MATCH REPORT: West Brom 1-1 Liverpool - Toure error hands Baggies point after Sturridge opener

West Brom v Liverpool (1.30pm)

With a minute of this game remaining and Liverpool hoping for something to save their afternoon, Kolo Toure, under no pressure, passed the ball straight in to touch.

For the defender, it had been that kind of afternoon.

Twenty-five minutes earlier, Toure had contributed an equally inept piece of football. On that occasion, the consequences were not just embarrassing but grave, too.

Receiving what admittedly was a rather ill-judged pass from his goalkeeper Simon Mignolet, Toure saw two West Brom players closing in and took the rather unfathomable decision to play the ball straight across his own penalty area towards his right back Jon Flanagan.

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  • Dan Ripley

    Host commentator


...and you can find out if the the Eagles can climb back above West Brom when they travel to Arsenal to complete the day's coverage.

The smart money says no as the title chasing Gunners host Crystal Palace, but you can find out for yourself by following all the action with Sportsmail on the above link. I'll see you there.

From here that is all from me  - all-post match reaction from the Hawthorns will come on the homepage. Now, off to the Emirates!


So Toure's error proves costly, as Liverpool can only pull two points clear of Everton and three of Tottenham in the race for fourth.

The Baggies' point takes them above Crystal Palace into 16th...

FULL-TIME: West Brom 1-1 Liverpool

90+3min: ...Give the ball back to Brunt. Another Baggies star (who will remain anonymous to protect his identity) lofts a cross into the box but it is straight at Mignolet. 


90+2min: Here's a chance for one of them, as Martin Kelly hauls down Anichebe slightly left to the Liverpool goal 30 yards out. (Just don't give it to Brunt, West Brom!)


90+1min: And we are into four added minutes at the Hawthorns. That's enough time for a goal or two in my books.


89min: Jones is back on and as both teams sense a smash n' grab, the support inside the ground is as loud as it's been all afternoon. Will we get a winner though?

Up and over: West Bromwich Albion's Matej Vydra (left) takes a tumble after going for a header against Liverpool's Steven Gerrard

87min: And now West Brom have a man down, as Billy Jones is being treated on the pitch after appearing to twist his ankle. The Baggies are down to 10 men as the defender limps off to the side but he should be okay to continue - just as well because the hosts have used all their subs.


85min: And that's exactly what it has turned into, as Lugano is now booked for clattering into Sturridge after the Liverpool striker poked the ball past the defender.


82min: Not if it turns into a yellow card festival though. Attacks and counter attacks are coming to a halt as Gerrard and Mulumbu are booked for cynical challenges.


79min: Excellent tackle from Foster, who races from his goaline to block Sturridge from inside the box and suddenly we have a stretched game devolving. I'm looking forward to the final 10 minutes...

Sliding in: West Bromwich Albion's Diego Lugano (right) attempts to tackle Uruguayan compatriot Luis Suarez of Liverpool
West Brom substitution

76min: It's a final switch from West Brom, as Matej Vydra departs in favour of Graham Dorrans.

Double Liverpool substitution

74min: Liverpool boss Brendan Rodgers has called for reinforcements, as Joe Allen replaces Coutinho while Jon Flanagan departs in favour of Martin Kelly.


73min: Now it's Liverpool getting frustrated as Suarez is booked for giving some afters back on Yacob with a kick to the back of the ankle.


70min: It's not a goal that Toure has given away, it's momentum too. Suddenly the home fans have woken up, and the Baggies are now the more attacking side.

GOAL! WEST BROM 1-1 Liverpool

67min: Kolo Toure, WHAT ARE YOU DOING?! Receiving a pass from Mignolet, the defender plays a careless , mindless, stupid pass across his own penalty box, and Victor Anichebe can barely believe his luck as he picks it up and blasts low past Mignolet to equalise.

Dejection: Liverpool's Kolo Toure reacts after his horrendous error helped give West Brom an equaliser
Gifted: West Brom substitute Victor Anichebe capitalised on Toure's error to equalise for West Brom

66min: It's on target from Brunt, but his low effort is straight at Mignolet.

From Sportsmail's Ian Ladyman at the Hawthorns:

'I was saying to my colleague Neil Moxley at half time that West Brom needed to start playing like a team in need of points, because that is exactly what they are after yesterdays results.

'They were far too flat in the first half, allowing Liverpool possession and territory. Certainly the home team have been improved this half anf would be level had Mignolet not saved so well from McAuley.

'Liverpool's captain Steven Gerrard remains the games best player, though, and this is a  contest that his team really should go on and win. Its livened up, though.'


65min: And now the Baggies have a set-piece - their most promising one yet as it's central 23 yards from goal. Brunt stands over again - despite his wayward shooting today.

Things are looking up: West Brom's Ben Foster reacts during the second half by poking his tongue out
West Brom substitution

64min: Pepe Mel makes his second Baggies change, and his first tactical one as Saido Berahino is replaced by former Everton striker Victor Anichebe.


63min: Boos from the home crowd as Liam Ridgewell is booked for a blatant pull on the shirt of Sterling to prevent a counter attack.


60min: On the hour, it should be 2-0. Suarez has the West Brom defenders on toast as he leaves Lugano in knots on the edge of the box after controlling a bouncing ball, before dodging past McAuley.

But it puts him off balance for a shot, and Foster is quick out his goal to block the striker's effort.

From Sportsmail's Neil Moxley at the Hawthorns

'Kevin Friend was involved in a lengthy chat with West Brom skipper Chris Brunt and Claudio Yacob. It can only be assumed that comment was passed about Steven Gerrard and his foul on Zoltan Gera as to why the England skipper wasn't booked. The match official was not happy at all with what was said.'

Button it: Referee Kevin Friend lectures to Chris Brunt and Claudio Yacob following a foul by Steven Gerrard on the former

54min: It's taken nearly an hour but we finally have a goalkeeping save, and a fine one at that! A West Brom corner into the centre is powerfully headed towards goal by Gareth McAuley, but Mignolet reacts well to punch clear.


53min: That's better, Brunt! Mulumbu's first time cross towards the back post finds the Baggies skipper whose volley back across goal is blocked behind by John Flanagan.


51min: Ladies and gentleman, pray silence for the worst free-kick in the world as Brunt's cross/shot/kick into space towards the back post flies miles over the crossbar. Baggies fans far from happy and rightly so - that was terrible! 

Get up! West Bromwich Albion's Claudio Yacob (right) gestures towards Liverpool's Luis Suarez

50min: Right, here's a chance for West Brom as Gerrard's clumsy trip on Gera sees the Baggies have a free-kick on the right hand side of the penalty box. Brunt stands over...


47min: And you can hear a pin drop as after cutting inside from the left, Brunt's shot/cross/kick into space sails towards the corner flag and out for a throw in. I'm expecting some tumble weed to roll out on to the pitch at any moment now.

SECOND-HALF: No additional changes as we restart at the Hawthorns
Going down: Liverpool's Steven Gerrard falls after a tackle as Liverpool led West Brom 1-0 at half-time
Half-time match stats

So Liverpool are worthy of their half-time lead, despite not really doing much with the ball in the final third.

They've had enough control of the game to maybe press for more goals, but as we glance at the half-time stats, I just hope we see more shots on target in the second-half. Neither keeper has made a save!

Click here to see even more stats and maps with Sportsmail's brilliant Match Zone.

Sportsmail's Match Zone shows the half-time stats from the Hawthorns
From Sportsmail's Ian Ladyman at the Hawthorns

'This hasn't been a stellar performance from Liverpool so far but they should still be further ahead than they are.

'Brendan Rodgers' team have worked several good opportunities down the flanks but have lacked subtelty with the final pass at times.

'At half time at a subdued Hawthorns, West Brom are still very much in the game and will perhaps be thankful for that.'

HALF-TIME: West Brom 0-1 Liverpool
Hands on deck: West Brom keeper Ben Foster claims the ball from a corner as Liverpool's Kolo Toure (second left) looks on
From Sportsmail's Neil Moxley at the Hawthorns

'It's incredibly subdued here. Very, very quiet. The West Brom fans still aren't quiet sure what to make of Pepe Mel. I expect it to liven up considerably after the interval.'

There will be two added minutes to end the half.


43min: That's just about West Brom's best moment of the game so far - and it's still off target. Zoltan Gera pick up possession and from the edge of the box, his shot aimed towards the top corner drifts narrowly wide. Fans that are still awake inside the Hawthorns let out a few gasps but not much more.

West Brom substitution

41min: Big blow for West Brom as Jonas Olsson has started limping and simply cannot continue.

The defender makes way for Diego Lugano.

From Sportsmail's Neil Moxley at the Hawthorns:

'I'm going to sound like a right know-all now. But I thought Olsson was struggling. And he's off. To be replaced by Diego Lugano who, given the run-around he was given at Villa Park, must be relishing the chance to face compatriot Luiz Suarez....'

Down and out: West Brom's Jonas Olsson had to limp off injured shortly before half-time

39min: As Philippe Coutinho fires narrowly wide inside, the loud thud against the advertising hoardings only shows how quiet the crowd is. Iv'e seen more atmosphere at a Sunday League game - come on Baggies fans, 'let's be 'aving ya!'

From Sportsmail's Ian Ladyman at the Hawthorns

'It's always a sign of a good team when goals are created and scored seemingly out of nothing and that is just what happened here at at the Hawthorns.

'So little had happened in 24 minutes of play here that i was beginning to wonder if the game would ever come to life.

'But two passes of real quality have changed everything. The first, from Coutinho inside the West Brom full-back to Sterling, was good enough but the one that followed from Suarez to Sturridge was one that only the Uruguayan could have imagined never mind actually executed.

'Was Sturridge offside? It cerrtainly looked close from the press seats.'

He didn't look offside, Ian. It was fine margins and all that though.

Radar off: Liverpool's Luis Suarez failed to test West Brom keeper Ben Foster from two first half free-kicks

33min: The crowd are about as flat as West Brom's attacks now, with Simon Mignolet having one of the easiest Sunday afternoons of his professional career so far in the Liverpool goal.

Liverpool continue to attack as Sterling's charge through the centre leads to a shot being blocked behind for a corner.

From the resulting set-piece, a ball into the box causes a mad scramble but Foster does well to claim on the ground.

From Sportsmail's Neil Moxley at the Hawthorns

'Luis Suarez is one of those players that Jonas Olsson really struggles with. The big Swede, for some reason, can't get to grips with him at all.

'Although West Brom won this fixture last season, Suarez missed a number of opportunities. In the first meeting between these two sides, Suarez again had a field day.

'He's causing Olsson all manner of problems here.'

Battle for the ball: Liverpool's Philippe Coutinho (right) vies with West Bromwich Albion's Claudio Yacob
From OptaJoe

27min: Now the Reds are up and running, so is there football. They win another free-kick 25 yards out but Foster, staring into the sun, is again not tested by Suarez as the striker fires wide.


24min: My groceries are going to have to wait though! Out of nothing the Reds strike, as Luis Suarez's small chip towards the back post is touched home from a yard out by Daniel Sturridge. I thought he was offside but replays show the England striker timed his run perfectly to score his 50th Premier League goal.

Red alert: Daniel Sturridge taps Liverpool into the lead from close range at West Brom
Point in the right direction: Sturridge shows his appreciation to team-mate Luis Suarez for assisting the opening Liverpool goal

21min: Given Liverpool's form, West Brom will be pleased with the way they have stopped Liverpool's attacks from devolving so far.

It's not doing much for the entertainment though - I'm going to pop out and do my shopping a in a minute the way this is going.


18min: Well that's a sort of shot... I'm willing to label any forward play as an attempt on goal right now.

The ball falls loose for Mulumbu on the edge of the box, but his powerful strike on goal is blocked before the Reds clear. At least the fans have woken up a bit now.


15min: Having brought down Suarez and been warned by the referee following another foul, Yacob's yellow had been coming and is now finally booked after another silly trip on Gerrard. Small fouls are preventing this game from developing any flow at the moment.

One too many: West Brom's Claudio Yacob (second left) was booked following persistent fouling in the early stages of the game, including this challenge on Luis Suarez
From Sportsmail's Neil Moxley at the Hawthorns

'For all the fact that Pepe Mel has come with a brief to entertain, there's a much more solid-looking formation from West Brom today, now they are one place above the relegation zone.

'The midfield axis of Claudio Yacob and Youssouf Mulumbu has been restored. Zoltan Gera is playing off Matej Vydra.

'And, unsurprisingly, Gareth McAuley is playing alongside Jonas Olsson. Senor Mel, it appears, has reined in his attacking instincts for pragmatism. Didn't take long that, did it!'


11min: It's been a patchy start under the Hawthorns sun, which hasn't helped the fans add any atmosphere to this game.

In fairness they have had nothing to shout about as Steven Gerrard's clumsy challenge brings down Youssouf Mulumbu in the middle of the park. We are still waiting for either keeper to be called into action.


8min: The odds are against Ben Foster in the West Brom goal as he faces a Luis Suarez free-kick with the sun in his eyes, but luckily for the Baggies the wall does its job to block the Uruguayan's shot to concede a corner - which is wasted by the Reds.


6min: Well, Raheem Sterling is the first to start showing some Liverpool influence, but the winger is cut down by Chris Brunt before he can charge down the flank.

Liverpool now have a free-kick 25 yards from goal after Claudio Yacob hauls down Suarez. Not a wise foul to concede.

Hot under the collar, Roy? England boss Roy Hodgson watches the action at the Hawthorns

3min: Pepe Mel's last minute decision to play Brunt and friends instead of the mascots is paying off so far, with the Baggies doing most of the pressing in the early stages.

Liverpool haven't settled yet as they try to adjust to the greasy pitch which took a hammering from yesterday's rain.


Remember to get the most out of Sportsmail's live coverage by following with our brilliant Match Zone.

It features the full line-ups, formations, key match stats as well as a player comparison tool.

In addition there are heat zones for EVERY player as well as a detailed map of all the goals as they go in. Check it out on the above link.


As the Sky cameras cut to the tunnel and show Steven Gerrard and Co lining up against a load of West Brom mascots, I was fearing a 'men against boys' clash at the Hawthorns. 

Skipper Chris Brunt soon shows up though with his Baggies team-mates and hopefully they will at least give the Reds a decent match as the teams make their way out on to the sun bathed pitch to Faithless's 'Insomnia'... that's before it's quickly replaced by the Premier League theme.

Poor from the WBA stadium announcer - play the rest of the track!

Men against boys: Liverpool's Steven Gerrard stands alongside West Brom mascots in the Hawthorns tunnel
Liverpool players warm up at the Hawthorns

You can't blame the Liverpool lads for having a few smiles on their faces following their 4-0 Merseyside derby victory over Everton, and they certainly look up for securing another three points as they go through their pre-match warm up at West Brom. 

Game for a laugh: Luis Suarez of Liverpool (left) laughs during the warm up alongside team-mates Luis Alberto, Iago Aspas, Martin Kelly and Joe Allen

The Reds are in prime position to qualify for next season's Champions League through the league route, but off field politics have seen them gang up with Chelsea and Arsenal.

The trio are set to challenge Manchester City's right to play in the Champions League next term, using small print from the financial fair play ruling. Click on the above link to read more.

From OptaJoe
PLAYER WATCH: Luis Suarez (Liverpool)

I wouldn't be surprised if the West Brom defence have had a few sleepless nights recently, as Luis Suarez tore them apart in this season's reverse fixture at Anfield.

The Uruguay striker scored a hat-trick, and as our heat zone from the game suggests, was impossible to mark in the Reds' 4-1 win. Can they at least keep him quiet today?

Click here for more match stats and heat maps with Sportsmail's brilliant Match Zone.

Sportsmail's Match Zone shows how Luis Suarez ran West Brom ragged back in October

Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers names the same side which won the midweek Merseyside derby as he seeks to strengthen the Reds' grip on fourth place at West Brom.

Albion boss Pepe Mel makes five changes from the 4-3 defeat to Aston Villa with Billy Jones and Gareth McAuley coming into the back four.

Zoltan Gera, Saido Berahino and Matej Vydra are the other players brought into the team.

Hawthorns clash of international importance

Well look who's here today. Current England boss Roy Hodgson has already arrived for the Hawthorns battle, as he prepares to watch the two previous sides he has managed go head-to-head.

Hodgson was more of a success at West Brom, but I gather he will be keeping a close eye on Liverpool's Jordan Henderson who is a candidate to feature in England's World Cup squad this summer.

Welcome back, Roy: Hodgson signs an autograph for a fan after arriving at the Hawthorns

The clash at the Hawthorns is the first of today's Premier League action, with Arsenal's home clash against Crystal Palace to follow later in the day.

You can follow all the pre-match build up, team news and match action from the Emirates Stadium by clicking on this page here - it's where we will be going straight after West Brom v Liverpool.

Full line-ups from the Hawthorns

West Brom: Foster, Billy Jones, McAuley, Olsson, Ridgewell, Gera, Mulumbu, Yacob, Brunt, Vydra, Berahino. Subs: Reid, Sinclair, Myhill, Lugano, Anichebe, Dorrans, Amalfitano.

Liverpool: Mignolet, Flanagan, Skrtel, Toure, Cissokho, Coutinho, Gerrard, Henderson, Sterling, Suarez, Sturridge. Subs: Brad Jones, Alberto, Aspas, Moses, Allen, Ibe, Kelly.

Referee: Kevin Friend (Leicestershire)

It seems Liverpool plan everything down to the last detail...

...well that's the impression I get from looking at the way the shirts are placed in the dressing room.

Luis Suarez and Steven Gerrard simply discuss when the Reds skipper plays his 'Hollywood pass', while I guess Luis Alberto just looks on into space and nods.

From Sportsmail's Ian Ladyman at the Hawthorns
West Brom starting XI

Foster, Jones, McAuley, Olsson, Ridgewell, Yacob, Mulumbu, Gera, Berahino, Vydra, Brunt.

Liverpool starting XI

Mignolet, Flanagan, Cissokho, Toure, Skrtel, Gerrard, Henderson, Sterling, Coutinho, Suarez, Sturridge.

Good afternoon, all

The beauty of this season's Premier League is that unless your side is above Newcastle and Southampton and challenging for Europe, the chances are you're getting rather worried about a relegation scrap.

So there is plenty to play for and his afternoon's action focuses on both ends of the table and we begin with West Brom v Liverpool. Team news coming soon...