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Premier League

  • October 22, 2011
  • • 12:30 PM
  • • Anfield, Liverpool
  • Referee: P. Walton
  • • Attendance: 44931
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Liverpool 1-1 Norwich City: Grant Holt header gives Canaries deserved point after Craig Bellamy opener for flat Reds

Liverpool 1-1 Norwich City: Grant Holt header gives Canaries deserved point after Craig Bellamy opener for flat Reds

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The home side had many chances in a frenetic match, but in injury time, an Andy Carroll miss and a John Ruddy save denied them a winner and gave the visitors a well-deserved point

Liverpool was held by a resilient Norwich City side as Grant Holt came off the bench to cancel out Craig Bellamy's first-half opener in a thrilling 1-1 Premier League draw at Anfield.

Kenny Dalglish named striker Bellamy for his first Premier League start since rejoining the club from Manchester City, with recovered captain Steven Gerrard continuing in midfield. Paul Lambert kept faith with the side that beat Swansea a week previously, with Canaries skipper Holt forced to settle for the bench.

Liverpool started brightly as Martin Skrtel headed against the crossbar from a corner before Luis Suarez fired wide. A fraught opening 10 minutes was nearly capped with an excellent goal when Bellamy, fed superbly down the left by Adam, swept it in to Suarez in the area, who hit a one-touch effort that was seemingly goalbound before John Ruddy intervened to somehow divert onto the post. Stewart Downing looked destined to volley the rebound in but he fluffed the chance.

While the visitors threatened through Steve Morison, Liverpool largely continued to dominate possession.

Just when Liverpool looked to be going into half-time with nothing to show for their superiority, Bellamy profited from a ricochet as he sped towards the area, giving him space for a shot that took a significant deflection off Marc Tierney and bobbed into the net as the last action of the half.

The game resumed with Norwich looking to peg the Reds back immediately. Morison showed impressive strength to hold the ball up on the edge of the area and smuggle it to Pilkington, whose snap-shot was well saved.

A great chance for the home side followed. Suarez controlled the ball well before leaving Leon Barnett for dead and shooting, but a deflection from Russell Martin’s last-minute tackle saw it hit the post and come free.

With Liverpool again on top, Lambert brought Holt into the mix to partner Morison, and the tactical change paid off almost immediately. On the hour, Pilkington delivered an excellent cross from the right. Jose Reina came for it but got tangled with his defenders and Holt remained calm to bury a fine header into the waiting net.

With the hosts in shock, an invigorated Norwich came forward again and Holt was allowed to jump in the area untroubled. His header, aimed for the far post, was palmed away strongly by Reina.

Liverpool pushed back with the impressive Suarez continuing to threaten, and he had a number of close efforts, only to find himself frustrated in his quest to put one in the back of the net as the game went on.

Liverpool, desperate, sought the towering Carroll at the end, and deep in stoppage time a cross found the hulking striker in the box for what should have been the decisive blow, but the £35 million man contrived to head wide in a poor miss.

Just when the Reds must have thought they had blown it, a final chance arrived through the ever-threatening Suarez. The forward aimed a classy volley at goal but Ruddy produced a moment of magic to leap up and deny him to salvage the point at full-time.

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