Feb 2, 2014, 10:29 AM EDT
Daniel Sturridge‘s 50th Premier League goal appeared to be enough to see the Reds through, but Toure’s mistake shocked the Liverpool players and they never recovered to retake control.
The match started with a largely uneventful 20 minutes, as both teams looked to use their right attacking flanks to access the opposition’s attacking third, West Brom through Zoltan Gera and Liverpool through young Raheem Sterling.
Liverpool appeared the brighter of the two squads, but the home side didn’t go without a few half-chances, the best being Youssuf Mulumbu’s 18th-minute shot on target that Steven Gerrard managed to stick out a foot to block.
The breakthrough was inevitable, however, as the trio of Suarez, Sterling, and Sturridge all combined to put Liverpool ahead. Sterling worked the ball to the right edge of the penalty area before finding himself no way through, so he dumped it off to Suarez.
The world-class striker took a moment to collect himself before taking what appeared to be a curling shot as the Uruguayan looked to curl the ball around Ben Foster. It was going wide, but Sturridge was making a run and stayed onsides for the tap-in.
As their early attacking style faded under growing pressure, West Brom fans at the Hawthornes began to get restless with the game ticking on 40 minutes, and they began to voice their concerns about how the team shaped up.
The second half began as the first one had, with West Brom on the back foot but also maintaining a few chances. They earned a corner with a well-worked move on the right flank, and Gareth McAuley came close on the ensuing set-piece with a header, forcing a save from Simon Mignolet.
Liverpool were content to play on the counter, absorbing what little the home side had to offer and making incisive breaks on the other end. Suarez nearly doubled the lead on 59 minutes but Foster stood well to save one-on-one after Suarez had beaten his countryman Diego Lugano.
But would you know it, West Brom would be given life. Just having come on for Saido Berainho, Victor Anichebe latched onto a horrific mistake from Kolo Toure and made no mistake, rifling into the bottom corner past Mignolet, leaving Toure stunned, hands on his head.
It was a shocking mistake, a square pass across the pitch that never reached its intended destination, and left Liverpool searching for answers.
The game exploded open, and the home side became much more incisive and maintained a stronger attacking intent. Yellow cards began to fly as well, as Suarez, Gerrard, Mulumbu, and Lugano were all cautioned by referee Kevin Friend in separate incidents soon after the goal.
By the 85th minute, West Brom were clearly on top, and the Hawthornes rocked with hopes that their side could steal all three points. But it would not be as full time blew, with the sides sharing the spoils.
Liverpool draw within three of Chelsea in fourth place, but they will rue missing their chance to pull even closer. The Baggies’ point gets them off level points with 18th place West Ham and even with Crystal Palace who play next.
West Brom – Anichebe 67′
Liverpool – Sturridge 24′
West Brom – Foster; Jones, McAuley, Olsson (Lugano 41′), Ridgewell; Yacob, Mulumbu, Gera; Berahino (Anichebe 64′), Vydra (Dorrans 75′), Brunt.
Liverpool - Mignolet; Flanagan (Kelly 74′), Cissokho, Toure, Skrtel; Gerrard, Henderson, Sterling, Coutinho (Allen 74′); Suarez, Sturridge.
- Week 8 Preview: Playoff rematches in Seattle, New England; new tests for D.C., New York 0
- Schmid takes needed kick at Open Cup-Champions League hornet’s nest 6
- Weekend off gives Toronto a chance to get Michael Bradley right 2
- Home teams take leads in first legs of Europa League semifinals 0
- Premier League Power Rankings: Two way tussle for top spot – Week 35 0
- Premier League Scenarios: Title Chase, Race for Europe and Relegation 2