LONDON, AP

Liverpool slumped to its first league defeat of the season on Sunday, surrending a first-half goal to 1-0 at Bolton.

Kevin Davies scored in the 38th minute on a Henrik Pedersen cross, lifting Bolton into third place in the Premier League with nine points from four games. Arsenal and Chelsea lead with a maximum 12 points each.

Liverpool suffered a blow early in the game when Davies backed into Sami Hyypia, injuring the Finnish defender and forcing him out of the game. There were reports his nose had been broken and he had difficulty with the vision in his right eye.

After an early attempt by Liverpool’s Steven Gerrard went wide, Bolton took the lead on Davies’ first goal of the season. He scored after Danish international Pedersen broke free of Gonzalez Josemi on the left and delivered a low cross.

“We’re in third place and we can’t ask for anything more than that,” Davies said. “In the past two seasons we’ve struggled at the start … but this time we’ve got off to a great start and there’s the chance to take this forward.”

In the 82nd, Liverpool midfielder Luis Garcia appeared to even the score, but the lifted pass from Spanish countryman Xabi Alonso was ruled offside.