Steven Gerrard was Liverpool’s hero yet again as they remained in the FA Cup on Sunday after, for the second time in a week, being held to a 1-1 draw by city rivals Everton at Anfield.
When the teams met on Monday in a Merseyside derby draw which dented Liverpool’s Premier League title ambitions, it was Everton who fought back but Sunday’s match saw the Reds come from behind.
Everton took the lead in this fourth round tie in the 27th minute when Liverpool, as happened on Monday, failed to mark Tim Cahill in the box.
The Australia midfielder’s header from Steven Pienaar’s corner was nodded home from close range by Joleon Lescott.
But Gerrard, as he’s done so often before, dragged Liverpool back into the match with a well-struck shot six minutes before the hour although Everton’s United States goalkeeper Tim Howard ought to have saved at his near post from the England midfielder.
Earlier, Arsenal were also left contemplating the somewhat unwelcome prospect of an FA Cup replay, against Cardiff City, after their Welsh opponents held them to a goalless draw at Ninian Park.
“We could do without it, 100 percent but let’s not complain because we play football,” said Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger. “It’s one more game to play. If that’s the price we have to pay to stay in the hat, we’re happy to do it.”
Cardiff, beaten in last year’s final by Portsmouth, spurned several good chances in the first half in a match where Arsenal missed opportunities of their own against the second-tier Championship club.
This match was a repeat of the 1927 final which Cardiff won 1-0 to become the only non-English club to win the FA Cup.
Afterwards Cardiff’s Roger Johnson praised the Bluebirds’ defending which helped earn them a second crack against Arsenal at the Emirates Stadium on February 3.
“We have given sloppy goals away late on this season, that has been our downfall,” he told Setanta Sports. “But we were strong today and held on.
Holders Portsmouth were knocked out of the FA Cup on Saturday after losing 2-0 at their Fratton Park home to Cardiff’s bitter Welsh rivals Swansea, who also play in the Championship.
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