IT’S a bit early in the year for Carroll singing.

Blackburn 2 Liverpool 3

But much-maligned striker Andy Carroll hit the right note in added time to settle an astonishing match.

His diving header sparked an ecstatic chorus from the travelling Liverpool fans.

However, that rare strike from the big Geordie did not tell half the story of one of the season’s craziest Premier League games.

Maxi Rodriguez scored twice, as did Yakubu but the Blackburn man also missed a penalty.

Liverpool had keeper Alexander Doni sent off and were a bit lucky not to have substitute Brad Jones dismissed too.

The Reds also contrived to blow a two-goal lead, before the 10 men summoned up one final effort to claim the points.

It meant Steve Kean’s Rovers stay lodged in the drop zone after a fourth straight loss.

There was no indication of the drama to come when Liverpool, who had lost six of their previous eight League games, went two up early on thanks to a double from Maxi.

The opener came from great vision by Martin Skrtel as he looked to clear his lines from his own box.

Slovakian centre-back Skrtel took a quick look up and sent a 60-yard ball out to the right into the path of Craig Bellamy.

The speedy Welshman was off down the flank and his delivery was perfect giving Maxi the simplest task of converting at the far post.

Within three minutes the visitors had scored again and the Blackburn defence was all at sea once more. Jonjo Shelvey collected in midfield and kept going forward as Rovers backed off.

Shelvey reached the edge of the penalty area, switched to his right foot and saw his shot pushed out by keeper Paul Robinson.

Striker Carroll met the loose ball and though his effort was blocked, it popped up for Maxi who again netted easily with his left foot at the back post

The chants for manager Kenny Dalglish, who has come in for plenty of criticism, grew louder from the away fans.

Boos rang out around Ewood Park from the home supporters.

It was Liverpool’s to lose but they tried to throw it away when John Flanagan’s awful backpass was seized on by Junior Hoilett.

As the forward went round Doni, the Brazilian keeper took his legs away on 25 minutes. There was no question it was a sending off for Doni — who was deputising for the suspended Pepe Reina — and a penalty to home team Blackburn.

On came Liverpool’s third-choice keeper Brad Jones as sub for Flanagan.

It ended the full-back’s nightmare, he had already collected a yellow card and escaped another for a clumsy foul.

Jones was making his league debut for Liverpool and his first appearance for the club since a Europa League game against Utrecht in December 2010. His first job was to face former Middlesbrough team-mate Yakubu from the spot.

It was a terrible fluffed kick by the usually reliable Yak.

He virtually passed it to the Aussie keeper but Jones still had to go the right way to claim it.

Perhaps he had remembered something from their days on the Tees-side training ground.

Jones pointed to the sky in memory of five-year-old son Luca who tragically died of leukaemia in November.

The embarrassed Yakubu redeemed himself on 36 minutes as he rose unmarked to meet David Dunn’s accurate free-kick.

The striker directed his header into the corner to get Blackburn on the scoresheet.

It was game on — with the Reds a man down and struggling to cope with rejuvenated Rovers.

Carroll could have made life easier for Liverpool just after half-time when he stretched for a diving header at a corner only to direct it wide from four yards.

Boss Dalglish’s reaction was one of a man who thought he should have scored. And he was pulling his hair out when he nearly lost his second keeper of the night and Blackburn got an equaliser.

Keeper Jones attempted to hoof clear but struck Yakubu on the backside with his kick and the ball spun high into the air.

As it came down, Jones tried to catch under the bar but dropped it at the feet of the Yak and pushed the Rovers striker over.

For a moment we wondered if Jones would get a red too but referee Anthony Taylor kept it to a booking. It was true that Yakubu was going away from goal at the time but he would surely have scored once he had turned round.

Yakubu picked himself up to take the penalty and this time made no mistake as he smashed it down the middle on the hour.

What a weird and wonderful game this was.

It would have been in-keeping with the madness had Carroll’s backward header from the edge of the box gone into his own net.

Fortunately for Liverpool, Jones did well to tip it over.

And Carroll had the last laugh with his headed winner.