Liverpool's troubled season took another turn for the worse when it was eliminated from the FA Cup after second-tier Reading triumphed 2-1 in their third-round replay on Wednesday. The only trophy Liverpool can realistically win is the Europa League, with Rafa Benitez's side out of the Champions League and languishing in seventh in the Premier League.
Liverpool, which had drawn the first leg 1-1 at Reading, was thinking of a fourth-round fixture against Burnley as the replay entered the fourth minute of second-half stoppage time. Until Liverpool winger Yossi Benayoun fouled Shane Long in the penalty area, and Gylfi Sigurdsson scored from the spot to send the match into extra time.
Steven Gerrard's deflected strike off Reading defender Ryan Bertrand put the Reds ahead in first-half stoppage time. Liverpool was already coping without its dynamic duo of striker Fernando Torres and Gerrard. Torres departed with a twisted knee inside the first 30 minutes and Gerrard failed to appear at the start of the second half, with the midfielder believed to have sustained a hamstring strain.
Liverpool struggled as an attacking threat without them and couldn't recover after Long scored from six meters (yards) in the 100th minute to give Reading its first ever win at Anfield. In Wednesday's other third-round replay, Newcastle beat Plymouth 3-0 and will go to West Bromwich Albion on Jan. 23. Peter Lovenkrands' hat trick for the Magpies extended their unbeaten run to 13 games.