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Page last updated at 18:52 GMT, Thursday, 21 October 2010 19:52 UK

Napoli   0 - 0   Liverpool

Ryan Babel has a chance saved for Liverpool against Napoli
Babel failed to take a gilt-edged chance for Liverpool

By Mandeep Sanghera

A second-string Liverpool side produced a defiant display as they earned an admirable draw at Napoli in their Europa League Group K tie.

The Reds survived as a Marek Hamsik shot was cleared off the line by Paul Konchesky but they had chances to win.

Ryan Babel spurned a glorious opening for the visitors when his strike was saved with only the keeper to beat.

David Ngog swivelled and had a shot blocked by Napoli's Salvatore Aronica as both teams had to settle for a draw.

The result will be a welcome glimmer of hope for under-pressure Reds manager Roy Hodgson, who used the breathing space of his team being top of their group ahead of the game to field a team mostly of youngsters and fringe players.

And, although the Merseysiders have now gone seven games without a win, Liverpool's supporting cast gave a disciplined and determined showing.

606: DEBATE
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Jonjo Shelvey was making his full Reds debut as he filled the Steven Gerrard role behind main striker Ngog and he, along with fellow youngsters Martin Kelly and Jay Spearing, admirably dealt with the intimidating atmosphere at the Stadio San Paolo.

Right-back Kelly was an enterprising presence as he combined his defensive duties with an energy to get forward when possible, while the diminutive Spearing cut an assured presence in central midfield.

In attack, the Reds had a brief sight of goal early on when Milan Jovanovic slid a piercing ball to Babel only for the Dutchman's touch to let him down and the chance of a shot at goal quickly evaporated.

Babel was making a rare start but, rather than grasping the chance to further his first-team claims, he disappointed as he gave away possession too many times.

Ngog had the arduous task of leading the Liverpool line almost single-handedly and, while he worked tirelessly, he failed to make the most of a rare chance which came his way.

Shelvey drifted a cross to the far post which Ngog could only steer harmlessly across the Napoli box rather that at goal.

Napoli are fourth in the Serie A but, even with a mostly first-team line-up, were struggling to find a way through their under-strength opponents.

That was the case until the stroke of half-time when they almost undid the visitors' good work.

Edison Cavani outpaced Carragher and crossed for Hamsik, who turned in a shot at goal which was cleared from the Reds goalmouth by Konchesky and the official behind the goal ruled the ball had not crossed the goal-line.

Napoli's threat grew after the break and Cavani had the sting taken out of a shot by Konchesky before Reina saved and the Uruguayan striker then flashed a powerful header just wide.

Liverpool quelled the growing Napoli tide as the game opened up and Babel had a great opportunity after again being played in by Jovanovic but had his side-footed attempt saved by the foot of keeper Morgan De Sanctis.

Hodgson's side were showing signs they may steal a win and when Ngog controlled, swivelled and shot, but Napoli defender Aronica had to launch himself to block the strike as the honours finished even and Liverpool stayed top of the group.

Live text and stats

 

Thursday, 21 October 2010

Europa League

Home Team Score Away Team Time
Napoli 0-0 Liverpool FT
(HT 0-0)

      Napoli

      • 26 De Sanctis
      • 06 Aronica
      • 08 Dossena
      • 14 Campagnaro
      • 28 Cannavaro
      • 05 Pazienza yellow card
      • 11 Maggio (Zuniga 75)
      • 17 Hamsik (Sosa 85)
      • 23 Gargano (Yebda 83)
      • 07 Cavani
      • 22 Lavezzi

      Substitutes

      • 01 Iezzo,
      • 02 Grava,
      • 18 Zuniga,
      • 25 Cribari,
      • 21 Yebda,
      • 77 Sosa,
      • 12 Dumitru

      Liverpool

      Substitutes

      Ref: KinhoferAtt: 55,489
      NAPOLI
      LIVERPOOL

      Possession

      • Napoli 51%
      • Liverpool 49%

      Attempts on target

      • Napoli 3
      • Liverpool 5

      Attempts off target

      • Napoli 4
      • Liverpool 1

      Corners

      • Napoli 6
      • Liverpool 2

      Fouls

      • Napoli 6
      • Liverpool 8
      • Final Result
      • Full Time
      • 90:00+2:12 The referee blows his whistle to end the game.
      • 90:00+1:37 Shot from just outside the area by Ezequiel Lavezzi misses to the right of the target.
      • 90:00+1:07 The ball is delivered by Jose Sosa, clearance by Martin Skrtel.
      • 90:00+0:58 Jose Sosa delivers the ball, clearance made by Martin Skrtel.
      • 90:00+0:39 Centre by Andrea Dossena.
      • 89:10 Edinson Cavani sends in a cross.
      • 85:44 Jonjo Shelvey crosses the ball, blocked by Hassan Yebda.
      • 84:26 Substitution Jose Sosa replaces Marek Hamsik.
      • 82:29 Substitution Hassan Yebda on for Walter Gargano.
      • 80:26 The ball is swung over by Milan Jovanovic, David Ngog has an effort at goal from 12 yards. Salvatore Aronica gets a block in. Outswinging corner taken right-footed by Jonjo Shelvey from the right by-line.
      • 78:49 The ball is crossed by Andrea Dossena, save made by Jose Reina.
      • 78:18 The referee blows for offside against Jonjo Shelvey. Morgan De Sanctis takes the free kick.
      • 77:19 Joe Cole delivers the ball, Morgan De Sanctis makes a save.
      • 76:08 Substitution Joe Cole comes on in place of Ryan Babel.
      • 75:53 Ezequiel Lavezzi produces a cross.
      • 74:57 Substitution Camilo Zuniga comes on in place of Cristian Maggio.
      • 74:10 Unfair challenge on Ryan Babel by Salvatore Aronica results in a free kick. Martin Kelly takes the direct free kick.
      • 73:57 Ezequiel Lavezzi sends in a cross, Jose Reina makes a save.
      • 73:17 Jonjo Shelvey delivers the ball, save by Morgan De Sanctis.
      • 72:47 Handball decision goes against Edinson Cavani. Jose Reina restarts play with the free kick.
      • 72:35 Shot by Ezequiel Lavezzi from 12 yards. Blocked by Martin Skrtel.
      • 71:07 Corner taken right-footed by Jonjo Shelvey from the left by-line, save by Morgan De Sanctis. David Ngog gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Morgan De Sanctis. Morgan De Sanctis restarts play with the free kick.
      • 69:49 Edinson Cavani is flagged offside by the assistant referee. Free kick taken by Jose Reina.
      • 68:40 Ryan Babel takes a shot. Save by Morgan De Sanctis.
      • 67:24 A cross is delivered by Andrea Dossena, clearance made by Martin Skrtel. Outswinging corner taken right-footed by Cristian Maggio from the left by-line.
      • 66:48 Outswinging corner taken right-footed by Cristian Maggio, clearance by Christian Poulsen.
      • 65:49 Ryan Babel concedes a free kick for a foul on Andrea Dossena. Andrea Dossena restarts play with the free kick.
      • 65:29 Martin Kelly sends in a cross, David Ngog takes a shot. Save made by Morgan De Sanctis.
      • 64:10 Substitution Fabio Aurelio replaces Paul Konchesky.
      • 63:58 Walter Gargano delivers the ball.
      • 63:48 The ball is swung over by Cristian Maggio.
      • 62:44 Cristian Maggio delivers the ball, clearance by Martin Skrtel.
      • 60:36 The ball is crossed by Paul Konchesky, Hugo Armando Campagnaro manages to make a clearance.
      • 59:42 Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Walter Gargano by Christian Poulsen. Free kick taken by Michele Pazienza.
      • 59:02 The ball is crossed by Cristian Maggio, Headed effort on goal by Edinson Cavani from inside the penalty box misses to the right of the goal.
      • 58:24 Shot by Milan Jovanovic from just outside the area goes over the net.
      • 57:27 A cross is delivered by Martin Kelly, Morgan De Sanctis makes a save.
      • 56:03 Foul by Michele Pazienza on Jay Spearing, free kick awarded. Paul Konchesky takes the direct free kick.
      • 56:03 Booking Caution for Michele Pazienza.
      • 55:03 The referee blows for offside. Morgan De Sanctis restarts play with the free kick.
      • 53:43 Edinson Cavani takes a shot. Save by Jose Reina.
      • 51:05 Paul Konchesky fouled by Walter Gargano, the ref awards a free kick. Free kick taken by Jose Reina.
      • 50:38 The ball is sent over by Andrea Dossena, blocked by Martin Kelly. Short corner taken by Cristian Maggio from the left by-line.
      • 46:45 Centre by Marek Hamsik, clearance by Martin Skrtel.
      • 45:01 The game restarts for the second half.
      • 45:01 Substitution Jamie Carragher leaves the field to be replaced by Sotirios Kyrgiakos.
      • Half Time
      • 45:00+1:17 The referee blows for half time.
      • 45:00 The ball is swung over by Hugo Armando Campagnaro, blocked by Paul Konchesky. Cristian Maggio takes a outswinging corner. Marek Hamsik takes a shot. Clearance made by Paul Konchesky.
      • 44:37 Ryan Babel crosses the ball, Salvatore Aronica makes a clearance.
      • 44:02 Drilled left-footed shot by Paul Konchesky. Michele Pazienza gets a block in.
      • 43:39 The referee gives a free kick against Michele Pazienza for handball. Jonjo Shelvey takes the direct free kick.
      • 42:43 David Ngog is ruled offside. Morgan De Sanctis takes the indirect free kick.
      • 40:43 The assistant referee signals for offside against David Ngog. Morgan De Sanctis restarts play with the free kick.
      • 40:31 The ball is crossed by Jonjo Shelvey, save by Morgan De Sanctis.
      • 38:24 Centre by Milan Jovanovic.
      • 37:13 The ball is crossed by Andrea Dossena.
      • 33:55 The ball is crossed by Ryan Babel, Paolo Cannavaro manages to make a clearance.
      • 33:27 The ball is sent over by Ryan Babel, Paolo Cannavaro manages to make a clearance.
      • 32:10 Drilled left-footed shot by Jonjo Shelvey. Save made by Morgan De Sanctis.
      • Correction - 29:50 A cross is delivered by Ezequiel Lavezzi.
      • 29:50 The ball is delivered by Ezequiel Lavezzi.
      • 28:54 Free kick awarded for a foul by Ezequiel Lavezzi on David Ngog. Jose Reina takes the direct free kick.
      • 27:52 Martin Skrtel gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Ezequiel Lavezzi. The free kick is swung in right-footed by Ezequiel Lavezzi, Milan Jovanovic makes a clearance.
      • 27:52 Booking Martin Skrtel goes into the referee's book for unsporting behaviour.
      • 27:05 Paul Konchesky crosses the ball, clearance made by Salvatore Aronica.
      • 26:10 Edinson Cavani produces a right-footed shot from long range that goes over the bar.
      • 25:15 Corner taken right-footed by Cristian Maggio from the right by-line, clearance made by Jonjo Shelvey.
      • 24:25 Walter Gargano fouled by Martin Kelly, the ref awards a free kick. Free kick taken by Ezequiel Lavezzi.
      • 23:23 Foul by Jamie Carragher on Ezequiel Lavezzi, free kick awarded. Michele Pazienza takes the free kick.
      • 20:25 David Ngog fouled by Michele Pazienza, the ref awards a free kick. Jonjo Shelvey crosses the ball from the free kick right-footed from left channel. The offside flag is raised against Martin Skrtel. Morgan De Sanctis restarts play with the free kick.
      • Correction - 19:13 Hugo Armando Campagnaro challenges David Ngog unfairly and gives away a free kick. Jonjo Shelvey crosses the ball from the free kick right-footed from left channel.
      • 19:13 Hugo Armando Campagnaro gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on David Ngog. Jonjo Shelvey crosses the ball from the free kick right-footed from left channel.
      • 18:45 Effort on goal by Ezequiel Lavezzi from outside the area goes harmlessly over the bar.
      • 16:49 A cross is delivered by Andrea Dossena, clearance made by Paul Konchesky. Corner taken by Cristian Maggio.
      • 15:33 Christian Poulsen gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Marek Hamsik. Hugo Armando Campagnaro takes the free kick.
      • 10:31 Foul by Paul Konchesky on Cristian Maggio, free kick awarded. Hugo Armando Campagnaro takes the free kick.
      • 6:02 Ezequiel Lavezzi sends in a cross, clearance by Martin Skrtel.
      • 1:41 Martin Kelly produces a cross, save made by Morgan De Sanctis.
      • 0:00 The referee gets the game underway.

      Live text and data provided by The Press Association.



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      Europa League results

      21 Oct 2010 23:59 UK

      • Anderlecht3-0AEK Athens
        FT
      • Aris Salonika0-0Bayer Leverkusen
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      • Atletico Madrid3-0Rosenborg
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      • AZ Alkmaar1-2Dynamo Kiev
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      • Besiktas1-3FC Porto
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      • Borussia Dortmund1-1Paris SG
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      • CSKA Sofia0-2Rapid Vienna
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      • Debrecen1-2PSV Eindhoven
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      • Dinamo Zagreb0-0Club Bruges
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      • FC Metalist Kharkiv 2-1Sampdoria
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      • FC Sheriff Tiraspol0-1BATE Borisov
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      • FC Utrecht1-1Steaua Bucharest
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      • Karpaty Lviv0-1Sevilla
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      • Lille1-0Levski Sofia
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      • Man City3-1Lech PoznanFT
      • Napoli0-0LiverpoolFT
      • Palermo0-3CSKA Moscow
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      • SV Salzburg1-1Juventus
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      • Sparta Prague3-3Lausanne Sports
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      • Sporting5-1AA Gent
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      • VfB Stuttgart1-0Getafe
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      • Villarreal1-0PAOK Salonika
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      • Young Boys4-2Odense BK
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      • Zenit St P'sbg2-0Hajduk Split
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      see also
      Hodgson insists he will not quit
      21 Oct 10 |  Liverpool
      Thursday's football photos
      21 Oct 10 |  Football
      Purslow quits position at Anfield
      20 Oct 10 |  Liverpool
      Maiden star flies LFC to Naples
      20 Oct 10 |  Liverpool
      Everton 2-0 Liverpool
      17 Oct 10 |  Premier League
      Torres lacks confidence - Hodgson
      17 Oct 10 |  Liverpool


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