Join Now | 
HomeAboutContact UsPrivacy & SecurityAdvertise
Soccer America DailySoccer World DailySpecial EditionAround The NetSoccer Business InsiderCollege Soccer ReporterYouth Soccer ReporterSoccer on TVSoccer America ClassifiedsGame Report
Paul Gardner: SoccerTalkSoccer America ConfidentialYouth Soccer InsiderWorld Cup Watch
RSS FeedsArchivesManage SubscriptionsSubscribe
Order Current IssueSubscribeManage My SubscriptionRenew My SubscriptionGift Subscription
My AccountJoin Now
Tournament CalendarCamps & AcademiesSoccer GlossaryClassifieds
Liverpool claims lead into New Year
December 29th, 2008 7AM



Liverpool was the big winner during the English Premier League's abbreviated holiday program, defeating Bolton Wanderers, 3-0, and Newcastle, 5-1, to open up a three-point lead over Chelsea at the top of the standings.

Steven Gerrard scored twice, and Sami Hyypia, Ryan Babel and Xabi Alonso added goals for Liverpool, which has not won a league title since the EPL was formed in 1992. Robbie Keane scored twice, and Albert Riera had the third goal against Bolton.

Assistant Sammy Lee has been standing in for manager Rafael Benitez, who is recovering from his recent bout with kidney stones,

"We have said you win nothing in December," said Lee, "but you can certainly lose a lot. All you can do is be in a position at any given time. We're very, very pleased to be going into the New Year at the top and that's all you can be."

Liverpool leads the EPL standings with 45 points, three more than Chelsea, followed by Manchester United, Aston Villa and Arsenal, all with 35 points. (United has three games in hand on Liverpool and meets Middlesbrough on Monday. Villa travels to Hull on Tuesday.)

Chelsea dropped three points behind the Reds when American Clint Dempsey's late equalizer, his second goal of the game, gave Fulham a 2-2 tie with the visiting Blues.

"We lost two points today," Chelsea manager Luiz Felipe Scolari said. "We made two mistakes with our marking and conceded two goals. I think they had one more chance -- we had 10 chances and scored two goals."

An epic relegation battle could be in order as five points separate teams in the bottom half of the EPL standings:

11. Bolton 23 (-6)
12. Portsmouth 23 (-12)
13. Manchester City 22 (+8)
14. Newcastle 22 (-6)
15. Sunderland 22 (-8)
16. Tottenham 20 (-5)
17. Middlesbrough 20 (-11)
18. Stoke 20 (-15)
19. Blackburn 18 (-14)
20. West Bromwich 18 (-19)

(Note: All have played 20 games except Middlesbrough, which has played 19.)

No comments yet.

Sign in to leave a comment. Don't have an account? Join Now



Recent Soccer America Daily
What They're Saying: Michael Bradley    
"Certainly when you talk about the United States in a bigger way, one of the beautiful ...
Video Pick: Brazilian mascot loses his head     
O Vovo ("Grandpa"), the mascot of Brazilian second division club Ceara, apparently doesn't get that his ...
What They're Saying: Landon Donovan    
"Jurgen said many times he wants our players to feel pressure. ... Well, the same holds ...
What They're Saying: Roy Keane     
"Yes, why wouldn't he be? He didn’t have the baby. Unless he's breastfeeding he should be ...
MLS Power Rankings: Red Bulls stay on top    
Three weeks to go in the MLS season and only four teams have clinched playoff spots. ...
What They're Saying: Chung Mong Joon    
"The true danger is that they are not only sabotaging my candidacy. They are sabotaging FIFA's ...
Thorns confirm Parsons as coach for 2016 NWSL season    
The Portland Timbers have hired 29-year-old Mark Parsons as their new head coach less than a ...
What They're Saying: Jozy Altidore    
"Just personal issues, and when things aren't right there, it makes it tough to go to ...
NASL: Ottawa accomplishes Mission 1    
Ottawa Fury FC clinched its first-ever NASL postseason berth with a 2-0 win over FC Edmonton ...
TV Report: MLS expands into Latin America    
MLS has reached an agreement with Fox Sports Latin America to televise live league matches in ...
>> Soccer America Daily Archives