Praise but back to the bench for stand-ins

Last updated : 02 January 2003 By Martyn Elliott

Acuna, in his first start for some time, looked comfortable in the holding role in midfield, even against supposed superstars Steven Gerrard and Salif Diao, while Kerr’s industrious performance on the right of midfield on his first start nullified the threat posed by John Arne Riise.

After the game Sir Bobby said: "Clarence Acuna was magnificent and Brian Kerr fully appreciated his role on the right.

"Their contribution was immense and by the time they came off we'd forgotten all about the fact that we had five recognised midfielders out."

But unfortunately for both Dyer and Solano are likely to be given immediate returns.