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Cissé inspires Liverpool comeback

Liverpool FC 3-1 PFC CSKA Moskva (aet)
Substitute Djibril Cissé helped make it a hat-trick of UEFA Super Cup wins for Liverpool FC.

Extra time
The French international took the game into extra time with a scrambled effort in the 82nd minute to cancel out Daniel Carvalho's first-half strike. Cissé then kept his cool to finish at the second attempt in the 103rd minute before setting up Luis García to ensure Liverpool added to their Super Cup successes of 1977 and 2001.

Gerrard missing
The European champions began with six of the team that started the UEFA Champions League final in May, with the calf injury suffered by Steven Gerrard, UEFA's newly crowned MVP from last season, allowing Jamie Carragher to wear the captain's armband. The English club fielded two summer signings in goalkeeper José Reina and winger Boudewijn Zenden.

Lone striker
For CSKA, Vágner Love shook off a leg problem to take the lone striker's role in an attack shorn of the services of Croatia striker Ivica Olic, after his serious knee injury earlier this month. Attacking midfielder Miloš Krasic, the only CSKA player not to start the UEFA Cup final, earned the nod ahead of Rolan Gusev.

Russian expectancy
With the several thousand Russian fans in full voice and the English contingent doing their best to rival them, the stage was set for a rousing night. It was Liverpool who had the first opportunity, Dietmar Hamann trying his luck from the edge of the area but Igor Akinfeev was equal to it as he was when denying the on-rushing Luis García two minutes later.

Counterattacking plan
García and Fernando Morientes then fired shots over and wide respectively, while CSKA were content to try and counter. The Russian club needed some inspiration and it came in the 27th minute when Krasic cut inside Sami Hyypiä and sent a curling shot just wide.

Deadlock broken
A minute later, Vágner Love brilliantly split the Liverpool defence and Daniel Carvalho raced through at an angle before sliding the ball past Reina. The UEFA Cup holders were in front, much to the delight of their ecstatic supporters, many of whom had already shed their shirts on a typically balmy evening in Monaco.

Wayward shooting
Liverpool ended the half as they began but could not keep their poise in front of goal, notably García and Hamann. CSKA's gameplan of waiting for their chance had paid off and they were content to see out the half.

Dangerous free-kick
Daniel Carvalho nearly added a second with a 50th minute free-kick. In response, Josemi twice tried his luck from right-back as Liverpool again applied pressure but too often bright moves floundered. Instead, CSKA retained the cutting edge and Daniel Carvalho raced through midway through the half, only for Hyypiä to block.

Equalising goal
The frustrated Liverpool fans eventually began to sing the name of former favourite Michael Owen. However, 79th-minute substitute Cissé also had their backing and he repaid them when racing on to García's flick from Reina's long clearance. When the ball cannoned goalwards from Ignashevich's challenge, Cissé had the easiest of finishes.

Bright move
The decisive second came via a swift counterattack, this time from Liverpool. After a bright move started by Daniel Carvalho came to nothing, Hamann switched the play with a long pass over the top and Cissé fired in a shot on Akinfeev. The goalkeeper could only parry the ball and the Frenchman made no mistake at the second time of asking. Cissé then turned provider to cross for García to head past a stranded Akinfeev and clinch victory.