Europa League - Battling Liverpool hold Napoli

Thu, 21 Oct 19:56:00 2010

Liverpool put their domestic struggles behind them to earn a deserved 0-0 draw with Napoli in the Europa League.

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Reds manager Roy Hodgson's gamble in leaving at home a handful of his senior players - including Fernando Torres and Steven Gerrard - paid off in some respect at the Stadio San Paolo.

Many tipped the hopelessly out-of-form Reds for defeat after bringing a weakened side to Naples, but they withstood long spells of pressure to leave with a point.

The closest they came to conceding was in first-half added time when Paul Konchesky cleared Marek Hamsik's shot off the line in the nick of time, while Ryan Babel could have snatched victory with 20 minutes to go but shot too close to goalkeeper Morgan de Sanctis.

Hodgson had admitted in his pre-match press conference that the Premier League had to take priority because of their woeful start to the season, with just one win in eight games leaving them 19th in the table, and that was why he had rested Torres, Gerrard, Raul Meireles and Lucas Leiva.

But they were not missed as they kept their unbeaten record in the competition this season intact.

PA Sport

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