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CARLING CUP Semi-Final 1st leg: Gerrard penalty seals Liverpool victory at Man City

Liverpool's defensive resolve proved adequate as they triumphed 1-0 over a disappointing Manchester City at the Etihad Stadium. City lost their first home game in 31 matches at the weekend to local rivals Manchester United and they succumbed again this time to fierce neighbours Liverpool.

Liverpool are the most successful club in League Cup history, having won it seven times, and they started this game the brighter with Andy Carroll going close.

But City failed to heed the warning and conceded the only goal of the game after 13 minutes.

Stefan Savic clearly fouled Daniel Agger inside the penalty area and Steven Gerrard made no mistake from the penalty spot.

Instead of spurring the home side on they looked lethargic and struggled to create any worthwhile chances, and this transmitted itself to the home crowd who were very quiet.

The Reds deserved their half-time lead and whilst City improved after the break, helped by the visitor's defending in depth, the chances tended to be speculative long range efforts and only Micah Richards looked like equalising but Pepe Reina made a fine save.

Sergio Aguero in the final minute fired narrowly over but this was a performance City boss Roberto Mancini will want to forget.

The League Cup is a competition that Liverpool boss Kenny Dalglish has yet to lift as a manager and this narrow advantage may put the Scot in a position to rectify that omission.

Referee: Lee Mason

Venue: Etihad Stadium

Attendance: 36,017

Man City scorers: Liverpool scorers: Gerrard (pen) 13

TRIBAL ASKS: Defeat to Man Utd, now Liverpool, are the wheels coming off the Man City bandwagon?

Yellow cards: Nasri (MANC), Carragher (LIV)

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Dave Williams

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