England - 18th day: Belhadj scores against Liverpool
PORTSMOUTH - Liverpool, which has recorded its seventh defeat of the season Saturday with its move to the red lantern, Portsmouth (2-0), sank into crisis in the first game of the 18th day of the Championship of England.
- "You'll get the sack in the morning, in the morning", sang the Pompey fans at the coach Rafael Benitez after the opening score (33) by the Franco-Algerian Nadir Belhadj for a splendid volley from the right, in an impossible angle.
On a beautiful right shoot, Frederic Piquionne killed any suspense (82, 2-0).
To make matters worse, Javier Mascherano has been ruled out just before the break for a violent tackle on Israeli defender Tal Ben Haim (44). Already ruled out this season, the Argentinian midfielder will be automatically suspended four games. He’ll miss the reception of Wolverhampton and Tottenham as well as the travel to Aston Villa and Stoke.
Depending on other results of the day, Liverpool could enter the holiday season in 8th place ranking, well away from qualifying places for the Champions League.
The goal of Belhadj was the 500th scored this season, the most prolific since the establishment of the Premier League in the early 1990s.
Portsmouth, last from the 2nd day may instead begin to believe in survival, with significant improvement.
Ennaharonline/ M. O.