Luis Suarez Shines Brightest As Manager-Less Liverpool Outguns Queens Park Rangers in Premier League

Luis Suarez, Clint Hill, Stephane Mbia, Julio CesarLuis Suarez ensured Liverpool ended 2012 in style with two goals in a 3-0 win at Queens Park Rangers.

The Reds were without manager Brendan Rodgers, who was out due to illness, but he would have been thrilled with what he saw from his sick bed in Merseyside.

The game was won before halftime thanks to two goals from Suarez and another courtesy of Daniel Agger, as Liverpool recovered from a disappointing Boxing Day loss at Stoke City.

It was very much the Suarez show. After just three minutes he’d made his intentions clear, forcing a save from distance after rounding his man.

In the 10th minute it was 1-0, with No. 7 receiving possession 30 yards from goal before taking out defender Clint Hill with one touch and then rolling into the bottom corner.

Six minutes later the advantage was doubled when Suarez slalomed into the box and crossed for Raheem Sterling. The ball was cleared into the Uruguayan’s path, and he again proved himself clinical, increasing his tally for the season to 16 in all competitions.

The home support began to turn, but the assault wasn’t over. In the 28th minute, Stewart Downing executed a short corner to Steven Gerrard, whose whipped cross was nutted low and hard into the net by Agger.

Gerrard and Jordan Henderson almost added their names to the scoresheet before halftime, while the only threat from QPR came via Adel Taarabt, whose occasional touches of inspiration denied Pepe Reina an afternoon off.

Stand-in bosses Colin Pascoe and Mike Marsh likely warned against complacency during the interval, this being the ground where Liverpool abdicated a 2-0 lead last season to lose 3-2. One man instrumental in that turnaround was Djibril Cisse, but his afternoon was cut short by manager Harry Redknapp with 45 minutes remaining.

The second period began in the same way as the first, with Suarez testing Julio Cesar, this time with a left-foot whack from just inside the area.

But that was where the similarities ended. QPR was now displaying resolve, and Armand Traore almost instigated a goal when he flashed the ball across the six-yard box. Jamie Mackie just couldn’t extend his foot far enough.

Stephane Mbia also came close from a free kick, requiring Reina to make a save following a foul on Taarabt that earned substitute Lucas Leiva a yellow card.

Despite these chances, a comeback never looked likely, although there was bad news for the visitors in the 71st minute when Jose Enrique limped off the field holding his hamstring. Suso was introduced.

Liverpool will now hope to make it a respectable three wins out of four festive fixtures when it entertains Sunderland on Wednesday.

Liverpoolfc.com man of the match: Luis Suarez.

Yardbarker

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