Match Reports

Match report: Albion claim Anfield point from 2-0 down

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Enock Mwepu and Leandro Trossard on target as Graham Potter's men claim deserved draw.

By Bruce Talbot • 30 October 2021

By Paul Hazlewood
Albion's richly deserved point takes them up to 16 points from ten Premier League games.

Albion came from 2-0 down to pick up a fully deserved point in an Anfield thriller against Liverpool.

Liverpool looked to be in control when goals from Jordan Henderson and Sadio Mane had them 2-0 up inside 24 minutes.

But Yves Bissouma had already hit the post and Albion had other chances before Enock Mwepu halved the deficit just before the break - the Zambian's first Premier League goal.

Albion took the game to Liverpool in the second half and after several near misses it was Leandro Trossard who equalised with his second goal of the season.

By Paul Hazlewood
Belgium international Leo Trossard tucked home smartly to make it 2-2 on the afternoon.

Trossard had a goal disallowed for offside and Adam Lallana had a great chance to score against his former club as Albion offered the greater attacking threat for much of the second period.

The point took Albion’s tally to 16 from ten games, their highest at this stage of a Premier League season and they also became the first side since 2016 to draw at Anfield having been two goals down.

Albion made three changes to the side which had faced another of the league heavyweights Manchester City with Shane Duffy, who was making his 100th Premier League start, Mwepu and Bissouma coming in as Graham Potter opted for a 4-3-1-2 formation with Adam Lallana operating just behind Trossard and Solly March against his former club.

Lallana received a fantastic reception from the home fans at kick-off and Albion nearly made the perfect start. Trossard’s pass beat the offside trap and Solly March was in down the left. With no support, March tried to find the far post with his shot and Alisson pushed it away.

By Paul Hazlewood
Jordan Henderson put the hosts in front after four minutes.

It set the tone for a terrifically entertaining first half. Liverpool struck first in the fourth minute. Mo Salah was the provider on this occasion, picking out Henderson on the edge of the box and the Liverpool captain swept a right foot shot into the top corner. A terrific finish and Liverpool's 44th goal in just 15 games this season.

Albion responded and Bissouma was denied an equaliser by Alisson. The midfielder broke from a melee in the centre circle and his right-foot shot from 20 yards was heading inside the left-hand post until Alisson diverted it onto the upright.

It was end to end stuff. When Bissouma coughed up possession in midfield Liverpool broke at pace and Roberto Firmino lifted a shot over Rob Sanchez and fortunately for Albion over the bar.

But it was 2-0 in the 24th minute. Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, who had just come on for the injured Naby Keita, delivered a fantastic cross from the right which Mane headed home from close range.

At that stage it looked like being a long afternoon for Albion. It nearly got worse when Sanchez tried to play out from under his own bar, Sadio Mane challenged, and the ball flew into the bottom corner.  VAR confirmed that it had gone in off his arm – relief for those in blue and white.

By Paul Hazlewood
Marc Cucurella once again impressed in an Albion shirt.

Albion continued to threaten. Mwepu couldn’t quite get over the ball when he met Marc Cucurella’s cross with his head while Lewis Dunk got in a crucial block to thwart Firmino at the other end.

Then, a couple of minutes before the break, came a moment Liverpool fan Mwepu will never forget as he found space on the right-hand side, looked up and fired the ball beyond Alisson into the top left-hand corner. Cue delirium in the corner of the Anfield Road Stand housing Albion fans.

There was no let-up in the excitement at both ends at the start of the second half.

By Paul Hazlewood
Enock Mwepu's first half strike looped over Alisson Becker in the Liverpool goal.

Salah thought he’d made it 3-1 when he rounded Sanchez to slide the ball home, but the offside flag was raised. Moments later Albion broke, March back-heeled and Lallana found himself 15 yards out with only Alisson to beat in front of the Kop. His effort was hit powerfully enough but straight at the Brazilian and Lallana buried his head in his hands.

Another counter-attack and this time Trossard had time and space but his shot hit Henderson on the back.

But the Belgian went one better in the 66th minute to make it 2-2. Sanchez started the attack with a superb pass to Cucurella on the left. He found Lallana and he slipped in the Belgian who twisted past a defender before planting his shot past Alisson in front of the Kop. A brilliant moment for Trossard and his team – and no more than they deserved.

By Paul Hazlewood
Leo Trossard points to the Albion supporters at the opposite end of Anfield after getting his team back on level terms.

Albion went close again a few moments later when space opened up for Cucurella whose 25-yarder was parried by Alisson before Liverpool cleared. The home fans found their voice but Albion were very much on top and Trossard thought he’d completed the fightback when he rounded Alisson and fired into the empty net, only for the offside flag to cut short the celebrations.

Lallana went off to a warm reception with 14 minutes left but still Albion looked the likelier winners. Mwepu was picked out by Mac Allister’s diagonal in the box but couldn’t turn it back to a teammate and although Liverpool raised themselves late on Sanchez was not seriously tested, a testament to the way Albion had performed.

Albion: Sanchez, Veltman, Duffy, Dunk, Cucurella, March, Mwepu, Bissouma (Mac Allister 60), Moder (Lamptey 67), Lallana (Gross 77), Trossard.

Subs not used: Steele, Webster, Maupay, Locadia, Roberts, Sarmiento.