a red.
I’ve seen Liverpool win the league (about 25 years ago) and I’ve been 100% loyal and committed while supporting the Reds through all the good times AND the bad times since the 80s.
I’m a die hard Liverpool fan (only supported ONE club in my whole life, Liverpool) and one of the most dedicated fans you’ll ever meet.