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Liverpool FCUEFA Cup Final 1972-1973 1st Leg

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Uefa Cup Final 1st Leg, 10th May 1073, Anfield, 19:30pm

Liverpool 3-0 Borussia Monchengladbach

Referee: Erich Linemayr H-T: 2-0  Att: 41,169

Match Report

There had been heavy rain in Liverpool in the week before the first leg, nevertheless, Austrian referee Erich Linemayr decided that the first leg on 9 May would still go ahead. Minutes into the match it was apparent that the conditions were unplayable, the rain had intensified following the kick-off and the players were unable to pass the ball to each other. The referee took the decision to abandon the game after 27 minutes with the match to be played the next day.

The 27 minutes that had been played the previous day had given Liverpool manager Bill Shankly an insight into how to beat Borussia. He noted that defender Günter Netzer was suspect in the air, to exploit this he decided to omit Brian Hall in place of John Toshack, whom Shankly believed would exploit this weakness. The inclusion of Toshack had the desired effect. In the 21st minute his header across the penalty area from a Chris Lawler pass, set up the first goal for Kevin Keegan, who dived forward to head the ball into the far corner of the goal.

Keegan nearly extended Liverpool's lead four minutes later when they were awarded a penalty for handball. Alec Lindsay put a high pass into the penalty area; Borussia defender Rainer Bonhof, under pressure from Toshack, handled the ball and Liverpool were awarded a penalty. However, Keegan's penalty was saved by Borussia goalkeeper Wolfgang Kleff who pushed the effort round the post. Borussia nearly made Keegan pay for his penalty miss a few minutes later, but Dietmar Danner's shot hit the post. Keegan made amends in the 33rd minute when he scored again. Emlyn Hughes headed the ball into the Borussia penalty area, Toshack who was facing away from the Borussia goal headed the ball back to Keegan, who volleyed the ball into the goal from ten yards to give Liverpool a 2–0 lead.

Liverpool extended their lead in the 60th minute when defender Larry Lloyd scored. Toshack won Liverpool a corner and with Borussia defender Netzer focusing on the striker, Lloyd was left unmarked to head in Keegan's corner and extend the English club's lead to 3–0. Despite Liverpool's goals Borussia were presented with an opportunity to get back into the tie when they were awarded a penalty in the 65th minute. Steve Heighway's tackle on Henning Jensen was judged to be a foul by Austrian referee Linemayr. Jupp Heynckes took the penalty for the German team hitting it to Liverpool goalkeeper Ray Clemence's right, but Clemence dived the right way and saved the penalty, preventing Borussia from scoring an away goal. No further goals were scored and the referee blew for full-time with the final score 3–0 to Liverpool.

Shankly was equivocal in his praise of the players after the match stating: "It was an international-class game. Really tremendous. I am not making predictions about the second-leg, but we have a distinct advantage because we did not give away a goal." Shankly had Clemence to thank for Liverpool not conceding an away goal and the goalkeeper revealed that he had done his homework on the penalty taker Heynckes: "I watched Heynckes take a penalty in the semi-final on television and decided to dive the same way. The save was a reward for my homework."

Team Line-Up's
 Liverpool  Borussia Monchengladbach
 R Clemence  W Kleff
 C Lawler  H Michalik
 A Lindsay  G Netzer
 T Smith  R Bonhof
 L Llyod  B Vogts
 E Hughes  H Wimmer
 K Keegan  D Danner
 P Cormack  C Kulik
 J Toshack  H Jensen
 S Heighway  B Rupp
 I Callaghan  J Heynkes
 Substitutes  Substitutes
 B Hall  A Simonsen
 F Lane  
 T Storton  
 P Thompson  
 P Boersma  
 B Hall for S Heigway 83'  A Simonsen for B Rupp 82'
 K Keegan 21'  
 K Keegan 32'  
 L Lloyd 61'  
 Yellow Cards
 Red Cards
 Erich Linemayer