Liverpool's 100% home record in the 2020-21 Premier League came to an end after West Bromwich Albion held the defending champions to a 1-1 draw at Anfield. Semi Ajayi cancelled out Sadio Mane's early opener with a headed effort in the 82nd minute as Sam Allardyce picked up another huge result at Anfield.
Despite having 79% possession and managing 17 shots in total, Liverpool failed to beat the Baggies again, with the visitors weathering a late storm to force a share of the spoils. Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp must also have been frustrated to see Joel Matip go off at the hour mark with an injury, as his side is already running short of options in defence.
Although the draw keeps the champions at the top of the table, Liverpool squandered the chance to extend their lead after watching some of their close rivals drop points on the previous day.
On that note, here are the player ratings for Liverpool:
Alisson - 7/10
Alisson was virtually untested in the opening stanza. However, in a hectic second half, the Liverpool number one pulled off an incredible save to deny Karlan Grant in a one-on-one situation before conceding the equalising goal.
Trent Alexander-Arnold - 6/10
Trent Alexander-Arnold was thoroughly involved in Liverpool's attacking spells but lacked the end product once again. His assist-record now stands at a meagre two in 13 league games this season.
Joel Matip - 7/10
Joel Matip assisted Sadio Mane with a brilliant over-the-top pass and held his position well. However, the Cameroonian was taken off at the hour mark due to an injury, deepening Klopp's defensive worries.
Fabinho - 7/10
Fabinho held his ground well when the visitors tried to amp up the pressure in the second half, finishing the match with nine defensive aerial duels, which was more than that of anyone else on the pitch.
Andrew Robertson - 6.5/10
Andrew Robertson provided some good crosses early on, including the one to set up Mohamed Salah just minutes into the match, but faded as the match progressed.
Curtis Jones - 6/10
Curtis Jones' talent is undeniable, but he is still rough around the edges. He lacked decision-making skills and looked nervous on the ball in counter-attacking situations, holding on to it for too long, which caused a few promising breaks to fizzle out.
Jordan Henderson - 7/10
Jordan Henderson was arguably the best player for Liverpool against West Bromwich Albion. The Reds captain was key in ball progression, distributing passes all across the field. In fact, he laid the most passes in the game with 141, almost twice as many as the next, while completing 91% of them.
Georginio Wijnaldum - 6.5/10
Georginio Wijnaldum was good in both boxes, winning eight defensive duels, while he also laid three key passes, the most after only Alexander-Arnold' (four).
Mohamed Salah - 6/10
Mohamed Salah came close to breaking the deadlock for Liverpool after only five minutes but failed to connect with Robertson's pass. After that instance, he never really got an opportunity despite Liverpool's relentless press.
Roberto Firmino - 7/10
Roberto Firmino did not score on the night, but his switching of flanks and crosses inside the area were a source of constant threat for West Bromwich Albion.
Sadio Mane - 8/10
Sadio Mane put Liverpool in front with a well-taken goal from close range, bringing his tally up to six for the season. After going eight games without one, he has now scored twice in a row. However, given the number of chances he received, the Senegalese ace should have easily had a hat-trick.
Ratings of Liverpool Substitutes
Rhys Williams - 7/10
Rhys Williams replaced the injured Joel Matip and held his ground well, making two clearances in the match.
Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain - 5/10
Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain came on for the final ten minutes of the game but barely got a whiff of the ball.
Divock Origi - N/A
It's anyone's guess why Jurgen Klopp subbed Divock Origi so late even when the Reds were struggling to find the winning goal against West Bromwich Albion.Published 28 Dec 2020, 01:16 IST