Liverpool Live Blog: Craig Bellamy Scores Only LFC Goal, As Reds Drop Premier League Game at Bolton 3-1


January 21, 2012

Liverpool Live Blog: Craig Bellamy Scores Only LFC Goal, As Reds Drop Premier League Game at Bolton 3-1 Final, 3-1 Bolton:Bolton has won just its second home game of the season, downing Liverpool 3-1. Nigel Reo-Coker's first-half goal stands as the game-winner.

Liverpool's recent struggles in the Premier League continued at Bolton. The Reds started slowly, and went down early. Mark Davies' goal gave them an early test that was not met over the course of the game.

LFC had a chance to impose itself on the game after Bellamy's goal. But Steinsson's 50th minute strike robbed it of the necessary belief to do so.

The Reds now sit in seventh place in the Premier League, falling six points behind fourth place Chelsea.

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

88th minute, 3-1 Bolton: N'Gog's day is finished. Kevin Davies is the replacement, and the former LFC man has a huge grin on his face as he exits.

The Bolton forward is another player who gave a good account of himself. 

84th minute, 3-1 Bolton: Eagles cuts in from the left and hits a shot that deflects off Skrtel and goes out for a corner.

The former Manchester United winger has shown well in this one. 

80th minute, 3-1 Bolton: Kuyt and Downing had an immediate impact, but haven't been able to turn it into a sustained advantage. 

We get the sense that the Reds will chalk this one up as a bad day at the office. 

78th minute, 3-1 Bolton: We're at the point in the game where LFC needs to assert itself. 

Bellamy takes a pass from Reina on a counter-attack, but his shot is saved.  

71st minute, 3-1 Bolton: Agger steps forward again, and shoots this time. But his drive rattles the crossbar. 

70th minute, 3-1 Bolton: It sure is windy out there. Reo-Coker's drive from 20 yards out goes out for a throw-in. 

64th minute, 3-1 Bolton: Adam and Maxi are coming off. Downing and Kuyt enter the fray.

58th minute, 3-1 Bolton: The shell-shocked Reds haven't responded to Steinsson's goal as supporters would have hoped. 

Their passing remains disjointed and they seem vulnerable when Bolton is in possession.

50th minute, 3-1 Bolton: Steinsson restores Bolton's two-goal lead.

Wheater headed Petrov's corner kick at the far corner of the six yard box to the Icelandic defender. 

He shed his marker and hit the volley low, hard and into the corner of the goal. Reina never had a chance. 

47th minute, 2-1 Bolton: Adam shows a bit of attacking drive, but his early shot is blocked. 

Halftime: The first half is finished, and the Reds will have some adjustments to make during the break. 

Bolton's pressing has caused LFC problems. The usually slick-passing Reds have not been able to build their play from the back to the front because of the the home team's approach. Defenders have been pressured into launching balls forward. 

Both Bolton goals were the result of surging runs near the center of the LFC defense. The absence of a holding midfielder has been felt in this one. Eagles, Davies and Reo-Coker have combined to slice open the Reds' defense at key moments. 

Bellamy's goal saw LFC take a direct approach and catch Bolton up the field. Carroll's header allowed Bellamy to use his speed to devastating effect.

LFC needs to add some width to its attack. Enrique and Johnson offer so much going forward, but the fullbacks have been pressed back for much of the game. Bellamy and Carroll have combined well, but Maxi has yet to make an impact. 

48th minute (stoppage time), 2-1 Bolton: Agger and Adam foul N'Gog, giving Bolton a free kick in a dangerous spot.

Petrov powers his shot, but Reina stretches to save it. 

44th minute, 2-1 Bolton: How crucial will Bellamy's goal turn out to be? We won't know until the end of the game. 

But scoring the goal before halftime will certainly affect Dalglish's halftime talk.

37th minute, 2-1 Bolton: LFC punishes Bolton's high line, and cuts the lead in half. Bellamy is the goal scorer.

Carroll sent Bellamy in behind the defense with a header. The Welshman ran onto it, took a touch and slotted it past the on-rushing Bogdan.

35th minute, 2-0 Bolton: Carroll sends Bellamy into the Bolton area with a well-placed through pass. Bellamy runs onto it and fires directly at Bogdan. 

29th minute, 2-0 Bolton: Reo-Coker scores to give Bolton a two-goal lead.

N'Gog and Eagles (him again) worked a one-two on the LFC left. Eagles emerged with it at the top of the area. He had a little space and found Reo-Coker on a late run with a chip. The former England U-21 international beat Reina with authority. 

29th minute, 1-0 Bolton: There's a penalty appeal, as Knight appears to have handled it in the area. 

23rd minute, 1-0 Bolton: Bolton's playing a pressing game that is causing LFC some difficulty. Its pressing the Reds high up the field, causing defenders to play long passes directly to the forwards. 

LFC is much less dangerous when the play does not build through the midfield. 

18th minute, 1-0 Bolton: Henderson tests Bogdan from distance, but the Bolton keeper makes an assured save.

Agger created the chance by stepping forward from defense with the ball, and finding the LFC midfielder at the top of the area. 

15th minute, 1-0 Bolton: The Reds are only now starting to show some urgency in their approach. 

The first 15 minutes have been, at best, indifferent. Bolton's lead isn't a reflection of its superiority in the game, rather a harsh punishment of LFC's unfocused start. 

Eighth minute, 1-0 Bolton: Eagles nearly makes it two for Bolton. He dispossessed Enrique on the left, dribbled along the goal line and hit a toe-poke from close range that he couldn't get on target. 

Sixth minute, 1-0 Bolton: Was just writing about the slow start from both teams before Davies struck. LFC hasn't shown its usual zest from the opening whistle. 

Bolton hadn't either, and the goal came from a moment that had no real danger in it. 

Fourth minute, 1-0 Bolton: Mark Davis gives the home team an early lead. He surged from the top of the area through the center of the LFC defense and slotted his shot past Reina. It's only his second of the season. 

Pregame: Dalglish has reverted to a four-man back-line. A heatlhy Agger and Skrtel are back together at the heart of the Reds defense.

Carroll starts again, as does Bellamy.

For Bolton, all eyes will be on the former LFC striker N'Gog. He's only hit two goals this season, but could take the field against his former club with something to prove.

12 p.m.: Here are the lineups: 


Pepe Reina (25), goalkeeper
Glen Johnson (2), right back
Martin Skrtel (37), defender
Daniel Agger (5), defender
Jose Enrique (3), left back
Steve Gerrard (8), midfielder
Charlie Adam (26), midfielder
Jordan Henderson (14), midfielder
Maxi Rodriguez (11), forward
Craig Bellamy (39), forward
Andy Carroll (9), striker


Doni (32), goalkeeper
Martin Kelly (34), defender
Jamie Carragher (23), defender
Sebastian Coates (16), defender
Jonjo Shelvey (33), midfielder
Stewart Downing (19), midfielder
Dirk Kuyt (18), forward

Bolton Wanderers

Adam Bogdan (1), goalkeeper
Sam Ricketts (18), left back
Zat Knight (12), center back
David Wheater (31), center back
Gretar Steinsson (2), right back
Martin Petrov (10), midfielder
Nigel Reo-Coker (19), midfielder
Chris Eagles (7), midfielder
Mark Davies (16), midfielder
Fabrice Muamba (6), midfielder
David N'Gog (24), striker


Jay Lynch (43), goalkeeper 
Dedryck Boyata (25), defender
Joe Riley (39), defender
Darren Pratley (21), midfielder
Michael O'Halloran (36), forward
Tuncay (9), striker 
Kevin Davies (14), striker

12 a.m. ET: For the first time in ages, Liverpool will take the field with a full week of practice and preparation under its belt. On Saturday, the refreshed Reds visit the struggling Bolton Wanderers in Premier League action.

The Reds are looking to put last week's disappointing home draw behind them when they face 19th place Bolton. Manager Owen Coyle's bunch won Tuesday's FA Cup third-round replay over Macclesfield Town, but face LFC with just three days' rest.

Coyle must also deal with the loss of star center back Gary Cahill, who joined Chelsea in a £7million ($10.8 million) transfer last weekend. But Kenny Dalglish will not allow LFC to take its opponent lightly.

"They've struggled a wee bit at home. Last season they were a wee bit more productive there, so we just hope that run continues," Dalglish said. "It's not going to be easy for us. They're fighting for their lives at the bottom of the league and we've got ambitions to try and move up the league, so it's going to be a difficult game."

Liverpool has some key players in line to return to action Saturday. Daniel Agger is back in training and could start after missing last week's game. Steve Gerrard is working his way toward full fitness and Jay Spearing could return from a hamstring strain. Dalglish could also restore Craig Bellamy to the starting 11, giving LFC a speedy threat.

Join us at 12:30 p.m. for our Liverpool Live Blog. We'll have all the action right here.

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