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Saturday Summary

The panel debate a controversial goal for Norwich plus a clanger and a hat-trick for Wigan...

Last Updated: 25/11/12 at 08:56

Merse, Le Tiss, Thommo and Charlie discuss Redknapp's Rangers, Al-Habsi's clanger and some frustration for David Moyes as they review Saturday's Premier League action...

Paul Merson on the task facing Harry Redknapp after QPR's 3-1 defeat at Manchester United

"He would have taken encouragement for 60-odd minutes and then for 10 minutes he would have been thinking 'woah, what a job we've got here'. They were outstanding in the first half, as comfortable as anybody's been at Old Trafford, and in the second half they scored through Mackie. They probably could have gone two up with better passes, they broke very well and if they'd got the second goal then who knows? But you know with Man United they'll just never give up.

"Clint Hill was very good, Shaun Derry was very good, Ryan Nelsen was very good. They're the ones that are going to stand up and be counted. They got stuck in and when they do that, the others can't help but follow. Jamie Mackie worked hard and Djibril Cisse didn't have a lot but he worked hard for the team, which was the most important thing. Sir Alex Ferguson brought Anderson and Javier Hernandez on and all of a sudden it changed; you don't mind getting beat by a bit of good play but bad defending is not good enough. They were good for 60 minutes, but after that no. It will be interesting to see what team Redknapp picks come Tuesday night at Sunderland because this team played very well for 60-odd minutes.

"Man United have got Man City in a couple of weeks and if they play like that against Man City for 60 minutes then it'll be like it was last year; they'll score six. It was so bad and people of the standard of David Silva, Sergio Aguero and Carlos Tevez will hurt you. If QPR were just a little bit better in the final third when they were 1-0 up they would have run away with this game. Sir Alex Ferguson will be very worried about that."

Read our match report here

Matt Le Tissier on the controversial free-kick that saw Norwich secure a 1-1 draw with Everton

"It's always very disappointing when you concede a goal late in the game and David Moyes will be incredibly frustrated because the free-kick that was awarded to be swung in for Sebastien Bassong to head the equaliser was a really, really soft one. Leighton Baines was pressurising Steve Morrison, who was going away from goal quite a way out and it doesn't look like he made any contact with him whatsoever. Maybe, as defenders do when they go and close down, he popped his arm on his back. Morrison went to pass the ball and took a complete air shot at the ball and fell over. The referee blew for a foul, I don't think it's a foul and David Moyes was raging on the touchline because he didn't think it was either.

"Having said that, Johnny Heitinga needed to defend better from the ball that was whpped in. Bradley Johnson whipped it to the far post and Heitinga was looking like he was marking Bassong. As the ball came in he went back towards the goal, but he didn't see where Bassong was behind him. Eventually the ball went over his head and Bassong headed it down and it hit the underside of the crossbar and Grant Holt knocked it in for good measure, but the ball was already about a foot over the line. It was definitely a Bassong goal and Moyes will be disappointed.

"It wasn't the flowing football that we've seen a lot from Everton this season. They definitely miss Marouane Fellaini in the line-up and they had to tinker with the shape a little bit which meant the Pienaar-Baines combination didn't get going because Bryan Oviedo was playing on the left-hand side. Steven Pienaar was more central and trying to support Nikica Jelavic, who seems to have gone off the boil a little bit lately."

Read our match report here

Charlie Nicholas on Jordi Gomez's hat-trick and Ali Al-Habsi's blunder in Wigan's 3-2 win over Reading

"The hat-trick had everything; right foot, left foot and a header. He could have scored another two or three to be fair - he missed a couple of great chances - and so did Arouna Kone. Gomez will get the headlines for his hat-trick, but I tell you the most relieved man will be Ali Al-Habsi, who made the biggest shocker of a goalkeeping mistake that you've seen for a long, long time. Hal Robson-Kanu hit it and the defender blocked it on the penalty spot and it spun high up in the air and it was landing just over the bar or going to clip the top of the bar. He tried to palm it back over the bar, but he softened his fingers and it hit the underside of the bar, came down on the line and the spin on the ball was so severe that it went over the line by about a foot. He tried to claw it back, but he couldn't and he was so embarrassed because it put Reading back in it.

"It took until the 92nd minute before Gomez popped up on the counter-attack as Reading looked the more likely to win. It ended up that Roberto Martinez's Wigan ended up with the three points. Unbelievable! To have looked as if there was nothing for them today to all of a sudden not just take something from the game, but to take all three points, this was a massive win for Wigan."

Read our match report here

Phil Thompson on Charlie Adam's goalscoring form after Stoke's 1-0 win over Fulham

"It wasn't a bad game, but wasn't as good as I would have liked. There weren't enough chances in free-flowing football. Fulham did well to come back into the game and had a lot of possession, but there's no cutting edge to them. Stoke always looked more threatening and because Brede Hangeland wasn't playing you'd imagine they would have great chances from set-pieces and they did, but they didn't score from them.

"The one they scored was a diagonal ball in to Peter Crouch who knocked it down and there was so much time for Charlie Adam, just inside the six-yard box to control it with his back to goal, turn and put it into the net. He's scored twice in the last three games and got six points for them. Tony Pulis was saying that he wanted and believed he could get more goals, so he's doing what his manager has asked.

"You know that he's got that in his locker. Maybe he played a little bit deeper at Liverpool and didn't get the opportunity to get forward, but this is different. He's playing in more of a three-man midfield and is being allowed to go and play off Peter Crouch. Charlie Adam knows the players that he's playing with and he's trying to react and get in the box. He's scored two and it's six valuable points for Stoke."

Read our match report here

The Story of Soccer Saturday

Take a look back at how events unfolded in the Soccer Saturday studio this week with our clip of video highlights from the show.

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Readers' Comments

I

sn'tthis strange. Last season we were worried that we were stuck with a Dinosaur in Moyes while Liverpool and Everton were disappearing into the distance with their young, spritely managerts, playing football from heaven. Progressive managers, they said. Managers who understand the modern game.........

HarryBoulton
Rodgers: The pressure's on

B

eing consistently and unrelentingly dog turd really takes it out of you. Try shadow boxing. That's what it's like watching Liverpool, punching thin air.

sinbadsdad
Neville: Reds need a rest

G

ood list, some crackers in there. For me, I'd have had Steve McManaman for Liverpool away at Celtic in the UEFA cup in 1997. I was in the ground that night and everyone kept screaming at him to make a pass, but he just kept going and going and going...brilliant, and in the dying minutes too.

uncle-muller
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