Liverpool Live Blog: Reds Score Barrage of Second Half Goals, Triumph Over Oldham 5-1

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Liverpool Live Blog: Reds Score Barrage of Second Half Goals, Triumph Over Oldham 5-1

Final: Liverpool is through to the fourth round of the FA Cup, thanks to a 5-1 thumping of Oldham. 

The Reds scored a flurry of second-half goals that buried any hopes the League One team had of pulling off a shock.

Downing and Carroll got much-needed goals, and will be riding that confidence into LFC's next games. 

Gerrard, Shelvey and Spearing kept things under control in the middle and freed LFC's attackers to unlock Oldham's defense.

LFC will learn its fourth-round opponents when the draw is held on Sunday. But the Reds are the first team into the next round of the competition. 

That's all for now and thanks for joining us. Let's discuss this one on Twitter @NESNsoccer and Facebook. Be sure to keep an eye out for some news, fan reactions, analysis and opinion that is on the way on NESN.com.

95th minute, 5-1 Liverpool: It's Downing, who makes it five. Gerrard delivered the cross from the left and the LFC winger gets his first goal for his new team by steering his volley past Cisak from close range. 

And it's all over. 

94th minute, 4-1 Liverpool: Carroll could have made it five, had he aimed his header from Downing's cross on target. 

90th minute, 4-1 Liverpool: Carroll scores with a thunderbolt. He ran onto a delivery from the left and hit it hard and low to the near post. Cisak never had a chance.

It's the big man's 23rd birthday and he celebrates in some style. It's his fourth of the season. 

87th minute, 3-1 Liverpool: Kuyt shoots just wide of Cisak's near post. 

It's his last bit of action, as he's replaced by Carroll. 

85th minute, 3-1 Liverpool: Kelly combines with Downing on the right, frees himself, carries forward and shoots wide. 

The young defender hasn't seen much of the field in recent weeks, but he's been as dependable as ever in this third-round clash. 

81st minute, 3-1 Liverpool: Adeyemi is furious about something, and teammates are calming him down. 

79th minute, 3-1 Liverpool: That fighting spirit that Oldham showed in abundance seems to have gone. It looks like Shelvey's goal dealt the death-blow to their hopes of pulling off a shock. 

LFC is in firm control of the proceedings, and continues to press forward for the potential fourth. 

75th minute, 3-1 Liverpool: LFC making another change. Downing enters for the scintillating Bellamy.

The Welshman leaves to a nice applause as he was devastating on the right. His deliveries from set-pieces were always on target, and his (32-year-old) pace caused havoc for the Oldham defense. 

71st minute, 3-1 Liverpool: LFC makes a substitution. Flanagan comes on for Aurelio.

The Brazilian fullback was effective when he chose to go forward. 

68th minute, 3-1 Liverpool: Gerrard plays Bellamy forward with a deft flick to the right of the area, and the Welshman cuts his cross back to the waiting Shelvey. The LFC midfielder confidently hits his shot low past Cisak.

That might just be too much of a hurdle for the League One representatives to overcome.

65th minute, 2-1 Liverpool: It's the visitors that have looked like taking charge of things in the last five minutes or so. 

For them, a trip to Anfield is the biggest game of the year, and they will give their all to pull off a shock.

62nd minute, 2-1 Liverpool: Parker was set up by a nifty combination on the right, but he put his shot over the bar. 

57th minute, 2-1 Liverpool: Kelly is robbed of a goal by the goalkeeper Cisak. Gerrard sent a corner into the goal-mouth and Kelly got his head to it. He hit it low to the near post, but Cisak made and save with his out-stretched hand. 

55th minute, 2-1 Liverpool: Bellamy has been a force on the right and created another chance by with his pace and crossing. 

54th, 2-1 Liverpool: The second half opens as the first half ended, with LFC dictating the pace and direction of the game. The visitors are not going away without testing their famous opponents. 

47th minute, 2-1 Liverpool: Oldham wins an early free kick, and Simpson flights it into the area. Coates got his head to it, but it fell to an attacker at the far post. He couldn't direct his shot on goal.

Bellamy countered with a shot of his own. 

Halftime, 2-1 Liverpool: A lively first half comes to a close at Anfield. The Reds fell behind after Simpson scored, but Shelvey and Bellamy combined (sort of) to draw the Reds even. 

Gerrard has steadily grown in influence over the first 45 minutes, and this has coincided with Liverpool's control of the game. 

When he created and scored the penalty, it was a clear indication of how important the captain is to the fortunes of the club.

45th minute, 2-1 Liverpool: Gerrard makes no mistake of the penalty. He bangs it off the bar to the goalkeeper's left, giving the Reds the lead. 

44th minute, 1-1: It's a penalty for LFC. Gerrard powered his way through the middle, crossed from the right and Kuyt was fouled in the box, by a defender leaping onto his back. 

38th minute, 1-1: The pair of goals seemed to shock LFC into controlling the game. Gerrard is orchestrating from an advanced position in the midfield. The Reds have had the better of play for the last few minutes, and look to take a lead before halftime. 

33rd minute, 1-1: Oldham's short-lived dreams of an upset were almost buried. Maxi has a shot blocked by a bit of desperate defending, and Kuyt loses his footing as he squares up to hit the rebound. 

30th minute, 1-1: Bellamy responds just 66 seconds later with the equalizer. Shelvey cut in from the right and hit a shot from just inside the area. He hits his shot hard, and it deflects off of what looked like the Welshman's shoulder past Cisak. 

28th minute, 1-0 Oldham: Simpson scores a screamer to give the visitors the lead. He was found about 25 yards from the area, took a touch, swerved and hit it into the top corner with his left foot.

27th minute, 0-0: Maxi is pushed from behind and LFC wins a free kick near the left touch-line. 

Bellamy delivers a well-placed free kick to Kuyt's head, but the Dutchman's header goes wide. 

24th minute, 0-0: Gerrard is just starting to take more control of the action in the midfield. It's clear how much of a lift he gives the team, as he always seems to find a teammate with the right pass. 

22nd minute, 0-0: Gerrard and Kelly combine to send the young fullback on a surging run down the right. His progress is stopped, and Oldham counters with a chance of their own. Carragher blocks the shot, and a corner is awarded to the visitors. They make nothing of it, however. 

17th minute, 0-0: Games against opponents from lower divisions are always tricky for Premiership teams and this has started out as classic case. 

Oldham has shown greater energy and urgency, while LFC has taken a more methodical approach.

The visitors have created the better scoring chances, but haven't beaten Reina. 

14th minute, 0-0: On a corner kick, Adeyemi manages to get free in the box and flash his header high. 

12th minute, 0-0: Bellamy fires just high, after taking a pass from Gerrard. 

The LFC captain is trying to get better control of the tempo of this game, as Oldham has had the brighter start. 

Ninth minute, 0-0: Kuqi is involved in a tussle with Coates 30 yards from goal. He sheds the Uruguayan's challenge and bore down on Reina's goal. Carragher tries to intercept him, but the burly striker beats the LFC defender. It was only an inaccurate shot that saved LFC from an early deficit.

He also had a teammate nearby, who had a better angle, but he took it himself. 

Sixth minute, 0-0: Bellamy responds by driving down the right and finding Kuyt's head with a cross. The Dutchman misses the target with his header. 

Fifth minute, 0-0: It's the visitors from League One that have taken the early initiative in this game. 

Oldham put a cross into the box, that Reina punches clear. It wasn't entirely convincing but he still cleared it from danger. 

Second minute, 0-0: Oldham flighted a free-kick into the box and Gerrard clears the loose ball out for a corner. 

Pregame: As expected, Dalglish has rotated the team, and it's a veteran-heavy ones. Carragher and Gerrard will start and serve as captain and vice-captain. 

Aurelio will see his first game action since the friendly against Rangers in October.

Spearing, Shelvey and Coates will provide the youthful energy for the Reds. 

2:30 p.m.: Here are the lineups:

Liverpool

Pepe Reina (25), goalkeeper
Martin Kelly (34), right back 
Jamie Carragher (23), center back
Sebastian Coates (16), center back 
Fabio Aurelio (6), left back
Steve Gerrard (8), midfielder
Jay Spearing (20), midfielder
Jonjo Shelvey (33), midfielder
Dirk Kuyt (18), midfielder
Maxi (11), forward
Craig Bellamy (39), forward

Substitutes

Doni (32), goalkeeper
Martin Skrtel (37), defender
Jon Flanagan (38), defender 
Charlie Adam (26), midfielder
Jordan Henderson (14), midfielder
Stuart Downing (19), midfielder
Andy Carroll (9), forward

Oldham Athletic

Alex Cisak (1), goalkeeper
Kieran Lee (19), left back
Jean Yves Mvoto (2), center back
Zander Diamond (5), center back
Tom Adeyemi (11), right back
Dean Furman (8), midfielder
James Wesolowski (4), midfielder
Chris Taylor (18), midfielder 
Robbie Simpson (10), striker
Luca Scapuzzi (20), striker
Shefki Kuqi (32), striker

Substitutes 

12 a.m. ET: Liverpool enters this season's FA Cup with a third-round clash against League One's Oldham Athletic. The Reds hope to ease past their opponents from England's third division, and advance to the next round of a competition they've won seven times.

The festive schedule ended on a sour note for LFC, as it suffered a 3-0 loss at Manchester City on Tuesday. They have a good opportunity to bounce back with a home game against a team that, on paper, is no match for them.

But each round of the FA Cup produces a shock or two and Oldham will try to bring down its illustrious opponents. Manager Paul Dickov's team struggled in the first half of its League One season. It currently sits in 14th place in the 24-team league.

Lower league teams have been known to play above their average level against top-flight opposition and Liverpool will certainly be aware of that trend.

Kenny Dalglish holds the FA Cup in the highest regard and, although he may rotate his team to a degree, he will certainly field a strong team. It may be too early for the fit-again Steve Gerrard to appear in the starting 11, but he will likely play a role. Also, vice-captain Jamie Carragher could see his first action since LFC's win over Aston Villa on Dec. 18.

Join us at 3 p.m. for our coverage of Liverpool-Oldham. We'll have all the action right here.

Have a question for Marcus Kwesi O'Mard? Send it to him via Twitter at @NESNsoccer or send it here. He will pick a few questions to answer every week for his mailbag.

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