YB survive a late goalmouth scramble to claim a point that they deserve: they scored two excellent goals and played some snappy and speedy stuff. There were positives for Liverpool, such as the performance of Shelvey and the possible resurrection of Cole (sort of), but they again failed to see the job through and let two leads slip. Now they'll have to get a result in Udinese in two weeks.
Here comes the cavalry .... no, it's only Stewart Downing. His cross goes into the Kop.
Brilliant GOAL! Liverpool 2-2 YB (Zverotic 89')
YB created space with yet more slick passing and then Zverotic enflamed the ball into the net from 20 yards!
Strong play by Shelvey, who has been less prominent since the introductions of Gerrard and Suarez but still useful. He snuffed out a YB counterattack there with fine tackle.
Freekick to Liverpool, about 27 yards from goal and almost central. Suarez range. Gerrard ushers Suarez away so he can take it himself .... and whacks it into the Irish Sea.
A slack pass from Gerrard gives YB a chance, but Skrtel saves his captain.
This time YB do get off a shot but Reina blocks Zverotic's 25-yard blaster.
Fine play by YB, showing nimble touches as they tore forward. But Liverpool defended well and prevented them from getting in a shot.
Sahin booked. I didn't see the incident but like to think he headbutted a walrus.
YB change: Nuzzolo off, Frey on.
And on that note, Cole is substituted. At least he gets a rousing send-off from the appreciative crowd. On trots Sterling.
GOAL! Liverpool 2-1 YB (Cole 72')
Cole celebrates like he's won the World Cup and why not? He's had a poxy time at Liverpool and he's just crowned a decent performance with a nice goal. Suarez cut in from the left and fed Gerrard, who slipped it through to Cole, who tucked a low shot under the out-rushing keeper from nine yards. Of course, the way his Liverpool career has gone so far means he's probably going to get sent off any minute ...
Liverpool are winning more corners than Marlo Stanfield but making much less profit from them. They should start taking them short, as this formulaic cross into the box isn't working.
The keeper misses another corner, this time from Shelvey. No one can take advantage. Not really a highlight but I thought I'd mention it for the benefit of the YB fans, who haven't seen much of the action over the last few minutes as they've been facing the other way and doing a Poznan.
Cole gets a freekick wide on the right for being nudged to the ground. Gerrard delivers. The keeper punches out for a corner.
Serious pressure being applied by Liverpool now, with Suarez nipping about and being a pain in the posterior to the visitors. He, Assaidi and Shelvey have all smashes low crosses into the six-yard box in the last couple of minutes and forced desperate interventions from the defenders.
Brenda Rodgers wants to secure his passage to the next round tonight rather than go to Udinese in need to a result. So off comes Susu and on comes the Premier League Player of the Season elect, Luis Suarez.
Sahin wins the ball about 25 yards from the YB goal, and offloads to Skrtel, who forgets how he is and embarks on a mazy dribble towards the box. His memory returns and he get rid of the ball to Assaidi, who miscontrols it and the chances evaporates.
Henderson lumbers down the right and curls an inviting ball towards Shelvey but it was fractionally too long.
Henderson gets confused by a bouncing ball and allows it to run to Bobadilla. YB are playing with a swagger now ... right up until the piffling long-range effort from Zarate, which Reina gathers disdainfully.
GOAL! Liverpool 1-1 YB (Bobdilla 52')
Moments after Wolfli had saved from Cole at one end, YB ripped forward and Bobadila took a cross down brilliantly on his thigh and then walloped it into the top corner from 15 yards and an acute angle. Lovely goal!
So it's been a bright start by YB, just as in the first period. Zverotic just came mighty close to equalising, as his swirler from 25 yards skimmed the post on its way wide.
Here's a question to consider, courtesy of Alan Wake. "What would be the price of Downing, Cole & Carroll if Liverpool decides to sell them in January?" I reckon Downing would be the most expensive of that lot, say around £4m. Only Tony Pulis would spent as much as that on Andy Carroll, who is probably, possibly, a shade better than Cameron Jerome. And taht's as high as the praise should get for him.
"You've been given permission to use the abbreviation YB to 'save your typing fingers'?" tuts Matt Dony. "What kind of namby-pamby, wet, lazy journo does Graham Ash take you for? It's not as if Young Boys is a lengthy moniker. Take away the space, and it's the same number of characters as Liverpool. Or, L, as you can refer to them from now on. Great goal by JjS, by the way, with a lovely build up by JC and S. (What a load of BS)"
A decent display from Liverpool against dicey opponents. Shelvey has reveled in the Suarez role, again proving what an intelligent and jarring player he can be. Suso and Assaidi have shown nice flourishes without quite producing the finishes required. Cole has been in and out. Still lots of fun to come from this game, you fell.
Cole just can't find consistency. He does something good (usually involving the excellent Shelvey) and then does something shoddy, such as the cross that he has just directed into the keeper's arms when team-mates were baying for a decent delivery in the box.
More snappy play from Shelvey and Cole, who lays a perfect pass into the path of Suso. The youngster decides to take his shot early rather than carry on into the box and he sidefoots his low effort just wide. More composure needed there. And more accuracy, obviously.
Reina comes to meet a YB freekick and just about gets enough on it to clear the danger, with the aid of Skrtel. "With Downing and Cole playing, why does it always feel as though LFC are down two men?" wonders Tephen Smith, who may have written that before the game. " It's one thing to not add anything to the squad and just take up space; it's another thing when you actually help your opponents." Cole has been alright tonight, not £80,000-per-week alright (or whatever) but not disgraceful. Downing is on the bench. NO, hold on, he's actually on the pitch, I'd clean forgotten! Point taken.
Young Boys' have perked up again and are starting to make it difficult for Liverpool to get out of their own half. "To spare your typing fingers, it's OK to call the visitors YB," discloses Grahame Ash. "That is what they are called in Switzerland." Thanks GA.
Off the line by Nuzzolo! Gerrard's corner from the left falls into the path of Cole, who shanks his shot from 10 yards but Skrtel almost turns it in, only for Nuzzolo to welly it away.
The sprightly Suso has yet another belt from distance. It's deflected inches wide.
Lvierpool look in control now. They're pressing diligently to disrupt Young Boys more than they did early doors, and there's a pleasing speed and variety to their attack.
GOAL! Liverpool 1-0 Young Boys (Shelvey 33')
Fine goal, featuring lovely interplay between Susu and Cole before the latter chipped the ball over the keeper to leave Shelvey with an elementary header into the net from two yards.
Wisdom whizzes down the right and sends over a splendid cross that eludes his team-mates. And on that note, Wisdom is substituted: apparently he's injured, though there was no sign of it during his spirited marauding of a moment ago. On comes Gerrard to tumultuous acclaim. Henderson will go to right-back, to less acclaim.
Wisdom charges down the right before feeding Suso, who rolls the ball on to his left foot and clips in a decent shot that Wolfli saves.
Young Boys' fans unfurl a banner reading "In Memory of Hillsborough". Anfield applauds their class and humanity.
A sublime flick from Shelvey put Henderson clean through. Henderson doesn't quite catch his shot as sweetly as he could have and the keeper is able to parry it. Corner to Liverpool. Cleared by Young Boys.
Marvelous tricky and penetrative run by Assaidi, searing in from the left, past two defenders and into the box. Then he plays it into the path of Cole ... who's offside.
Veskovac ouches loudly and appeals for medical help: his hamstring appears to have gone. He'll have to be replaced.
A timely tackle by Skrtel deflects a Farnerud shot wide after Young Boys had caught Liverpool trying to play their way out of defence in pedantic fashion.
Henderson passes a 25-yard freekick to goalkeeper Wolfli.
Liverpool are not playing with a striker as such, primarily because they don't have one, since Suarez is on the bench. Shelvey is the most advanced central player and he's done well so far. He dropped deep just now to thread a ball through to the overlapping Cole, who dragged a reasonable shot inches wide from 16 yards.
Suso rips in from the left and decides to have a ping from 25 yards. There's a nice souvenir ball for someone sitting in Row W.
Another shot on target for Young Boys, in case you've got your abacus handy. Reina saves Schneuwly's 25-yard trickler with ease.
Skrtel finds Suso with a fine raking pass, but the Spaniard can't control it. It squirts out to Assaidi, who's looking bright down the left but he can't supply a useful cross.
Young Boys are pleasing. Let me elaborate, please. There's a brazenness to their approach to match their slickness, as they attack in great numbers, throwing five or six players into the box. They're not here for any glorious draw at Anfield: they come for victory.
Lovely play by Young Boys, who are looking slick and dangerous. Bobdaila trilled a great ball wide to Nuzzolo, who banged it in low and hard, making for an uncomfortable save for Reina.
Nice idea by Shelvey there, except perhaps that his pass between two defenders was intended for Joe Cole. Not to worry, it didn't get there as Zverotcic cut it out.
After the impertinent start by the visitors, Liverpool are starting to settle.
Bobadila lets fly from 20 yards and brings a solid save from Reina, who hasn't been doing enough solid saving lately.
Young Boys get the game going and create a scoring chance within the first 10 seconds. They simply tore upfield from the kick-off and slipped in Veskovac, who couldn't direct his shot on goal. More please!
Liverpool: Reina, Wisdom, Downing, Carragher, Skrtel, Suso, Sahin, Henderson, Assaidi, Cole, Shelvey. Subs:
Jones, Jose Enrique, Suarez, Gerrard, Coates, Allen, Sterling.
Young Boys: Young Boys: Wolfli, Sutter, Nef, Veskovac, Lecjaks, Zverotic,
Farnerud, Zarate, Schneuwly, Nuzzolo, Bobadilla. Subs: Mvogo,
Gonzalez, Ojala, Vitkieviez, Costanzo, Frey, Doubai.
Paul will be here shortly …
In the meantime, here's Andy Hunter's match preview:
Brendan Rodgers believes Liverpool will not continue to follow Chelsea's unstable managerial course under owners who apologised to him for the state of the first-team squad at Anfield. Though the Northern Irishman became Liverpool's fourth manager in two years when he arrived in June, and is the third to work under Fenway Sports Group since they took control in October 2010, he does not fear a repeat of the ruthlessness that cost Roberto Di Matteo his job at Stamford Bridge. That confidence is based on the support of Liverpool's principal owner John W Henry and chairman Tom Werner who, Rodgers revealed, accepted responsibility for the weakness of the squad following the club's calamitous end to the summer transfer window.
The Liverpool manager, who faces Young Boys of Berne in the Europa League on Thursday, admitted Di Matteo's sacking was a "disappointing day" for all managers but denied working in a no-win industry. "That is true at some clubs," he said. "This is a different club."
Rodgers, handed a three-year contract with the option of an extra year by FSG, elaborated: "There comes a point when the reality has to set in. We spoke about it at length before I came into here. Everyone knows that to turn around Liverpool, to get it to where we want to be and where the club deserves to be, there is not going to be a quick fix unless you are going to throw an absolute fortune at it. The owners have been true to their word. They have been remarkable with the support that I have been given, especially early on when we lost some games. I had messages of support, some were apologetic that I had been given the group I have been given. Their support has been unswerving. As a manager that bodes well going forward."
The Liverpool manager met Werner following the 3-0 win over Wigan on Saturday and admits his treatment during a difficult start at Anfield is further cause to believe FSG have a long-term approach. He added: "I really respect that people have been lenient with me because this is a club that demands so much. But I have also been respectful of how realistic people have been."
Liverpool beat the Swiss club 5-3 in the opening game of Group A, but Young Boys have since resurrected their campaign with back-to-back wins over Udinese. Rodgers, who may allow Jon Flanagan and Danny Wilson to go on loan on Thursday, said: "They have got a threat and can score goals. They commit a lot of players forward and if you look at the way they play there are sometimes six players in the box. It leaves them a wee bit open going the other way."