Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard lauds Craig Bellamy as 'the difference' in victory over Manchester City

The hosts battled to a 2-2 draw with the Premier League leaders at Anfield on Wednesday to book a place in the League Cup final with a 3-2 aggregate victory

Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard hailed Craig Bellamy for making the difference after the Reds picked up a hard-fought 2-2 draw against Manchester City to progress to the League Cup final.

The match started with the hosts 1-0 up from the previous leg at the Etihad Stadium thanks to a Gerrard penalty, but Nigel de Jong gave City the lead 30 minutes in, before Edin Dzeko scored to cancel out the England international’s equaliser.

With 15 minutes to go, Bellamy struck to bring the score to 2-2 - 3-2 to Liverpool on aggregate - and despite City’s best efforts, they couldn’t take the lead, making Bellamy the hero in his captain’s mind.

Speaking to Sky Sports after the match, Gerrard said: "Craig was the difference.

"His pace was always a threat and we know that if a chance falls to him he can finish. It's a big thanks to him.

"We had to be positive and brave. Man City have so much quality and our decision to attack them paid off.

"Joe is a big character but I don't feel sorry for him. He's a top keeper and he will play in many finals. But it's our turn now and we have to go and lift that trophy."

Gerrard also commented on Liverpool’s lack of domestic finals in recent years, believing it has been significantly too long for a club the size of the Reds to go without a cup final.

"It's a great feeling, it's been a while," he said.

"Since playing at Cardiff in 2006, it's been too long for this club. I'm delighted for everyone, especially the fans."

Bellamy was also pleased with the night, however he was more delighted with who Liverpool are set to play than with his goal, as he booked a meeting with former club and home town Cardiff in the final.

"The omens were looking good going into tonight after I saw Cardiff go through,” the Welshman said.

"I was delighted for them and this couldn't be a better final for me.

"Cardiff means so much to me. It's funny how football can work out at times."