Liverpool 2 Man City 2: Dalglish thrilled with ‘fantastic’ Bellamy
Liverpool boss Kenny Dalglish full of praise for Craig Bellamy after striker's goal booked Reds' place in Wembley final
Kenny Dalglish once again heaped praise on Craig Bellamy after the Welsh striker’s goal booked Liverpool’s place in the Carling Cup final at the expense of Manchester City.
Nigel de Jong’s spectacular strike had edged the visitors ahead in the 31st minute – but City’s advantage was cancelled out when Micah Richards was adjudged to have handled the ball in the area and Steven Gerrard fired Liverpool ahead on aggregate from the spot.
Edin Dzeko then netted from close range with 23 minutes remaining to dampen spirits around Anfield before the outstanding Bellamy finished off an excellent move to seal Liverpool’s place in the final against Cardiff City.
“Bellamy showed a lot of quality,” said Dalglish after the 3-2 aggregate win. “It’s all very well talking about his effort and commitment – that is always there. Tonight he was fantastic in the quality of his performance as well.
“We’ve spoke about him many times in the past and waxed lyrical about him, and rightly so. He was fantastic tonight, but then every single one of them was fantastic. We were delighted with everybody, but certainly Craig put in a fantastic performance.”
The trip to Wembley on 26 February will be Liverpool’s first visit to the new ground, and their first tie at the national stadium since 1996.
And a thrilled Dalglish, who had uncharacteristically questioned the Reds’ attitude during their 3-1 defeat at Bolton Wanderers at the weekend, was delighted with his side’s display.
“The players were magnificent,” he continued. “Everything we thought was lacking on Saturday was there in abundance tonight, so they deserve great credit for the performance and result.
“It’s great for the people who have stood by us because it’s not been too easy a time for us over the last couple of years or so, and it is fantastic for the new owners.
“I’ve said many times before, if we all stick together, we’ll be a stronger force – and this is a huge reward for everybody that’s got any affiliation to Liverpool Football Club in any way, shape or form.”