Google+ PLANET FOOT 7: Chicharito scores and leads Manchester to pass Liverpool in the English League Cup.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Chicharito scores and leads Manchester to pass Liverpool in the English League Cup.

A strike from Javier Hernandez early in the second-half gave David Moyes a much-need victory against Liverpool. The Mexican netted from close-range after a corner from Wayne Rooney to defeat a Liverpool side with Luis Suarez making his comeback from suspension.
Manchester United ruined Luis Suarez's long-awaited return from a 10-match ban for biting by beating Liverpool 1-0 in the third round of the League Cup on Wednesday, relieving some early-season pressure on manager David Moyes.

Suarez came closest to equalizing for Liverpool, curling a free kick against the crossbar as he hogged the limelight on his return to club football five months after biting Chelsea defender Branislav Ivanovic in a Premier League game.

"I thought he was excellent, considering he'd been out for such a long time,'' Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers said. "He ran himself into the ground. As he goes upon, he will profit sharper.''

Swansea's defense of the trophy ended in abject fashion by losing 3-1 at second-tier Birmingham, while there were wins for Premier League teams Newcastle and Stoke. Arsenal was playing extra time against West Bromwich Albion after the match ended 1-1 after 90 minutes.

It was a big result for Moyes, who had come under blaze after presiding over United's worst begin to a league campaign in nine years in his first season in charge after taking over from Alex Ferguson. Only three days ago, the champions had been thrashed 4-1 by neighbor Manchester City.

"I think what was important (was) that the whole club showed we were harm by the game upon Sunday, and the players have gone out and done a good job,'' Moyes said.

"I've said I will repair it and turn it around, and I will do.''

With no European football this season, Liverpool is left with just two trophies to play for and will rue that its full-strength lineup missed a great chance to beat United for a second time this season, having already won 1-0 in the league upon Sept. 1.

The match was notable for the comeback of Suarez, who played a World Cup qualifier for Uruguay as recently as two weeks ago but hadn't worn a Liverpool shirt for a competitive match since April 21 - when he sunk his teeth into Ivanovic's upper arm.

In those five months, his relationship with the club had been severely tested after he accused Liverpool's hierarchy of breaking an agreement to sell him if it failed to qualify for the Champions League. Liverpool turned down two bids from Arsenal for Suarez over the summer.

He was still well-received by Liverpool's travelling support at Old Trafford, although his reception from the house fans was typically hostile having been banned for eight matches in 2011 for repeatedly racially abusing United defender Patrice Evra during a league match.

With Liverpool changing formation to a 3-5-2, he played up front with Daniel Sturridge, with the pair initially posing problems upon the counter-attack. Suarez miscontrolled when he could have run through upon goal and Sturridge toe-poked wide after getting half a yard upon his marker.

United was poor in possession in the first half but when Jose Enrique lost Hernandez at a corner soon after the crack, the Mexico striker leapt to lead house an impudent volley from inside the six-yard crate, provoking an air-punching celebration from Moyes.

Suarez shot into the side netting in the 70th, then sent a free kick crashing against the bar two minutes later as United held off a mighty finish by Liverpool, a record eight-time winner of the competition.

"It was a massive turnaround (from the weekend), especially with players who haven't played a lot of games this season,'' United defender Chris Smalling said. "There was a lot of doubt after the weekend so we had to go out and get a performance and we did.''

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