Albion and Liverpool played out the first draw in the Barclays WSL this season after sharing six goals in a thriller at the Broadfield Stadium.
Acting head coach Amy Merricks looked as if she had guided Albion to a second successive win after goals from Elisabeth Terland, Danielle Carter and Katie Robinson put them 3-1 up after Missy Bo Kearns had put Liverpool in front.
But the visitors got one back through Shanice van de Sanden midway through the second half and Rachel Furness made it 3-3 in stoppage time from close range.
Albion’s game plan to get their wide players on the ball as much as possible was evident after just 30 seconds. Julia Zigiotti’s lofted pass found Robinson and when her cross was half-cleared Terland volleyed over.
The hosts were on the front foot in the early stages but Liverpool took the lead against the run of play after 17 minutes when Kearns turned home Melissa Lawley’s low cross from close range.
Albion regrouped and were level four minutes later with a brilliant goal. Robinson was the creator with a left-wing cross which Terland met with a glancing header past keeper Eartha Cummings and inside the far post.
Albion came again and were in front after 25 minutes when Zigiotti’s powerful shot hit Kearns’ hand and the referee awarded a penalty which Carter stroked into the corner for her third goal of the season.
It got even better on 34 minutes when Robinson’s cross floated over Cumings and nestled in the far corner and Albion led 3-1.
Megan Connolly made her first appearance of the season as a half-time substitute for Geummin Lee and nearly made a dramatic impact after a flowing move gave her space for a shot which was deflected wide.
Another good move ended with Terland mishitting a shot which allowed Cumings to save then Carter played a lovely pass that allowed Robinson to bear down on goal but a combination of Cumings and Gilly Flaherty blocked her shot and from the resultant corner Zigotti’s volley was also deflected just wide.
Albion keeper Meg Walsh had been largely a spectator in the second half but she got a vital touch to push Emma Koivisto’s shot round the post in the 72nd minute.
That near miss encouraged Liverpool and Walsh made another great stop three minutes later when she dived at Lawley’s feet to smother her effort. But the visitors recycled possession quickly and when Koivisto hooked the ball back from the line substitute van de Sanden nodded in from a yard to make it 3-2.
The momentum was now with Liverpool. Another of their subs Furness forced Walsh into a low save before Robinson broke down the right but Terland steered her cross wide.
The referee somehow found six minutes of stoppage time and Albion hearts were in mouths when Taylor Hinds’ chip beat Walsh but came back off the bar and Furness volleyed the rebound over.
But Furness made no mistake moments later when Rhiannon Roberts picked her out with a cross and the midfielder buried her close-range header past Walsh to make it 3-3.
Liverpool pressed for a winner but that would have been harsh on Albion, who will be disappointed not to have hung on.
Albion: Walsh, Green, Williams, Kullberg, Sarri, Zigiotti, Lee (Connolly 45), Pattinson, Carter (Bance 81), Terland, Robinson.
Subs: Startup, Fox, Park, Jarvis, Ferguson.
Referee: Georgia Hall