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Cisse leads Liverpool to Super Cup

August 27, 2005 10:57 IST

Substitute Djibril Cisse scored two goals and made another to lead Liverpool to a 3-1 extra-time win over CSKA Moscow in an end-to-end European Super Cup match on Friday.

European champions Liverpool only took control of the match when coach Rafael Benitez brought on Mohamed Sissoko after 70 minutes and Cisse nine minutes later.

CSKA, the UEFA Cup holders, seemed set for victory after going ahead through Brazilian Daniel Carvalho in the 28th minute.

But, three minutes after coming on, Cisse equalised with a lucky goal which forced extra time.

The France striker then put Liverpool 2-1 ahead after 103 minutes and provided the cross for Luis Garcia to head the third goal with 11 minutes to play.

It was Liverpool's third Super Cup win following victories in 1977 and 2001, and only the second time in eight matches since the event moved to Monaco in 1998 that the European champions had triumphed.

Although Liverpool started brighter it was CSKA, the first Russian team to win the UEFA Cup and appear in this annual curtain-raiser, who took the lead with a well-worked goal.

Having soaked up plenty of pressure, CSKA counter-attacked and Brazilian Wagner Love split the defence with a perfect through ball.

Carvalho controlled his pass, rounded goalkeeper Jose Reina and fired home from an acute angle.

With captain Steven Gerrard out due to a calf injury, Liverpool failed to dominate in midfield where Milos Krasic had a fine game for CSKA.

Chidi Odiah was also outstanding for CSKA in the middle and the longer the match went on the more likely the Russian side looked like emerging the winners as their opponents failed to show a cutting edge in attack.

The Liverpool fans began to sing the name of their former favourite Michael Owen but Benitez brought on Cisse and his side benefited almost immediately.

ATTEMPTED CLEARANCE

Sergey Ignashevich failed to clear a Garcia knock-on before goalkeeper Igor Akinfeev's attempted clearance hit Cisse and bounced towards the empty net before the substitute smashed the ball home to equalise.

The English side dominated extra time and grabbed the lead after 103 minutes.

The ball broke from defence and Dietmar Hamann swept a long ball up to Cisse, who made the most of Ignashevich's mistimed leap to fire a shot at goal which Akinfeev saved brilliantly, only for the Liverpool sub to power home the rebound.

Garcia added the third with a free header six minutes later from a Cisse cross and the CSKA fans, who arrived in Monaco in their thousands, were silenced for the first time.

Among the Russians looking glum at the end was billionaire Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich, a minority shareholder in the Sibneft oil company which has bankrolled CSKA's recent transformation on the European stage.

Mike Collett
Source:
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