Liverpool Live Blog: Reds Controversially Fall at Final Hurdle, Chelsea Lifts FA Cup With 2-1 Win

Liverpool Live Blog: Reds Controversially Fall at Final Hurdle, Chelsea Lifts FA Cup With 2-1 WinFinal, 2-1 Chelsea: It's all over. Chelsea has won the FA Cup for the fourth time in six years by virtue of a 2-1 win over Liverpool.

All the talk will center around Carroll's goal that wasn't. Did it cross the line? Replays were inconclusive, but the only person whose opinion counts thinks it did not.

That cannot overshadow the contribution LFC's record signing made to the game. The Reds were lost for 55 minutes, but Carroll came on and gave them more than a goal. He unsettled Chelsea's defense and gave the Reds a genuine shot at winning.

Chelsea was the better team for much of the game, and the two goals it scored were a reflection of its advantage in composure and efficiency.

Blues' defender Cole becomes the first player to win the FA Cup seven times. Di Matteo's triumph means an Italian manager has won the cup three straight years.

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

94th minute, 2-1 Chelsea: Gerrard fouls Drogba and gives Chelsea a free kick. 

LFC could be out of time, but the referee might tack on another minute of stoppage time.

91st minute, 2-1 Chelsea: Carroll has a good look at the goal, but he scuffed his shot from close range.

Many thought he was offside, but he wasn't.

90th minute, 2-1 Chelsea: Mata is heading for the bench, and Malouda is taking his place.

We'll have five minutes of stoppage time. That leaves plenty of time for the rampant Reds to tie the game … but not too much.

89th minute, 2-1 Chelsea: LFC is piling on the pressure, having won a free kick and a succession of corner kicks.

But Chelsea is desperately defending the lead. 

86th minute, 2-1 Chelsea: It will be the talking point of this game. Did the ball cross the line or did it not?

Suarez thinks so. He was so sure about, he told the referee's assistant how wrong he was to not award LFC the goal, and got himself booked.

82nd minute, 2-1 Chelsea: LFC has just been robbed of the equalizer.

Suarez found Carroll at the far post with a delightful chip. Carroll headed it on goal, and Cech batted it off the bar.

It's inconclusive whether the entire ball crossed the line, but Carroll celebrated anyway.

The referee's assistant ruled that it was not a goal.

78th minute, 2-1 Chelsea: Now Kuyt is coming on for Bellamy.

The Welshman didn't make much of an impact in this game.

Kuyt's experience and pluck could serve the Reds well at this stage of the game.

77th minute, 2-1 Chelsea: Meireles enters the game for Ramires.

Now Drogba is down on the field. He's holding his groin, and it looks like he's injured.

76th minute, 2-1 Chelsea: Carroll's had two headers in the last two minutes that have missed the target. But he is certainly making his presence felt in the second half.

73rd minute, 2-1 Chelsea: Carroll's introduction has liberated Suarez, allowing him to pop up all over the field and trouble the Chelsea defense.

This time, he shoots from distance and draws a save from Cech.

71st minute, 2-1 Chelsea: The Reds have Chelsea on the ropes. They are first to 50-50 balls, and are passing it around with purpose.

68th minute, 2-1 Chelsea: Bosingwa was lackadaisical in possession, which allowed Downing to close him down and win the ball.

Carroll's goal was a piece of individual skill that should disprove the theory that he can't play with the ball on the ground. He needs service to his head and to his feet.

64th minute, 2-1 Chelsea: But it's Carroll who gets LFC on the board.

Downing won a tackle to the left of the area and found Carroll in the box.

The LFC striker twisted and turned Terry, before powering his shot with his left foot past Cech.

63rd minute, 2-0 Chelsea: Despite holding a two-goal lead, Chelsea looks like the team that is most likely to score next.

LFC is pushing its defensive line high up the field, and Chelsea is looking to hit the Reds on the counter.

55th minute, 2-0 Chelsea: Spearing is leaving the game, and Carroll has come on in his place.

The big LFC striker will have most of the second half to make a positive impact on this game.

But it is up to Suarez, Bellamy, Gerrard and Downing to provide service either to his head or his feet.

54th minute, 2-0 Chelsea: The game has opened up, and there are chances at both ends.

Suarez burst into the area and shot, but Cech turned it away.

52nd minute, 2-0 Chelsea: Drogba doubles Chelsea's lead with a punishing goal.

Lampard created the opportunity by tricking his way past Spearing in the midfield and passing forward to the Ivorian.

Drogba was able to face up to Skrtel (who was dropping off when he should have closed him down) and bury his shot inside of the far post. He always seems to score at Wembley Stadium. It's his fourth goal in a FA Cup Final, and his eighth in nine games at Wembley.

51st minute, 1-0 Chelsea: The LFC captain Gerrard drives forward and carries play into the Chelsea area.

He was taken down in the box, but he had already lost control of the ball. Penalty appeals were rightfully turned down.

49th minute, 1-0 Chelsea: Neither team made any changes during the break, but Carroll is already warming up.

Liverpool might bring him on as a "Plan B," as "Plan A" didn't work in the first half.

Halftime, 1-0 Chelsea: The first half comes to a close, and the Reds trail by a goal.

In their 13 previous FA Cup finals, the Reds only scored first half goals on two occasions.

This game was true to form. LFC never really looked like scoring or even threatening the Chelsea goal.

Downing and Enrique have struggled on the left, there is a lack of creativity in the midfield and Suarez is an island unto himself up top. Dalglish will have to consider making a few tactical changes at halftime.

45th minute, 1-0 Chelsea: Agger makes a mistimed challenge on Mikel, and the LFC defender goes into the referee's book.

41st minute, 1-0 Chelsea: LFC has picked up its play over the last few minutes, and it nearly scores from the head of Suarez.

Henderson popped into the box and headed to Suarez at the spot, but it seemed to bounce off the Uruguayan's head, and he never had a chance to aim his header.

38th minute, 1-0 Chelsea: Mikel is booked for a rough tackle on Gerrard.

36th minute, 1-0 Chelsea: LFC is really struggling right now. When it ventures into the Chelsea half, the Blues have done well to close down the spaces and make it difficult to create chances.

Suarez has been absent for most of the first half, as there is little space between the midfield and defensive lines. The Uruguayan needs another player to be the focal point of the LFC attack, Carroll perhaps, in order to take some of the attention off of him.

28th minute, 1-0 Chelsea: The onus is on Downing and Bellamy to impose themselves on this game.

Chelsea's back four is solid and sits deep. The LFC wide men must get behind their midfield opponents and carry it deep — to the byline if possible.

That stretches the defense and allows Gerrard, Henderson and even Spearing to make darting runs into the box.

24th minute, 1-0 Chelsea: Kalou makes a slalom run into the box, but Agger intervenes at the last moment.

The born-again Blues forward beat two or three opponents, and looked like he would have a free shot at Reina's goal. But the big Dane stepped in and ended his run.

18th minute, 1-0 Chelsea: The early goal plays into Chelsea's hands. It forces LFC to take more risks going forward, and leaves space at the back for the Blues to exploit.

Those quick, deadly counter-attacks have served Chelsea so well over the years. And when LFC gets men behind the ball, the Blues are content to pass it around in the midfield and build play slowly.

14th minute, 1-0 Chelsea: LFC pushes play into the Chelsea area and threaten Cech's goal.

Spearing's drive was blocked by Ivanovic before it reached the Chelsea goalkeeper.

11th minute, 1-0 Chelsea: Just like that, Ramires bombs forward and gives Chelsea the lead.

Mata took the ball in his own half, turned and passed forward to Ramires. 

The Brazilian midfielder beat Enrique, who took a bad position on the pass, with speed. 

He carried play into the area and shot through Reina's legs for the opener.

10th minute, 0-0: Ten of the dullest minutes in soccer history are in the books. It can only get better from here.

Nerves are one thing, but one of these teams must show a bit of adventure.

Seventh minute, 0-0: Now its Liverpool that is controlling most of the play, but the Reds haven't been able to take it into the Chelsea third of the field.

It's a slow beginning for both teams, as caution and patience have been the dominant themes.

Third minute, 0-0: Chelsea has the better of possession in the early minutes, but it has not amounted to much.

Pregame: The starting 11 is as strong as it gets for LFC. The back four that served the Reds so well over the course of the season is together with Spearing providing the midfield shield.

Henderson and Gerrard will look to control things from the center. Those two and Spearing will be tasked with tracking the forward runs of Lampard and Ramires.

Downing, Bellamy and Suarez will be the roaming focal points of the LFC attack. Carroll has been omitted from the starting 11, but he can make an impact as a substitute.

There's little surprise in the Chelsea 11. David Luiz and Gary Cahill have hamstring injuries, so Ivanovic slots into the middle to partner Terry. He has been a key figure in Chelsea's revival. The game's result could hinge on how he handles Bellamy's pace and Suarez's guile.

Mata and Kalou will start just underneath the menace that is Drogba. They'll likely tuck inside, allowing Cole and Bosingwa to get forward. As for Torres … he's on the bench.

11:30 a.m.: Here are the lineups:

Liverpool FC

Pepe Reina (25), goalkeeper
Glen Johnson (2), right back
Martin Skrtel (37), center back
Daniel Agger (5), center back
Jose Enrique (3), left back
Jay Spearing (20), midfielder
Jordan Henderson (14), midfielder
Steve Gerrard (8), midfielder 
Stewart Downing (19), midfielder
Craig Bellamy (39), forward
Luis Suarez (7), forward


 Alexander Doni (32), goalkeeper
Martin Kelly (34), defender
Jamie Carragher (23), defender
Jonjo Shelvey (33), midfielder
Dirk Kuyt (18), forward
Maxi (11), forward
Andy Carroll (9), striker

Chelsea FC

Petr Cech (1), goalkeeper
Jose Bosingwa (17), right back
Branislav Ivanovic (2), center back
John Terry (26), center back
Ashley Cole (3), left back
John Obi Mikel (12), midfielder
Frank Lampard (8), midfielder
Ramires (7), midfielder
Juan Mata (10), forward
Salomon Kalou (21), forward
Didier Drogba (11), striker


Ross Turnbull (22), goalkeeper
Paulo Ferreira (19), defender
Michael Essien (5), midfielder
Raul Meireles (16), midfielder
Florent Malouda (15), midfielder
Daniel Sturridge (23), forward
Fernando Torres (9), striker

12 a.m. ET: Liverpool FC stands on the brink of English soccer's first cup double in five years. But formidable Chelsea FC is standing in the way. The two clubs meet at Wembley Stadium with the right to hoist the FA Cup on the line.

Chelsea and LFC have had some memorable encounters over the years. So it is fitting that these rivals face off in the FA Cup final. Both clubs have endured disappointing Premier League campaigns, and are looking to ease the sting with a prestigious trophy. The teams are evenly matched, so the outcome will hinge on the smallest of details on the field of play.

In the last two months, Chelsea has undergone a renaissance under Roberto di Matteo. The interim boss has restored confidence and belief within the squad, and the Blues could win two trophies when all is said and done. Players and fans are backing the Italian to assume the job on a full-time basis. Nothing can help his cause more than a Wembley win.

LFC is making its third trip to "Anfield South" this season. The first two — the Carling Cup final and FA Cup semifinal — were delightful occasions. A win on Saturday will be the most joyous of them all.

Kenny Dalglish has given each of his players a chance to impress ahead of the big game, and he will likely field his strongest 11. All eyes will be on the LFC's iconic trio of Luis Suarez, Steve Gerrard and Andy Carroll. When the three click in the opponents' third of the field, good things tend to happen.

Join us for our coverage of LFC-Chelsea. We'll have all the action right here starting at 11:45 a.m.

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

TMZ logo

© 2019 NESN

NESN Shows

Partner of USATODAY Sports Digital Properties