Liverpool hit by Meireles blow

The Portuguese midfielder left the St James Park field clutching

his shoulder on Wednesday night after coming off second best in a

challenge with Grecians defender Danny Coles after just 19 minutes.

Dalglish does not know exactly how long Meireles will be out for

but said: “Raul has hurt his collarbone. I don’t know what the

technical term is but he fell heavily. “He will come back with us

and we will see how long it is before he is back. “We don’t know

how serious it is but it’ll be a few weeks.” The win, Dalglish’s

200th as Reds boss, was inspired by a masterful performance from

Luis Suarez. The Uruguayan, left on the bench for the weekend win

at Arsenal, opened the scoring in the second-round tie with a

controlled volley after 23 minutes before setting up second-half

goals for Maxi Rodriguez and substitute Andy Carroll. There was

other good news in the form of Martin Skrtel getting through 90

minutes in his first action since returning from a calf problem,

while Danny Wilson was an assured presence alongside him in

defence. And Dalglish was delighted to see his side show such

application against their League One opponents. He said: “Martin

Skrtel got through the game no problem, Danny Wilson got 90

minutes, Andy Carroll gets his first goal of the season and Maxi

got a goal. We are quite happy we have gone through. “The most

pleasing thing was the attitude we had when we went on the pitch.

If we didn’t have that, we weren’t going to win.” Dalglish’s strong

selection saw the likes of Charlie Adam, Jordan Henderson, Pepe

Reina and Suarez all start, and suggested that the Scot sees the

competition as a chance to secure silverware as opposed to simply

give game time to his second-choice players. He said: “We will

treat the Carling Cup like any other game. The next one is a league

match against Bolton, but we will be totally committed and focussed

to try and win that.” Paul Tisdale’s side pulled a late goal back

through striker Daniel Nardiello, who found the net from the spot

after being brought down by a clumsy Skrtel challenge. And the

Grecians boss was happy with the effort put in by the League One

club, but acknowledged the class of their opponents. “I am proud of

the way we played, the boys can be pleased with what they showed

and it was nice to get on the scoresheet,” he said. “I am more than

happy with how we came back after a slow start and tried to play.

“We were expecting a strongish side and they had an extremely

strong bench, so we knew we didn’t want to score too early in case

they brought that bench on! “The chance we had just before

half-time was a really good chance and we had a couple of other

chances but it is always difficult when you come up against players

of that quality.”