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Played
January 2, 2013 7:45 PM GMT
Anfield — Liverpool
Referee:‬ P. Dowd‎
Attendance:‬ 44228‎
 
 
26′ Luis Suárez
 
52′ Luis Suárez
 
Top of the Match
Luis Suárez
Luis Suárez
Liverpool
Luis Suárez
Luis Suárez
Liverpool
Flop of the Match
Matthew Kilgallon
Matthew Kilgallon
Sunderland
Matthew Kilgallon
Matthew Kilgallon
Sunderland

Liverpool 3-0 Sunderland: Suarez sparkles again for Rodgers’ improving Reds

The Uruguayan forward was in superb form, grabbing two goals and setting up the other for Raheem Sterling, with Martin O'Neill's side guilty of some sloppy defending throughout

By James McManus

EPL - Liverpool v Sunderland, Luis Suarez and Raheem Sterling
Getty Images
Liverpool produced a dominant display to comfortably beat a desperately disappointing Sunderland side 3-0 at Anfield on Wednesday evening.

The hosts surged into the lead through Raheem Sterling who produced a fantastic lob to beat Simon Mignolet in the Sunderland goal after racing onto Luis Suarez's fantastic pass.

The Uruguayan doubled their advantage before the half-hour mark after bursting past a cynical challenge from Carlos Cuellar near the touchline, before finishing with aplomb with the outside of his right boot past the goalkeeper.

Some exceptionally poor defending allowed Suarez to find himself in acres of space after latching on to Steven Gerrard's brilliant long pass into feet before calmly slotting home to make it three.

Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers made two changes to the side that beat QPR last time out, with Andre Wisdom and Lucas coming in for Jose Enrique and Joe Allen.

Sunderland boss Martin O'Neill meanwhile made just the one change to the team that lost to Tottenham at home at the weekend, with the injured John O'Shea replaced by Danny Rose.

After a bright opening from the hosts, Stewart Downing forced Mignolet into a fine save at his near post as he tipped the winger's free kick from a promising position outside the area behind for a corner.

They didn't have to wait much longer to take the lead in the 18th minute through Sterling, though, after he latched on to Suarez's looped pass over the back four and coolly lobbed the ball over the onrushing Mignolet.

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The visitors should have grabbed an equaliser shortly afterwards following a flowing move involving Steven Fletcher and Stephane Sessegnon which resulted in James McClean screwing his effort well wide with the goal gaping.

They were made to pay for this profligacy in front of goal in the 26th minute when Suarez doubled Liverpool's tally after out-muscling Cuellar wide on the right before driving into the box and slotting home through Mignolet's legs.

With the game becoming increasingly open, Matt Kilgallon wasted an excellent chance at the back post, with Pepe Reina saving well with Steven Fletcher lurking before Downing went close after another breakaway move after great play from Henderson.

After the break, Suarez once again played Sterling through with a sublime pass around the corner, but Mignolet pulled off a smart stop down low to his right to push the ball away.

With the visitors struggling to get any sort of tempo going, though, after a sustained period of possession, Suarez bagged his second of the game in the 52nd minute after collecting Gerrard's fabulous 50-yard pass before burying the ball into the bottom corner.

It took a flying save from Mignolet to tip Gerrard's deflected volley over the bar, before saving well with his legs to deny Suarez his hat-trick moments later.

Glen Johnson and Joe Allen both saw goals correctly disallowed and despite carving the visitors open at will, Liverpool couldn't add to their tally and claimed all three points.


Liverpool

25
Pepe Reina
Goalkeeper
3.00
2
Glen Johnson
Defender
3.50
5
Daniel Agger
Defender
3.00
37
Martin Skrtel
Defender
74′
3.00
47
Andre Wisdom
Defender
3.50
8
Steven Gerrard
Midfielder
26′ 52′
4.00
14
Jordan Henderson
Midfielder
67′
3.50
19
Stewart Downing
Midfielder
3.50
21
Lucas Leiva
Midfielder
3.00
31
Raheem Sterling
Midfielder
19′ 57′
3.50
7
Luis Suárez
Striker
19′ 26′ 52′
4.50

Sunderland

3.00
22
Simon Mignolet
Goalkeeper
3.00
3
Danny Rose
Midfielder
73′
1.50
27
1.50
24
2.50
7
3.00
8
Craig Gardner
Midfielder
2.00
14
Jack Colback
Midfielder
3.00
11
Adam Johnson
Midfielder
3.00
-
James McClean
Midfielder
60′
3.00
28
2.50
9

Substitutes

1
Bradley Jones
Goalkeeper
 - 
23
 - 
49
Jack Robinson
Midfielder
 - 
18
Nuri Sahin
Midfielder
 - 
24
Joe Allen
Midfielder
57′
3.00
-
Suso
Midfielder
67′
2.50
8
Jonjo Shelvey
Midfielder
 - 

Substitutes

 - 
20
 - 
2
 - 
19
3.00
-
David Vaughan
Midfielder
73′
2.50
10
 - 
10
2.00
16

Coach/Manager

-
 - 

Coach/Manager

 - 
-
 
  • Goal
  • Own Goal
  • Penalty
  • Penalty Missed
  • Yellow Card
  • Assist
  • Penalty Save
  • Penalty Shootout Goal
  • Penalty Shootout Miss
  • Yellow Card / Red Card
  • Red Card
  • Substitution IN
  • Substitution OUT
  • Injury
  • Goal.com Rating
  • Goal.com Man of the Match
  • Goal.com Flop of the Match
  • Top & Flop Global Ranking
  • Fans' Man of the Match
  • Fans' Flop of the Match
Results
 
Top Scorers
Player   Goals Penalties
Luis Suárez Luis Suárez
Striker
Liverpool
30 0
Daniel Sturridge Daniel Sturridge
Striker
Liverpool
20 0
Yaya Touré Yaya Touré
Midfielder
Manchester City
18 6
Wayne Rooney Wayne Rooney
Striker
Man Utd.
15 2
Sergio Agüero Sergio Agüero
Striker
Manchester City
15 0