Reds foiled again by fierce Tigers

Liverpool struggled to a third successive Premier League draw at Anfield as new-boys Hull impressed on the road again, the game ending 2-2.The Tigers had already won at Arsenal and Tottenham and scored three in defeat at Manchester United.

And if not for Steven Gerrard, they would have ended Liverpool's season-long unbeaten home record.

Hull were two ahead on Saturday through Paul McShane and a Jamie Carragher own goal before Gerrard scored twice in eight minutes, taking his tally for the season to 11.

Gerrard was among the players returning after being rested from the Champions League win over Eindhoven in midweek, along with Jose Reina, Dirk Kuyt and Xabi Alonso.

Manager Rafael Benitez reverted to the same side which won at Blackburn last weekend, which meant Robbie Keane was on the bench and Sami Hyypia preferred to Daniel Agger.

Hull made just one change from the side which beat Middlesbrough last Saturday, Bernard Mendy taking over from Dean Marney, who was on the bench.

And although Hull were put under instant pressure, they soon started to confront Liverpool all over the pitch, working out that Andrea Dossena has limited pace and Reina does not take kindly to being pressured.

Hull could have been ahead after five minutes when full-back Sam Ricketts burst down the line, brushing Yossi Benayoun aside, and fed Nicky Barmby on the Hull left.

There were loud appeals for a penalty when the former Liverpool man's cross looked to have struck the arm of Javier Mascherano as he slid in to clear for a corner.

The appeals were waved away but it was no surprise when Hull took the lead after 12 minutes.

A Geovanni free-kick on the right sailed right across the box and was knocked back into the danger area by Marlon King, where McShane rose to head into the top corner.

Hull were full of pace, drive and desire and after 22 minutes they scored again.

After switching the play from left to right, via King's long ball, Mendy went past Dossena once more and pulled the ball back into the six-yard box, where Carragher turned it high into his own net.

Just two minutes later however, Liverpool pulled one back. Kuyt surged down the right and fired in a low cross which fell for Gerrard to clip home from six yards.

McShane was booked for body-checking Gerrard and never seemed to recover from the blow, being replaced two minutes later by Marney.

And in what was now a tremendous match, Liverpool were level after 32 minutes, again through Gerrard.

Carragher's cross was headed down by Kuyt for Benayoun to hook on, giving Gerrard a 10-yarder for the equaliser.

Marney was booked for a foul on Hyypia two minutes after the break, the game continuing at the same rip-roaring pace.

Liverpool almost took the lead after 59 minutes when Hyypia's downward header from Gerrard's corner hit the foot of a post.

Then Albert Riera saw a swerving effort punched away by Boaz Myhill.

Hull were more content to defend and hit on the break, with Geovanni seeing one run end with a low drive that went wide of the far post.

Alonso curled a 20-yarder just over the bar, with Liverpool sending on Moroccan winger Nabil El Zhar for Benayoun after 74 minutes. Three minutes later Dean Windass came on for Barmby in only his fourth league appearance of the season.

Myhill then saved well from El Zhar, diving on the ball to halt Gerrard in the six-yard box. After 82 minutes Liverpool sent on Ryan Babel for Riera, before El Zhar was booked for a foul on Kamil Zayatte.

Lucas came on for Mascherano with four minutes left, the Argentinian having failed to stamp his usual authority on the match.

-School boy error made by Carra, hope he bounce back after this...
-Glad we have Gerrard to grab a point....good job skipper !!!

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