Premier League
Liverpool0West Brom0

Liverpool 0-0 West Bromwich Albion

Roberto Firmino
Roberto Firmino - and the rest of Liverpool's attackers - were foiled by a well-drilled West Brom

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp said his side could not complain after failing to unpick a stubborn West Brom's defence in a frustrating stalemate at Anfield.

"That was not our best game tonight but I think we had enough chances to win," said the German.

"We didn't use them and we have to accept the result."

Roberto Firmino screwed a side-foot finish narrowly wide before Trent Alexander-Arnold's cross eluded Mohamed Salah in the first half.

The Baggies came just as close before the interval, however, with Hal Robson-Kanu's measured curling shot from distance flicking the bar.

Liverpool pressed further forward in the second with Salah mis-timing a header with the net gaping.

Liverpool v West Brom heat map
Liverpool's heat map (left) shows how they were blocked from making inroads into the West Brom penalty box by the visitor's tactics of sitting deep and defending their area

Substitute Dominic Solanke, who added another attacking focal point off the bench for the hosts, had a goal disallowed for handball and a shot cleared off the line in the final 10 minutes as West Brom's defence remained unbreached.

It was a worryingly familiar feeling at the full-time whistle for the Reds after Everton's rearguard action earned a point on Sunday, and Manchester United and Burnley deployed similar tactics with similar success earlier this season.

The Reds are behind Tottenham and outside the top four on goal difference. At the opposite end of the table, a hard-earned point takes Alan Pardew's side out of the bottom three.

'Fab Four' reunion falls flat

Jurgen Klopp with Dominic Solanke and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain
Klopp attempted to take the game by the scruff of the neck with a double substitution on 79 minutes

Jurgen Klopp refused to entertain what-might-have-beens in the wake of the derby but his team selection was telling.

By picking Salah, Firmino, Sadio Mane and Philippe Coutinho from the start he trained Liverpool's four biggest attacking threats - a prospect the Toffees had been spared - on the West Brom defence.

The full weight of the hosts' attacking quality stressed and strained the West Brom rearguard but ultimately could not force a breakthrough.

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Liverpool have to do better - Klopp

Frustratingly for a team that had 71% of possession, the Reds often posed most threat when West Brom were on the ball in the first half.

One jet-heeled counter attack, sprung from a West Brom corner, floundered on Mane's heavy touch as the Baggies found themselves out of position, while another culminated in Alexander-Arnold's cross just away from Salah's stretching boot.

Solanke and Oxlade-Chamberlain added energy and guile off the bench late on, but the relief around Anfield when the former bundled into the net in the 82nd minute proved short-lived as referee Paul Tierney rightly blew up for an accidental handball.

Pardew starts to turn the tanker

Philippe Coutinho and Claudio Yacob
Claudio Yacob (right) typified West Brom's controlled discipline

West Brom have conceded only two more goals than Liverpool in the Premier League, but scored 22 less than the hosts.

Pardew, only three matches into his reign at the Hawthorns, has promised more ambition in attack to right that lop-sided statistic.

But this match, following defeat by bottom side Swansea at the weekend, was not the one to start implementing that longer-term vision.

Instead, despite James McClean and Robson-Kanu's initial eagerness to support to lone frontman Salomon Rondon, it owed more to the qualities instilled by Pardew's predecessor Tony Pulis.

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Pardew thrilled with 'excellent' result

For the most part, McClean and Robson-Kanu tucked back to shore up a bank of five men in front of the defence.

That flexible formation gummed up Liverpool's fluid attack, without entirely blunting West Brom's threat going forward.

A string of swirling Grzegorz Krychowiak deliveries into the Liverpool box after the break caused Loris Karius, in the Liverpool goal for Simon Mignolet, some real discomfort.

With the late pressure piling on and a visit from Manchester United to come however, the visitors gladly took the point.

Man of the match - Trent Alexander-Arnold

Trent Alexander-Arnold
On a deflating night for Liverpool, 19-year-old full-back provided a bright point with excellent delivery from the right and defensive diligence

West Brom's winless run reached record levels - match stats

  • This was just the fifth time Liverpool have failed to score in a Premier League home game under Jurgen Klopp - they had scored at least once in 38 of their previous 42.
  • The Reds are unbeaten in their last eight games in the Premier League (winning five and drawing thee); their longest run without defeat in the competition since November 2016 (11 games).
  • However, Klopp's side have drawn five of their last seven games at Anfield in the Premier League (winning two), including each of the last three.
  • West Brom have not won any of their last 16 games in all competitions (drawing eight and losing eight); the longest winless run in the club's history.
  • Similarly, the Baggies are winless in 15 games in the Premier League - their only longer such run in the competition came between February 2006 and August 2008 (16 games).
  • Fourteen points is West Brom's worst haul after 17 games of a Premier League season since 2008-09 (12 points), when they were relegated after a 20th-place finish.

'You need a bit of luck' - match quotes

Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp on Solanke's disallowed goal: It is for sure chest and then I am not sure if handball. We cannot take the decision back so all good, it is like this.

"First half we were a little bit stiff, the passing and movement was not so good but even then we had two or three chances. The second half we changed the system two or three times.

"We can do better and we have to do better but on a night like this when you are not at your best you need a bit of luck."

West Brom boss Alan Pardew: "We were so disappointed to lose at Swansea, we didn't think we deserved to, but you have to earn your right and we were excellent in all aspects of our defending today.

"We are growing with defensive confidence. It is looking a little bit brighter tonight."

What's next?

Liverpool travel to Bournemouth on Sunday with West Brom at home to Manchester United on the same afternoon. 

Line-ups

Liverpool

  • 1Karius
  • 66Alexander-ArnoldSubstituted forGomezat 80'minutes
  • 6Lovren
  • 17Klavan
  • 26Robertson
  • 19ManéSubstituted forSolankeat 76'minutes
  • 5WijnaldumSubstituted forOxlade-Chamberlainat 76'minutes
  • 23CanBooked at 68mins
  • 10Coutinho
  • 9Roberto Firmino
  • 11Salah

Substitutes

  • 7Milner
  • 12Gomez
  • 14Henderson
  • 21Oxlade-Chamberlain
  • 22Mignolet
  • 28Ings
  • 29Solanke

West Brom

  • 1Foster
  • 2Nyom
  • 26Hegazi
  • 6Evans
  • 3Gibbs
  • 4Robson-KanuSubstituted forRodriguezat 71'minutes
  • 8Livermore
  • 5Yacob
  • 20KrychowiakSubstituted forBruntat 79'minutes
  • 14McClean
  • 9Rondón

Substitutes

  • 11Brunt
  • 13Myhill
  • 17Burke
  • 19Rodriguez
  • 23McAuley
  • 28Field
  • 64Ferguson
Referee:
Paul Tierney
Attendance:
53,243

Match Stats

Home TeamLiverpoolAway TeamWest Brom
Possession
Home70%
Away30%
Shots
Home14
Away6
Shots on Target
Home5
Away1
Corners
Home5
Away7
Fouls
Home16
Away6

Live Text

Match ends, Liverpool 0, West Bromwich Albion 0.

Full Time

Second Half ends, Liverpool 0, West Bromwich Albion 0.

Corner, Liverpool. Conceded by Ahmed Hegazi.

Foul by Dejan Lovren (Liverpool).

Salomón Rondón (West Bromwich Albion) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Booking

Sam Field (West Bromwich Albion) is shown the yellow card.

Foul by Roberto Firmino (Liverpool).

Claudio Yacob (West Bromwich Albion) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Emre Can (Liverpool).

Salomón Rondón (West Bromwich Albion) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Attempt saved. Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain (Liverpool) right footed shot from the left side of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Dominic Solanke.

Offside, West Bromwich Albion. Ben Foster tries a through ball, but James McClean is caught offside.

Attempt blocked. Dominic Solanke (Liverpool) right footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked.

Attempt missed. Chris Brunt (West Bromwich Albion) left footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the left. Assisted by Jake Livermore.

Hand ball by Dominic Solanke (Liverpool).

Corner, Liverpool. Conceded by Jay Rodriguez.

Substitution

Substitution, Liverpool. Joseph Gomez replaces Trent Alexander-Arnold.

Substitution

Substitution, West Bromwich Albion. Chris Brunt replaces Grzegorz Krychowiak.

Dangerous play by Mohamed Salah (Liverpool).

Jonny Evans (West Bromwich Albion) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Substitution

Substitution, Liverpool. Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain replaces Georginio Wijnaldum.

Substitution

Substitution, Liverpool. Dominic Solanke replaces Sadio Mané.

Foul by Sadio Mané (Liverpool).

Jake Livermore (West Bromwich Albion) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Mohamed Salah (Liverpool) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Jake Livermore (West Bromwich Albion).

Substitution

Substitution, West Bromwich Albion. Jay Rodriguez replaces Hal Robson-Kanu.

Corner, West Bromwich Albion. Conceded by Ragnar Klavan.

Loris Karius (Liverpool) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Hal Robson-Kanu (West Bromwich Albion).

Booking

Emre Can (Liverpool) is shown the yellow card.

Foul by Emre Can (Liverpool).

Hal Robson-Kanu (West Bromwich Albion) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Dejan Lovren (Liverpool).

Salomón Rondón (West Bromwich Albion) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Corner, Liverpool. Conceded by Allan Nyom.

Attempt blocked. Sadio Mané (Liverpool) right footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Emre Can.

Attempt blocked. Georginio Wijnaldum (Liverpool) right footed shot from very close range is blocked.

Attempt saved. Philippe Coutinho (Liverpool) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom left corner.

Sadio Mané (Liverpool) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

goal

As It Stood

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Man City17161052114149
2Man Utd17122337112638
3Chelsea17112431141735
4Tottenham1794430141631
5Liverpool1787234201431
6Burnley179441612431
7Arsenal1793530201030
8Leicester177552723426
9Watford176472629-322
10Everton176472129-822
11Southampton174671723-618
12Huddersfield175391229-1718
13Brighton174581423-917
14Bournemouth174491520-516
15Stoke174491936-1716
16Newcastle1743101626-1015
17West Brom172871222-1014
18Crystal Palace173591228-1614
19West Ham173591432-1814
20Swansea173311922-1312
View full Premier League table

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