At half-time the scores were level at 1-1, with Steven Gerrard's penalty on 44 minutes being cancelled out in short order by a debated and contentious equaliser from Guy Demel right on the whistle. A second penalty for Liverpool was won by Jon Flanagan in the second half, Gerrard again scored it and the Reds held on to run out 2-1 winners.
|Liverpool Player Ratings|
Quick Liverpool first-half analysis
MIGNOLET—Had dealt well with everything in the air until the equalising goal—which should have been a foul.
JOHNSON—Defensively solid for most of the game, though Downing has escaped him once and been able to get in behind on the counter.
SKRTEL—Very strong in the air. A good half.
SAKHO—A little off the pace to begin with but has mainly done well.
FLANAGAN—Diame is giving him a complete runaround.
GERRARD—Neat and incisive in alternate measures. Strong on the cover down the flanks.
COUTINHO—Influential early on with plenty of touches, but no killer ball.
HENDERSON—Not at the races really, needs to get more involved. Tough to find space infield.
STERLING—Looked lively in the opening stages but not enough runs in behind the defence.
STURRIDGE—Dropping deep to get possession, but too individualistic so far. Wasted one good chance.
SUAREZ—Not on his game either, losing possession easily. Still hit the bar and won a penalty.
Quick Liverpool second-half analysis
MIGNOLET—A very solid performance. He did well in the air and distributed well.
JOHNSON—His tendency to dwell on the ball was noticeable, but he did offer good width going forward after the shape change in midfield.
SKRTEL—An excellent performance, he was dominant against West Ham's physical forwards and surged forward into space at times.
SAKHO—A good performance considering he has been out so long.
FLANAGAN—Improved defensively after the break and won the all-important second penalty with a great surging run behind West Ham's defence.
GERRARD—Nerves of steel, this man. Another fine match-dictating performance.
LUCAS—Did well in a largely unfamiliar role and even contributed a few impressive final-third through-passes.
HENDERSON—Not at his best, especially going forward, but kept things ticking over in the middle.
STERLING—Liverpool's best play on the day overall. A scintillating second-half performance, full of intelligent running at West Ham's midfield and defence.
STURRIDGE—Couldn't get into the game enough and didn't link well today with his team-mates.
SUAREZ—Struck the bar twice and might have won another penalty, but wasn't anywhere near his best level. Only really had two other chances on goal.