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Liverpool Game 1 2011

The sun shone on Anfield as 27 excited Liverpool fans arrived at the famous old stadium eager to do themselves justice on their big day. Excitement among the Reds fans taking part in the game would have been only heightened with the involvement of Kop heroes Jan Molby and Jim Beglin managing, with Howard Gayle and John Durnin pulling on the treasured jersey for another time. The game at Anfield saw one of the best atmospheres of the Football Aid season.

Friday 20th May 2011
Liverpool Home vs Liverpool Away
Game 1
Kick Off: 10:00am
Managers: Jan Molby and Jim Beglin
Legends: Howard Gayle and John Durnin
Match Officials: Gary Dinsmore, Dave Chappel, Dylan Chappel and Ian Arrands

The Reds got the game underway with an evenly contested first 5 minutes with neither team really getting hold of the ball. Howard Gayle showed his quality, creating the first chance, with a delightful ball over through the Home team’s defence. Michael Wrigley took the ball forward but a square pass didn’t reach his intended target and fell into the goalkeeper Stuart Green’s arms.

Jim Beglin’s team was a little bit shaky when Jan Molby’s Home side started to gain control of play, keeping the ball at the Away end and having the majority of the shots at goal. However it was the Away sided that created the first real chance, the Home defence missed a simple header creating a nightmare scenario for Green, but Derek Burman made a last ditch tackle to stop the Away no.10 Ibrahim from grabbing the opener.

John Durnin got the Reds settled down showing real experience and link up play that encouraged passing football to flow around this superb Anfield pitch. Out of nowhere Stephen Callister dispossessed the Away centre midfield and off he went. He beat three men before placing a shot comfortably past the keeper into the bottom corner. Jan Molby was thrilled to have taken the lead! (1-0)

From centre the Away side showed real determination to display their skill throughout the match, keeping the ball in play and pushing forward with Gayle desperate to bag a goal from long range. Michael Wrigley also came close from a cross from the left when he found himself in plenty of space, but his shot rose over the bar.

The Away team moved the ball around with the ball with great dexterity but lacked that final cutting edge to level the scoring. This led to a long ball from Callister over the top for which Ian Carmichael came rushing off his line to collect. Right back Paul Curson had read the danger from two nearby Red attackers and attempted to clear the ball at the same time. Unfortunately this lead to an own goal with the ball lobbed over the goalkeepers stretching hands and bouncing into the roof of the net. (2-0)

20 minutes in and Howard Gayle playing left back had drifted into the centre of midfield leaving his position wide open that could create problems for his team. Beglin’s side kept pilling on the pressure with dangerous deliveries into the box but nothing too troubling for the Red defence. When Dean Livingstone went down inured it gave both sides the opportunity to take on some much needed water on this scorching day and take on some much needed wisdom from the managers.

The Away team nearly grabbed a goal back; a ball over the top from Marco Fregapane saw John Wrigley through on goal but his right foot effort was saved by Green, again keeping his team 2-0 up. With 5 minutes to go before half time the Away team were rewarded for their perseverance and pulled one back deservedly. A route one kick from keeper Carmichael bounced, turning the Home defence. John Wrigley beat Burman in the air and slotted a pass through for Michael Wrigley to pass the keeper and roll the ball home. Jim Beglin could see his side growing stronger and levelling the game now. (2-1)

The Away side won a free kick minutes before half time in the left hand channel. Right footed Gayle took it. The in swinging ball caused chaos for the Reds defence with no one getting a touch nearly drifting into the net at the far post. If only someone had gotten a touch…

And they came close to getting the equaliser from a defence splitting move built up by centre half Lee Wilson. Ibrahim only had the keeper to beat and out of nowhere Burman put in a phenomenal sliding challenge from behind that stopped him from pulling the trigger.

However perseverance paid off and the game was levelled right on the stroke of half time. The corner was flighted into the back post as Marco Fregapane leapt like a salmon to head the ball into the back of the net. What a fantastic comeback! (2-2)

Half-Time: Liverpool Home 2 - 2 Liverpool Away

After an inspiring half time team talk from two footballing legends Jan Molby and Jim Beglin the teams came out fired up for the second half. Substitutions were made by both managers who were eager to make an impact to win the game. With the Away team taking centre they definitely wanted to keep up the momentum created at the end of the first half.

As the half progressed, it was apparent both sides evenly matched and both had their fair share of chances to score. Captain Jamie Moryoussef was presented an excellent opportunity for the Reds, followed by Away striker John Wrigley for the Whites, but neither goal was breached and the scoreline remained.

The Away side had the first clear cut chance 15 minutes into the second half when they counter attacked from a broken down corner by Ian Maddock. The Whites played the ball round to Michael Wrigley on the left. John Wrigley made a dashing run into the penalty area onto the through ball but another extraordinary tackle from right back Lee Holden kept the game all square. John Wrigley came close shortly after, his effort leaving the keeper rooted to the spot, but it whispered past the post.

Just less than half an hour had been played in the half and the game up until then had been evenly balanced with no side breaking into either penalty area. Finally the Home team strikers linked up well with David Bagnall’s unstoppable one-two pass into Maddock who attempted a lob that was wide of the target. The home side looked like opening the scoring first but Molby’s team couldn’t find the finishing touch.

Speedy Usman Ibrahim with his bright yellow boots constantly put pressure on the Red team defence, getting behind a few times but couldn’t execute a finish.

Scrappy mistakes made by both squads and a crunching Jamie Carragher-esque tackle from Home defender Derek Smith formed the next possibility. Durnin strolled forward, skipping past two players, played a pin point pass ball through to the run of Maddock.His first time stab at the ball went wide of the post.

Dean Werrett had a faultless second half not putting a foot wrong The big tall midfielder had an excellent game

The Home side created a half chance moments from the full time whistle, Lee Holden noticed the goalkeeper off this line and attempted a long range lob. To Carmichael’s relief it sailed over onto the roof of the net.

Full-Time: Liverpool Home 2 - 2 Liverpool Away

Man of the Match (Home): Stephen Callister
Man of the Match (Away): Michael Wrigley
Moment of the Match: Daniel Burman

Home Team: Green, Burman, John Durnin, Livingstone, Burman, Jones, Moryoussef, Hickey, Bagnall, Callister, Maddock, Walker, Smith, Holden, Werrett

Manager: Jan Molby

Mascots: Raphi Moryoussef

Away Team: Carmichael, Curson, Howard Gayle, Wilson, Mooney, Furlong, Fregapane, Loggie, Michael Wrigley, Abid Ibrahim, John Wrigley, Aziz, Curson, Furrukh Abid, Usman Ibrahim

Manager: Jim Beglin

Mascots: Georgia Furlong