'Lazy' Liverpool lose to Udinese in Europa League
Spurs draw against Panathinaikos and Newcastle cruise to victory over Bordeaux
LIVERPOOL manager Brendan Rodgers was not a happy man after his side lost to Udinese 3-2 at Anfield. The Reds had taken a first-half lead through Jonjo Shelvey but the Italian visitors scored three second-half goals to win the Europa League clash.
Luis Suarez's goal on 75 minutes had no bearing on the result and Rodgers couldn't contain his anger in the post-match press conference. "We were very, very good in the first half," he said. "[But] we lose concentration and become lazy, and all of a sudden in that period we find ourselves 3-1 down."
Rodgers said the most distressing aspect of the defence was the "poor" nature of the goals they conceded in the second half. "We can't have to score three, four or five goals to win games," he continued.
"That's the end we have to work hard on. Some of our quality and domination of the ball is very good, we just concede goals too early and that's something we need to improve on".
Liverpool lie third in Group A, one point behind joint leaders Udinese and Anzhi Makhachkala, and that's where Tottenham find themselves in group J after they were held at home by Greek side Panathinaikos.
The Lilywhites took the lead on 35 minutes when Michael Dawson headed home but they squandered a host of chances to consolidate their lead as the game wore on. Thirteen minutes from time, Panathinaikos levelled through Spanish striker Toche and Andre Villas-Boas was left to rue his side's missed chances.
"I think you score the second and it's end of story," said the Spurs manager. "Obviously we are disappointed with the result, there's no denying that."
But Villas-Boas rejected suggestions that his side had eased up after taking the lead. "I don't think we were complacent," he replied. "It is a pity, obviously, because the game in the first half looked under our control, but I think maybe physically it took its toll in the second half and that's why we conceded late."
There were no such problems for Newcastle, who eased to a 3-0 victory in their tie against Bordeaux - a victory that leaves the Magpies on top of Group D. Once Shola Ameobi sidefooted home on 16 minutes the French side were never at the races, and when Henrique put the ball into his own net five minutes from the break the game was as good as dead. Papiss Cisse netted a third on 49 minutes and Newcastle saw out the rest of the tie without difficulty.
"What pleased me most is that we played with verve and energy again," said Newcastle boss Alan Pardew. "That was a team that hasn't been beaten for 17 games so that is a great result. For me as a manager, it was a perfect night." ·