Liverpool 1, Norwich City 1

Striker Grant Holt came off the bench to score with a stunning header and earn Norwich City a point from a pulsating Premier League contest at Anfield.

Holt, left out of the starting line-up once again, marked his 100th appearance for the Canaries by heading powerfully home from Anthony Pilkington's cross to equalise on the hour, just four minutes after coming on for Elliott Bennett.

Liverpool had taken the lead in first-half stoppage time through ex-Canary Craig Bellamy and they struck the woodwork three times as Paul Lambert's men rode their luck at times.

Holt might even have had a second when Pepe Reina kept out another powerful header five minutes later, but in the end City were grateful to a stunning save by goalkeeper John Ruddy from a Luis Suarez volley in the fifth minute of stoppage time for guaranteeing a point from a match played at times at bewildering pace.

After the disappointments at Chelsea and Manchester United, City had earned their reward for another battling display against one of the top flight's big guns.


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City boss Paul Lambert was able to name an unchanged eleven for the fifth game in a row, and kept the same seven substitutes named for the 3-1 win over Swansea a week earlier.

Defender Zak Whitbread missed out on a return to his old club, still sidelined by the hamstring injury he suffered in the 3-1 defeat at Chelsea eight weeks ago. Whitbread and injured colleague James Vaughan were watching the game from the directors' box.

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Liverpool boss Kenny Dalglish was without suspended Brazilian midfielder Lucas Leiva after he collected five bookings, with ex-Canary Craig Bellamy a surprise inclusion in the starting line-up. Glen Johnson, fit again after a hamstring injury, replaced Martin Kelly at right-back.

Striker Andy Carroll and midfielder Jordan Henderson, costing more than �50m between them, were among the substitutes.

Immediately before kick-off, fans at the Kop End displayed cards demanding 'Justice for the 96' in the continuing fight on behalf of the victims of the Hillsborough disaster of 1989, and a wall of noise greeted the kick-off with the Reds attacking the Kop goal.

Liverpool pressed down the right and Bradley Johnson was forced to concede the first corner after just two minutes, from which Skrtel came close to giving the hosts the lead, meeting the kick with an angled header that rattled the crossbar.

In the fifth minute, Suarez looked certain to open the scoring as he wriggled his way into the City penalty area but with only Ruddy to beat, fired wide.

As Liverpool maintained their lively start, Barnett cut out a cross from Glen Johnson after the full-back made good headway down the right.

A brilliant save by Ruddy kept the Canaries on terms in the 11th minute when Bellamy broke down the left and Suarez met his cross with a first-time effort that the 'keeper palmed on to the post with his left hand, Downing blasting the rebound wide when he should have done better.

After a neat turn by Adam, Suarez tried to float an effort over Ruddy from just outside the penalty area, but cleared the bar.

It was one-way traffic in the opening 15 minutes, but Downing, operating on the right, overhit a cross that was aimed for Suarez and City breathed again.

Hoolahan produced City's first shot at goal and his first-time effort was parried, not all that convincingly, by Reina before Liverpool cleared.

Suarez hooked a shot wide as the hosts returned to the attack.

The Canaries began to settle and a move of 14 passes produced their first corner after 21 minutes when Carragher headed clear from Bennett's cross under pressure from Pilkington. Fox took the corner from the left and Morison met it with a powerful header but Reina was right behind it.

A smart interception by Bennett gave him a shooting opportunity on the edge of the Liverpool area and though his first effort was blocked, he followed up with a second attempt that again forced Reina into action.

The pace of the game in the opening half-hour had been unrelenting, with the ball zipping from end to end and man to man like a pinball machine.

Tierney was shown the first yellow card for upending Downing on the right-hand corner of the penalty area. Downing's free-kick was blocked, as was his follow-up shot, with Adam getting a third attempt on goal, floating his shot just over with the outside of his right boot.

Russell Martin was in the right place at the right time when he cut out a Suarez cross at the near post after Ruddy had slid out but failed to gather the ball cleanly.

Suarez got his head to another Downing centre but his effort was comfortably gathered by Ruddy.

An ambitious shot from Bellamy sailed into the crowd three minutes before the interval.

City forced another corner when Hoolahan's cross was deflected out, but Fox's kick was overhit, sailing over Morison's head as he challenged Carragher.

One minute of stoppage time was added at the end of the half – one minute too many for City as Bellamy gave the hosts the lead.

Just a few seconds remained when Russell Martin tangled with Suarez as they challenged for a long ball from Reina and as Martin slipped to the ground, Bellamy was left with a run on goal and his sidefoot effort deflected off Tierney on its way past Ruddy.

• Half-time: Liverpool 1, Norwich City 0

Within 90 seconds of the restart, Reina was brought into action, diving to keep out Pilkington's shot after Morison had done well to control Ruddy's long ball forward.

Kuyt got in a glancing header from a cross from Downing as Liverpool broke but it lacked power and direction, and then Downing caught Tierney with a late challenge that left the full-back on the floor.

A brilliant turn by Suarez almost provided Liverpool's second goal after 50 minutes but Russell Martin just got a toe in to divert the Uruguayan's shot on to the post, the third time City had been spared by the woodwork.

Gerrard fired straight at Ruddy in the next attack and, with 56 minutes gone, Lambert made the first change, replacing Bennett with Holt, making his 100th senior appearance for City.

Bellamy's header was saved by Ruddy and as City pressed again, Hoolahan set up Fox for a long-range shot that Reina was safely behind.

But, in Boy's Own fashion on his 100th appearance, Holt delivered the equaliser within minutes of taking the field.

On the hour, Pilkington swung in the perfect cross from the right and Holt met it with a bullet-like header that gave Reina no chance. It was his second goal of the season and his 55th for the club.

It was almost 2-1 to City five minutes later thanks to the Pilkington-Holt combination. Pilkington swung in the cross from the left this time and Holt's header was goalbound until Reina stuck out his right hand to palm it away.

Suarez could so easily have restored Liverpool's lead as he broke free again but Ruddy, not entirely convincingly, managed to parry his effort.

Liverpool made a change with just over 20 minutes left as Henderson replaced goalscorer Bellamy.

Hoolahan was just off target from 20 yards after Morison set up the chance as City continued to adopt a positive approach.

Ruddy turned another Suarez effort across goal as the home side switched to the attack again then, with 10 minutes to go, Liverpool made a second change with Carroll replacing Downing.

There was mayhem in the Norwich area as Kuyt burst forward and Suarez poked another shot just wide, but the flag was up for offside.

Pilkington had a shot deflected wide for a corner after Morison tried to set him up on the edge of the penalty area.

With five minutes left the home crowd were baying for a penalty when Barnett challenged Adam on the corner of the penalty area, but the City man seemed to get the ball and referee Walton gave the free-kick Norwich's way.

In the final minute, Kuyt made way for Agger and there was a momentary panic for City when Ruddy let a cross through his fingers, leaving Barnett to clear for a corner.

Crofts replaced Pilkington and in a truly dramatic finale, Carroll headed inches wide with a free header from Gerrard's cross, and Ruddy made a stunning save from a Suarez volley to preserve a point for the Canaries.

• Result: Liverpool 1, Norwich City 1

• Liverpool: Reina; Glen Johnson, Carragher, Skrtel, Jose Enrique; Downing (Carroll, 80), Adam, Gerrard, Bellamy (Henderson, 69); Kuyt (Agger, 90), Suarez. Subs (not used): Doni, Flanagan, Spearing, Maxi Rodriguez.

• Norwich City: Ruddy; Naughton, Barnett, Russell Martin, Tierney; Bennett (Holt, 56), Fox, Bradley Johnson, Pilkington (Crofts, 90); Hoolahan; Morison. Subs (not used): Rudd, De Laet, Surman, Jackson, Wilbraham.

• Referee: Peter Walton (Northamptonshire)

• Attendance: 44,931

• Goals: Liverpool: Bellamy (45). City: Holt (60)

• Bookings: City: Tierney (34)

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