Brendan Rodgers earned a much needed win as Raheem Sterling scored in both halves to give Liverpool victory over AFC Bournemouth in the Capital One Cup quarter-final.
Markovic scored in between Sterling’s brace which made it 3-0 to Liverpool. However, the Cherries pulled one back through ex-Everton midfielder Dan Gosling, who scored an impressive five goals in five rounds, but it was not enough as the game finished 3-1 to the Reds.
Eddie Howe made six changes to his side which beat Cardiff 5-3 the previous Saturday. Midfield duo Harry Arter and Andrew Surman were replaced by Gosling and O’Kane whilst 19 year-old England youth defender Baily Cargill stepped in to maintain his record of playing in every round.
Other changes included winger Junior Stanislas in for fan favourite Marc Pugh, Adam Smith for Charlie Daniels and Yann Kermorgant for Brett Pitman.
It was in contrast to the full strength side that Liverpool put out including club legend Steven Gerrard, starlet Raheem Sterling and ex-Bournemouth and Southampton midfielder Adam Lallana, all of whom play internationally for England.
The strength of the Liverpool side gave tremendous respect to a Bournemouth team which sat at the top of the Championship table going into this game. Howe’s decision to make six starting changes to his squad perhaps proved costly as Bournemouth lacked real quality in attacking areas.
It was a poor first half from a Bournemouth perspective. Top goal-scorer Callum Wilson missed a golden opportunity to give the Cherries the lead just inside three minutes, firing his shot just wide after beating two Liverpool players.
Yann Kermorgant also wasted an opportunity to score, blazing his shot over the bar from ten yards.
Liverpool taught Bournemouth a lesson in just how clinical you have to be, as Sterling scored two brilliant goals including a header from a neat passing move and a one-on-one with Cherries captain Tommy Elphick, who suffered a torrid night up against the bright England forward.
Markovic also grabbed a goal for the Reds from an effort just outside the box in a bizarre incident. The Bournemouth players believed the referee had blown for offside, but further reports showed it was someone blowing a whistle in the crowd.
It appeared all over for the Cherries until Dan Gosling pounced into the box and dragged his shot past Liverpool keeper Brad Jones making it 3-1.
The Cherries came alive after that goal and brought on Ryan Fraser to inject some pace into the team.
Not long after, Dan Gosling had another shot on goal which bounced off the bar and Matt Ritchie hit the rebound wide.
Similar to the story back in January when the two sides previously met, the ultimate difference was a Premier League quality attack.
However, Bournemouth would feel on another day they could have won this one.