Fiorentina blanks Liverpool 2-0 in Champions League

Fiorentina blanks Liverpool 2-0 in Champions League

Published Sep. 29, 2009 11:51 p.m. ET

Teenage Fiorentina forward Stevan Jovetic scored twice in a 2-0 win over Liverpool in the Champions League on Tuesday, with the five-time winners from England failing to create a single chance in the first half.

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The 19-year-old Jovetic took a pass from Cristiano Zanetti and slid the ball past goalkeeper Pepe Reina in the 28th, then redirected in a shot from Juan Vargas nine minutes later.

"Football is pretty simple if you know how to interpret the game," Fiorentina coach Cesare Prandelli said. "We coaches always dream of games like this."

With Adrian Mutu still pondering the €17.2 million ($25.4 million) he's been ordered to pay Chelsea, Jovetic has become Fiorentina's most reliable playmaker.

Jovetic converted a penalty in a 1-0 win over Livorno on Saturday for his third goal in this season's Serie A, and the Montenegro international's score against Sporting Lisbon in August earned Fiorentina a spot in Europe's top club competition.

"He's got potential and quality," said Liverpool manager Rafa Benitez, who wasn't interested in debating if Jovetic's first goal was slightly offside. "We played a bad game and we don't have any excuses. Nobody played in the first half.

"Offside is the best rule in football. If a player is offside but is not involved, it's very difficult for the defender to interpret," Benitez added.

Fiorentina and Liverpool are tied in Group E with three points each. Lyon, which beat Debrecen 4-0 in Tuesday's other group match, leads with a perfect six points.

Liverpool faces Chelsea in the Premier League on Sunday.