Wolverhampton: Having advanced in both domestic cup competitions in the past week, Liverpool got their Premier League campaign back on track with a 3-0 win at Wolverhampton Wanderers on Tuesday.
The first half was devoid of opportunities, but the second sparked into life. Out-of-form striker Andy Carroll scored his first league goal since October 29, Craig Bellamy added another in the 61st and Dirk Kuyt wrapped up the scoring in the 78th as Liverpool had just their second win in the past seven league matches.
"It was a very professional, high-quality performance," Liverpool manager Kenny Dalglish said. "It was great for Andy to score a goal. Craig scored a fantastic goal, as did Dirk."
A classy Liverpool display piled more misery on Wolves as their run without a win in the Premier League stretched to nine games.
Liverpool are now only four points behind Chelsea in the final qualifying spot for the Champions League. Wolves stay next-to-last.
Liverpool reached the League Cup final by knocking out Manchester City last Wednesday and beat Manchester United to advance to the fifth round of the FA Cup on Sunday.
Liverpool named an interesting line-up, with Steven Gerrard not even making the bench, allowing Jay Spearing to come into the starting XI. Wolves were boosted by the news that Arsenal loan star Emmanuel Frimpong was back in the line-up following his facial injury against Aston Villa.
In just the fourth minute the visitors were unlucky not to take the lead when Kuyt somehow spurned a one on one opportunity. Bellamy crossed for Carroll, who nodded down for the on-rushing Dutchman, but he miss-controlled the ball when he really should have scored.
It was a disjointed start from Wolves but on the quarter of an hour mark they had a great chance through topscorer Steven Fletcher to take the lead. Frimpong retained possession in midfield before spraying out to Kevin Foley who delivered a near post cross that found Fletcher, though the striker could not get enough power on his glancing volley.
Liverpool once more had a great chance as Wayne Hennessey made a superb reaction save from a Daniel Agger header. From a Bellamy corner the Dane rose highest but was thwarted by the Welsh keeper.
Michael Kightly flashed a powerful volley past the post in a rare moment of excitement in a drab first half. It was nice build-up play from Wolves and Kightly played a smart one-two with Fletcher before volleying first-time from the edge of the area, but the sides remained level going into the break.
In the 53rd minute Liverpool took the lead as Carroll celebrated his one-year anniversary since switching to Merseyside with a goal. The visitors deserved to take the lead after Charlie Adam whipped in a cross to the back post, which the striker poked past Hennessey after outmuscling Christophe Berra.
Liverpool doubled their advantage through Bellamy in the 61st minute as he was gifted a free run on goal by a lacklustre home defence. The Welshman received the ball just inside his own half before running unchallenged into the area and curling past Hennessey, with the Wolves stopper also questionable in his attempts to save the ball.
Dalglish's men secured the points in the 78th minute as Kuyt ended his long run without a Premier League goal as he slid the ball into the far corner, following a fabulous run from Adam.
After the Dutchman’s goal the game was all but over and Liverpool comfortably played out the final 10 minutes with ease. The Wolves fans, meanwhile, were furious with their side's display as they met the final whistle with boos.
Liverpool provisionally climbed above Arsenal into fifth place, ahead of the Gunners' match against Bolton on Wednesday.