Super Suarez proves his worth to purring Dalglish

Liverpool 1 Queens Park Rangers 0: Liverpool's Uruguayan striker answers critics with match-winning display

Anfield

You cannot keep a good man down – not even one with a bit of devil in him. Five days after creating a fresh controversy by earning an FA misconduct charge for an alleged hand gesture at Fulham fans, Luis Suarez stole the headlines for the right reasons yesterday with an outstanding display in this narrow, but richly deserved Liverpool victory.

Suarez scored the only goal after 47 minutes, heading a Charlie Adam cross past Radek Cerny, but would have been the game's dominant figure even without his decisive strike that secured Liverpool a first home success since September and lifted them into sixth place, above Newcastle on goal difference.

Kenny Dalglish had showed reporters on Thursday a DVD package designed to persuade them that the Uruguayan is less sinner than sinned against; here was evidence of a less disputed fact, namely Suarez's ability to illuminate a football field with his presence. A delighted Dalgish said afterwards: "It will be nice headlines tomorrow for him. He scored with a header which doesn't happen too often and played really well."

The Uruguayan, who had not scored in the Premier League since 1 October, was a menace to the QPR defence with not just his ability and inventiveness but also, during a first half of missed opportunities, for his sheer irrepressibility. Liverpool had surrendered an 11-match unbeaten run at Fulham on Monday and began intent on making amends, setting the tone for a display that produced 15 shots on target with three corners inside the first three minutes.

Suarez was at the heart of it and might have had a hat-trick inside the first 15 minutes. After nodding a Stewart Downing cross straight at Radek Cerny, Suarez played a cute one-two with Maxi Rodriguez, a lively accomplice, only to screw his shot wide. Suarez had begun the day as owner of an unwanted Premier League statistic for most shots off target (26) and he added another, flashing a shot from a tight angle that flew between Cerny and the near post but right across the goalline.

Suarez was not the only profligate one – on the half-hour Dirk Kuyt sent Maxi running clear but Cerny got a hand to his sidefooted finish – but before long he was at it again, failing with an attempted lob of the goalkeeper, then lashing the rebound wide.

Rangers have won more games away from Loftus Road than at home but Liverpool's passing and moving had them chasing shadows. "Some of the football we played in the first half was brilliant," purred Dalglish. Still, there remained the question whether they could press home their advantage. The home crowd, mindful of damaging draws here with the other promoted sides, Norwich and Swansea, remained subdued until Suarez – who else? – caused Anfield to explode into noise moments after the restart.

Adam was the instigator, stepping away from Shaun Wright-Phillips on the right flank and crossing into the six-yard box where Luke Young had left Suarez free to bury his header past Cerny.

QPR lost Anton Ferdinand with a hamstring injury and they might have lost more goals too but for the excellence of Cerny, the visitors' third-choice keeper.

The Czech stretched out a long arm to touch a Maxi shot on to the post. Maxi was foiled again by Cerny after breaking free after a pinball exchange with Suarez. "Radek Cerny was fantastic," said Neil Warnock, the visiting manager. "I am really pleased for him. He is a top professional and at 37 never thought he'd play another game in the Premier League."

The ghosts of Liverpool's five previous home draws ensured some late jitters with Danny Gabbidon spurning an opportunity to equalise after 72 minutes, when he turned over from the edge of the six-yard box. That was one of several anxious moments from high balls into the home box.

Liverpool (4-2-3-1): Reina; Johnson, Skrtel, Agger, Enrique; Henderson, Adam; Downing (Shelvey 86), Kuyt, Maxi (Bellamy 78); Suarez.

QPR (4-4-2): Cerny; Young, Ferdinand (Orr 50), Gabbidon, Traore; Wright-Phillips, Barton, Faurlin, Smith (Campbell 66); Mackie (Hill 78), Bothroyd.

Referee: Lee Mason

Man of the match: Suarez (Liverpool)

Sport
Thiago Silva pulls Arjen Robben back to concede a penalty
world cup 2014Brazil 0 Netherlands 3: More misery for hosts as Dutch take third place
Sport
Robin van Persie hands his third-place medal to a supporter
Van Persie gives bronze medal to eccentric fan moments after being handed it by Blatter
News
Ian Thorpe had Rio 2016 in his sights
people
Life and Style
Swimsuit, £245, by Agent Provocateur
fashion

Diving in at the deep end is no excuse for shirking the style stakes

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
scienceScientists have developed a material so dark you can't see it...
News
Monkey business: Serkis is the king of the non-human character performance
peopleFirst Gollum, then King Kong - now the actor is swinging through trees in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
Arts and Entertainment
Blackman: Landscape of children’s literature does not reflect the cultural diversity of young people
booksMalorie Blackman appeals for a better ethnic mix of authors and characters and the illustrator Quentin Blake comes to the rescue
Voices
Mrs Brown's Boy: D'Movie has been a huge commercial success
voicesWhen it comes to national stereotyping, the Irish know it can pay to play up to outsiders' expectations, says DJ Taylor
Arts and Entertainment
Curtain calls: Madani Younis
theatreMadani Younis wants the neighbourhood to follow his work as closely as his audiences do
Life and Style
Douglas McMaster says the food industry is ‘traumatised’
food + drinkSilo in Brighton will have just six staple dishes on the menu every day, including one meat option, one fish, one vegan, and one 'wild card'
Life and Style
Once a month, waistline watcher Suran steps into a 3D body scanner that maps his body shape and records measurements with pinpoint accuracy
techFrom heart rates to happiness, there is little this fast-growing, self-tracking community won't monitor
Sport
Mario Balotelli, Divock Origi, Loic Remy, Wilfried Bony and Karim Benzema
transfersBony, Benzema and the other transfer targets
News
Soft power: Matthew Barzun
peopleThe US Ambassador to London, Matthew Barzun, holds 'jeans and beer' gigs at his official residence. He says it's all part of the job
Sport
Joe Root and James Anderson celebrate their record-beaking partnership
cricketEngland's last-wicket stand against India rewrites the history books
News
Gavin Maxwell in Sandaig with one of his pet otters
peopleWas the otter man the wildlife champion he appeared to be?
News
Rowsell says: 'Wearing wigs is a way of looking normal. I pick a style and colour and stick to it because I don't want to keep wearing different styles'
peopleThe World Champion cyclist Joanna Rowsell on breaking her collarbone, shattering her teeth - and dealing with alopecia
Caption competition
Caption competition
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily World Cup Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Iraq crisis: How Saudi Arabia helped Isis take over the north of the country

How Saudi Arabia helped Isis take over northern Iraq

A speech by an ex-MI6 boss hints at a plan going back over a decade. In some areas, being Shia is akin to being a Jew in Nazi Germany, says Patrick Cockburn
The evolution of Andy Serkis: First Gollum, then King Kong - now the actor is swinging through the trees in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes

The evolution of Andy Serkis

First Gollum, then King Kong - now the actor is swinging through the trees in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
You thought 'Benefits Street' was controversial: Follow-up documentary 'Immigrant Street' has got locals worried

You thought 'Benefits Street' was controversial...

Follow-up documentary 'Immigrant Street' has got locals worried
Refugee children from Central America let down by Washington's high ideals

Refugee children let down by Washington's high ideals

Democrats and Republicans refuse to set aside their differences to cope with the influx of desperate Central Americas, says Rupert Cornwell
Children's books are too white, says Laureate

Children's books are too white, says Laureate

Malorie Blackman appeals for a better ethnic mix of authors and characters and the illustrator Quentin Blake comes to the rescue
Blackest is the new black: Scientists have developed a material so dark that you can't see it...

Blackest is the new black

Scientists have developed a material so dark that you can't see it...
Matthew Barzun: America's diplomatic dude

Matthew Barzun: America's diplomatic dude

The US Ambassador to London holds 'jeans and beer' gigs at his official residence – it's all part of the job, he tells Chris Green
Meet the Quantified Selfers: From heart rates to happiness, there is little this fast-growing, self-tracking community won't monitor

Meet the 'Quantified Selfers'

From heart rates to happiness, there is little this fast-growing, self-tracking community won't monitor
Madani Younis: Five-star reviews are just the opening act for British theatre's first non-white artistic director

Five-star reviews are just the opening act for British theatre's first non-white artistic director

Madani Younis wants the neighbourhood to follow his work as closely as his audiences do
Mrs Brown and her boys: are they having a laugh?

Mrs Brown and her boys: are they having a laugh?

When it comes to national stereotyping, the Irish – among others – know it can pay to play up to outsiders' expectations, says DJ Taylor
Gavin Maxwell's bitter legacy: Was the otter man the wildlife champion he appeared to be?

Otter man Gavin Maxwell's bitter legacy

The aristocrat's eccentric devotion to his pets inspired a generation. But our greatest living nature writer believes his legacy has been quite toxic
Joanna Rowsell: The World Champion cyclist on breaking her collarbone, shattering her teeth - and dealing with alopecia

Joanna Rowsell: 'I wear my wig to look normal'

The World Champion cyclist on breaking her collarbone, shattering her teeth - and dealing with alopecia
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef gives raw ingredients a lift with his quick marinades

Bill Granger's quick and delicious marinades

Our chef's marinades are great for weekend barbecuing, but are also a delicious way of injecting flavour into, and breaking the monotony of, weekday meals
Germany vs Argentina World Cup 2014 preview: Why Brazilians don't love their neighbours Argentina any more

Anyone but Argentina – why Brazilians don’t love their neighbours any more

The hosts will be supporting Germany in today's World Cup final, reports Alex Bellos
The Open 2014: Time again to ask that major question - can Lee Westwood win at last?

The Open 2014

Time again to ask that major question - can Lee Westwood win at last?