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Page last updated at 21:57 GMT, Wednesday, 15 December 2010

Liverpool   0 - 0   FC Utrecht

Milan Jovanovic (left) struck the crossbar with a Liverpool shot against FC Utrecht
Jovanovic (left) came close to scoring in a rare chance at Anfield

By Mandeep Sanghera

A shadow Liverpool side went through the motions of a final Europa League group game as they played out a dull draw against FC Utrecht.

With the Reds through to the last 32 and the Dutch side unable to qualify, both sides lacked urgency and desire.

Milan Jovanovic came closest to breaking the deadlock when his rasping 30-yard strike rattled the crossbar.

Joe Cole also had a late chance for the home side only to have a close range strike blocked.

Cole also failed to get a touch to a Fabio Aurelio cross in the closing minutes as he tried to divert a shot goalwards at the near post before the end of a display that will do little to encourage Liverpool fans.

Reds manager Roy Hodgson revealed he had been persuaded to see sense by the club's medical staff and not start star striker Fernando Torres, while the stronger looking line-up that he hinted he might field also failed to materialise.

606: DEBATE
Bring back Batigol

How seriously the Anfield boss considered such a move is debatable considering the meaningless nature of the game weighed against the potential risks of such a ploy.

Instead, the second string team Hodgson has regularly sent out in the competition was again called upon and, despite the notions of being able to press their claims for first-team action, the Reds players failed to stir themselves in a game they could have approached with a relative degree of freedom.

The only worthwhile chance to mention in the first half was a surging run from Jovanovic which ended with the Serbian having a well-struck long range strike touched on to the crossbar by keeper Michel Vorm.

In a disjointed game devoid of ideas, Reds playmaker Cole failed to make his presence felt in his search for form and fitness following his recent return from a hamstring injury.

Nathan Eccleston, 19, was making his first start for Liverpool but, despite his energy, the promising striker had little chance of making an impact because of the lack of creativity the home side were displaying against a visiting side showing equally little ambition.

Utrecht's players had been told to enjoy playing at Anfield in their Europa League swansong but they were dealt a blow when their top scorer Ricky van Wolfswinkel fell awkwardly and was stretchered off with a broken collarbone.

The injury is likely to have ended any hopes the striker, who has 19 goals so far this season and was linked with several top-flight clubs in the summer, may have had of moving to the Premier League during the January transfer window.

Ryan Babel flashed a shot wide across goal in some rare action before one of the loudest cheers of the night came when former Utrecht player Dirk Kuyt came on as a substitute.

Cole's late chance at the far post gave brief hope of a goal but that disappeared when his shot was blocked before the final whistle quickly moved thoughts on to the draw for the next stage on Friday.

Live text and stats

 

Wednesday, 15 December 2010

Europa League

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

      Liverpool

      Substitutes

      FC Utrecht

      • 01 Vorm
      • 02 Cornelisse
      • 03 Nesu
      • 22 Keller
      • 08 Silberbauer
      • 11 Mertens
      • 18 Maguire (Adam Sarota 84)
      • 27 Nijholt
      • 29 Wuytens
      • 07 Duplan (Oar 71)
      • 09 van Wolfswinkel (de Kogel 45+1)

      Substitutes

      • 31 Cummings,
      • 25 Vorstermams,
      • 14 Van der Maarel,
      • 30 Adam Sarota,
      • 10 Oar,
      • 47 de Kogel
      Ref: JakobssonAtt: 37,800
      LIVERPOOL
      FC UTRECHT

      Possession

      • Liverpool 44%
      • FC Utrecht 56%

      Attempts on target

      • Liverpool 6
      • FC Utrecht 4

      Attempts off target

      • Liverpool 3
      • FC Utrecht 3

      Corners

      • Liverpool 3
      • FC Utrecht 5

      Fouls

      • Liverpool 11
      • FC Utrecht 6
      • Final Result
      • Full Time
      • 90:00+3:36 The match has reached full-time.
      • 90:00+3:03 Adam Sarota takes a shot. Save made by Brad Jones.
      • 90:00+2:18 A cross is delivered by Dries Mertens, clearance made by Danny Wilson.
      • 90:00+1:56 Corner taken by Dries Mertens from the left by-line played to the near post, clearance by Martin Kelly.
      • 89:21 Centre by Fabio Aurelio, Michel Vorm makes a save.
      • 88:27 Joe Cole takes a shot.
      • 87:34 Unfair challenge on Joe Cole by Jan Wuytens results in a free kick. Jonjo Shelvey takes the free kick.
      • 86:50 Michael Silberbauer has an effort at goal from long distance that misses to the right of the target.
      • 86:02 A cross is delivered by Dries Mertens, Sotirios Kyrgiakos makes a clearance.
      • 83:29 Substitution Adam Sarota is brought on as a substitute for Barry Maguire.
      • 82:28 Joe Cole takes a shot. Blocked by Sander Keller.
      • 82:18 The ball is delivered by Fabio Aurelio, Mihai Nesu makes a clearance.
      • 80:36 A cross is delivered by Tommy Oar, clearance by Fabio Aurelio.
      • 78:50 Tommy Oar produces a cross, Daniel Pacheco makes a clearance.
      • 78:05 Corner taken by Gianluca Nijholt from the right by-line played to the near post, clearance by Danny Wilson.
      • 77:38 The ball is delivered by Tommy Oar, Fabio Aurelio manages to make a clearance.
      • 76:54 Tommy Oar delivers the ball, Sotirios Kyrgiakos manages to make a clearance. Dries Mertens produces a right-footed shot from the edge of the box and misses to the left of the target.
      • 76:20 The ball is crossed by Martin Kelly, Michel Vorm makes a save.
      • 75:32 Unfair challenge on Leon de Kogel by Fabio Aurelio results in a free kick. Sander Keller takes the direct free kick.
      • 75:13 The ball is sent over by Joe Cole.
      • 73:59 Unfair challenge on Gianluca Nijholt by Jonjo Shelvey results in a free kick. Mihai Nesu takes the direct free kick.
      • 73:35 Fabio Aurelio takes a inswinging corner from the right by-line to the near post, clearance made by Jan Wuytens.
      • 72:51 Substitution Dirk Kuyt on for Milan Jovanovic.
      • 71:09 Centre by Tommy Oar.
      • 70:23 Substitution Tommy Oar on for Edouard Duplan.
      • 68:07 Martin Kelly delivers the ball.
      • 67:05 Gianluca Nijholt concedes a free kick for a foul on Daniel Pacheco. Sotirios Kyrgiakos restarts play with the free kick.
      • 66:02 Barry Maguire takes a inswinging corner from the left by-line to the near post, clearance made by Danny Wilson.
      • 64:03 Dries Mertens fouled by Christian Poulsen, the ref awards a free kick. Barry Maguire crosses the ball from the free kick right-footed from left wing, clearance by Danny Wilson.
      • 63:36 Joe Cole challenges Barry Maguire unfairly and gives away a free kick. Michael Silberbauer takes the free kick.
      • 61:38 Dries Mertens sends in a cross, Brad Jones makes a save.
      • 61:24 Daniel Pacheco takes a shot. Michel Vorm makes a comfortable save.
      • 60:36 Free kick awarded for a foul by Ryan Babel on Tim Cornelisse. Sander Keller takes the direct free kick.
      • 60:14 Leon de Kogel takes a shot. Brad Jones makes a comfortable save.
      • 59:08 Fabio Aurelio takes a shot. Blocked by Tim Cornelisse.
      • 57:22 Martin Kelly produces a cross.
      • 56:14 Christian Poulsen challenges Edouard Duplan unfairly and gives away a free kick. Sander Keller takes the free kick.
      • 56:06 A cross is delivered by Ryan Babel, Jan Wuytens makes a clearance.
      • 55:31 Substitution Daniel Pacheco joins the action as a substitute, replacing Nathan Eccleston.
      • 55:11 Ryan Babel has an effort from just inside the box that misses to the left of the goal.
      • 53:42 Mihai Nesu delivers the ball.
      • 53:16 Foul by Christian Poulsen on Michael Silberbauer, free kick awarded. Tim Cornelisse takes the free kick.
      • 52:37 Long range shot by Leon de Kogel goes wide right of the target.
      • 51:05 Barry Maguire takes a inswinging corner from the left by-line played to the near post.
      • 49:24 Dries Mertens takes a shot. Brad Jones makes a comfortable save.
      • 45:01 The second half begins.
      • 45:01 Substitution Sotirios Kyrgiakos is brought on as a substitute for Martin Skrtel.
      • Half Time
      • 45:00+3:21 The ref blows to signal half-time.
      • 45:00+1:20 The ball is sent over by Jonjo Shelvey.
      • 45:00 Indirect free kick taken by Michel Vorm.
      • 45:00 Substitution Leon de Kogel is brought on as a substitute for Ricky van Wolfswinkel.
      • 45:00 The referee blows for offside.
      • 44:43 The ball is sent over by Fabio Aurelio, clearance made by Michael Silberbauer.
      • 44:38 The ball is delivered by Martin Kelly, clearance by Michael Silberbauer.
      • 38:44 Joe Cole challenges Michael Silberbauer unfairly and gives away a free kick. Free kick taken by Sander Keller.
      • 35:58 Corner taken by Barry Maguire from the left by-line played to the near post, clearance made by Jonjo Shelvey.
      • 34:47 The ball is sent over by Tim Cornelisse, clearance made by Danny Wilson.
      • 32:37 Ryan Babel takes a shot. Blocked by Sander Keller.
      • 31:13 Fabio Aurelio sends in a cross, Jan Wuytens makes a clearance.
      • 29:50 Foul by Ricky van Wolfswinkel on Martin Kelly, free kick awarded. Christian Poulsen restarts play with the free kick.
      • 25:09 The ball is crossed by Martin Kelly.
      • 24:28 Corner taken left-footed by Fabio Aurelio from the right by-line to the near post, clearance by Jan Wuytens.
      • 24:09 Ryan Babel delivers the ball, Tim Cornelisse makes a clearance.
      • 23:14 Michael Silberbauer challenges Nathan Eccleston unfairly and gives away a free kick. Free kick crossed left-footed by Fabio Aurelio from left wing, clearance by Sander Keller.
      • 21:46 Inswinging corner taken right-footed by Jonjo Shelvey from the left by-line to the near post, Danny Wilson has a headed effort from close range and clears the bar.
      • 21:39 The ball is swung over by Fabio Aurelio, clearance by Jan Wuytens.
      • 20:19 The ball is swung over by Ricky van Wolfswinkel, Brad Jones makes a save.
      • 19:58 Ricky van Wolfswinkel takes a shot. Danny Wilson gets a block in.
      • 18:43 Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Milan Jovanovic by Gianluca Nijholt. Martin Skrtel takes the free kick.
      • 15:54 Mihai Nesu concedes a free kick for a foul on Ryan Babel. Fabio Aurelio shoots direct from the free kick.
      • 13:52 Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Mihai Nesu by Ryan Babel. Mihai Nesu takes the direct free kick.
      • 10:32 Free kick awarded for a foul by Christian Poulsen on Barry Maguire. Direct free kick taken by Jan Wuytens.
      • 7:35 Milan Jovanovic takes a shot.
      • 5:57 Booking Nathan Eccleston booked.
      • 4:34 Martin Kelly challenges Dries Mertens unfairly and gives away a free kick. Mihai Nesu takes the free kick.
      • 0:00 The ref blows the whistle to start the match.

      Live text and data provided by The Press Association.



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      15 Dec 2010 23:59 UK

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      Europa Group A table snapshot

      As it stood on 15 Dec 2010 23:59 UK

      Position Team P GD PTS
      1 Man City 5 5 10
      2 Lech Poznan 5 2 8
      3 Juventus 5 0 5
      4 SV Salzburg 5 -7 2

      Europa Group B table snapshot

      As it stood on 15 Dec 2010 23:59 UK

      Position Team P GD PTS
      1 Bayer Leverkusen 5 6 11
      2 Atletico Madrid 5 2 7
      3 Aris Salonika 5 0 7
      4 Rosenborg 5 -8 3

      Europa Group C table snapshot

      As it stood on 15 Dec 2010 23:59 UK

      Position Team P GD PTS
      1 Sporting 5 9 12
      2 AA Gent 5 -2 7
      3 Lille 5 -1 5
      4 Levski Sofia 5 -6 4

      Europa Group D table snapshot

      As it stood on 15 Dec 2010 23:59 UK

      Position Team P GD PTS
      1 Villarreal 6 3 12
      2 PAOK Salonika 6 2 11
      3 Dinamo Zagreb 6 -1 7
      4 Club Bruges 6 -4 3

      Europa Group E table snapshot

      As it stood on 15 Dec 2010 23:59 UK

      Position Team P GD PTS
      1 Dynamo Kiev 6 4 11
      2 BATE Borisov 6 0 10
      3 AZ Alkmaar 6 -2 7
      4 FC Sheriff Tiraspol 6 -2 5

      Europa Group F table snapshot

      As it stood on 15 Dec 2010 23:59 UK

      Position Team P GD PTS
      1 CSKA Moscow 6 15 16
      2 Sparta Prague 6 0 9
      3 Palermo 6 -4 7
      4 Lausanne Sports 6 -11 1

      Europa Group G table snapshot

      As it stood on 15 Dec 2010 23:59 UK

      Position Team P GD PTS
      1 Zenit St P'sbg 5 9 15
      2 AEK Athens 5 -1 7
      3 Anderlecht 5 -2 4
      4 Hajduk Split 5 -6 3

      Europa Group H table snapshot

      As it stood on 15 Dec 2010 23:59 UK

      Position Team P GD PTS
      1 VfB Stuttgart 5 6 12
      2 Young Boys 5 1 9
      3 Odense BK 5 -2 4
      4 Getafe 5 -5 4

      Europa Group I table snapshot

      As it stood on 15 Dec 2010 23:59 UK

      Position Team P GD PTS
      1 PSV Eindhoven 5 7 13
      2 FC Metalist Kharkiv 5 5 10
      3 Sampdoria 5 -1 5
      4 Debrecen 5 -11 0

      Europa Group J table snapshot

      As it stood on 15 Dec 2010 23:59 UK

      Position Team P GD PTS
      1 Paris SG 6 5 12
      2 Sevilla 6 3 10
      3 Borussia Dortmund 6 3 9
      4 Karpaty Lviv 6 -11 1

      Europa Group K table snapshot

      As it stood on 15 Dec 2010 23:59 UK

      Position Team P GD PTS
      1 Liverpool 6 5 10
      2 Napoli 6 -1 7
      3 Steaua Bucharest 6 -2 6
      4 FC Utrecht 6 -2 5

      Europa Group L table snapshot

      As it stood on 15 Dec 2010 23:59 UK

      Position Team P GD PTS
      1 FC Porto 6 10 16
      2 Besiktas 6 3 13
      3 CSKA Sofia 6 -6 3
      4 Rapid Vienna 6 -7 3

      see also
      Hodgson justifies Torres U-turn
      16 Dec 10 |  Liverpool
      Europa League as it happened
      15 Dec 10 |  Football
      Gerrard primed for Reds comeback
      23 Dec 10 |  Liverpool
      Steaua Bucharest 1-1 Liverpool
      02 Dec 10 |  Europe


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