Dec 4, 2013, 4:55 PM EDT
Liverpool had this match done and dusted by the fifteenth minute, but Luis Suárez decided to keep heaping misery on poor Norwich all the same. By the 35th minute, the Reds forward had scored a hat trick, his third in as many seasons against the Canaries. In the second half, he added to his tally, picking up yet another goal and notching an assist. The trampled Norwich slide down into 16th, just a point above the drop.
Although the second goal from Suárez wasn’t the sort that drew gasps of astonishment from the crowd, the first and third were absolute beauties. The first goal from the Uruguayan came from a header by Steven Gerrard, which escaped a Norwich player to bounce in front of Suárez. He caught the bounce and smashed his shot in from about 35 yards, sending it looping through the air, over John Ruddy and into the top corner of the net.
The third goal was also pretty fantastic. Picking up a ball from Raheem Sterling, Suárez juggled it on his thigh, flipped it over the head of a hapless Norwich defender, and let his shot rip, this time from about 25 yards out. Ruddy was again unable to do a thing, with the ball flying into the bottom right corner.
Norwich looked utterly defeated by the time Suárez was through, but Chris Hughton‘s halftime talk must’ve revived them just a little. Just after the restart Sebastien Bassong went close with a header, but put it just a bit high. Efforts rather petered out after that, and despite Hughton’s attempt to liven things up with his substitutions, it was Liverpool that were coming the closest, with Ryan Bennett forced to clear a Gerrard header. Then Suárez could have had a fourth on a quick counter, but Sterling elected to go it alone, and found himself relieved of the ball.
Eventually, though, the Uruguayan managed to add to his tally, knocking in his fourth with fifteen minutes left to play. It was yet another from distance, this time off a 25 yard free kick. Ruddy could do nothing as the ball bent around the Norwich wall to end up in the top corner.
Norwich did end up with a consolation prize, however: a goal from Bradley Johnson in the 83rd minute. The cross came in from Nathan Redmond and Johnson was able to get above Daniel Agger to flick on the header. It likely troubled Liverpool very little however — particularly since they managed yet another, in the 88th minute. This time it was Suárez providing the assist, sending the cross in for Sterling, who slotted home on the bounce.
Liverpool: Mignolet, Johnson, Flanagan, Agger, Skrtel, Allen, Gerrard, Henderson (Alberto 69), Sterling, Coutinho, Suárez (Aspas 90)
Subs not used: Jones, Toure, Sakho, Moses, Lucas
Norwich: Ruddy, Martin, R Bennett, Bassong, Olsson, Johnson, Fer (Whittaker 72), Howson, Hoolahan (Murphy 62), Redmond, Elmander (Hooper 69)
Subs not used: Nash, Turner, Garrido, Becchio
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