Top of the match: Zlaton Gera
Flop of the match: Steven Gerrard
Steve Clarke made a perfect start as West Brom manager with the emphatic 3-0 win over Liverpool at Hawthrons on the opening day of new premier league season. Liverpool played with 10-men for the last half an hour after Daniel Agger was sent off for the challenge against Shane Long.
Liverpool seemed to be the better side among the two teams in the first half before Zlaton Gera’s wonderful goal in the 43rd minute. Despite of saving Long’s penalty in the second half, Reina failed to stop Odemwingie’s penalty and Lukaku’s header as Rodgers had a miserable start Liverpool manager.
Only one of the new signings, Claudio Yacob started for the baggies where two new signings with the names of Fabio Borini and Joe Allen were named in the starting line-up for the reds. Joe Allen was positioned to play in the deep of the midfield along with Lucas, whereas Fabio Borini partnered Luis Suarez in the attack.
The match started in the lively fashion and counter attacks were going on both sides. It was Luis Suarez who had the first opportunity to score in the game in the counter-attack. His shot from outside the left corner of the box was saved by West Brom’s keeper, Ben Foster. Few minutes later, Long was fouled near the edge of the box and Reid wasted a free-kick by hitting a long way away from the bar.
In the 22nd minute of the game, Suarez cut inside the penalty box in the left hand side and provided Gerrard with the ball to fire towards the goal. But West Brom’s debutant, Yacob was in the right place to block Gerrard’s shot. 4 minutes later, Borini flicked the ball to Suarez inside the left corner of the penalty box, but Suarez can find only side netting.
Johnson’s clearance in the 43rd minute during the counter attack of baggies, awarded them a corner. It was Reid who took that corner and it was Johnson, once again with a clearance with a header. Johnson’s clearance found Gera and the Hungarian gave the lead for the home side with a perfectly executed half-volley.
Within 15 minutes of the restart, Liverpool were down to 10-men as Daniel Agger was shown the direct red card for his backward challenge against Irish striker, Shane Long inside the penalty box, letting the chance for West Brom to double their penalty. But, Pepe Reina did well in stopping the casually taken effortless penalty by Long. As Agger being sent off, Rodgers took an immediate action by replacing Downing with Carragher, who made 701th appearance for the club yesterday.
Three minutes later, Long made amends as he won another penalty, this time being brought down by Martin Skrtel. But this time it was Odemwingie who took the penalty and his perfectly executed penalty doubled the lead for the home side.
Another brilliant counter attack from baggies came on the 70th minute of the game, where Yacob found Lukaku in the centre of the pitch. The young Belgian striker reacted well to take the ball inside the penalty box. Instead of going for a shot towards the goal, he fed the ball to James Morrison, but the midfielder skied the ball from 12 yards out.
However in the 77th minute, Ridgewell chip was perfectly headed by Lukaku to send it to the nets to triple the lead for the home side. Liverpool was pushing themselves forward to find a consolation goal, but it didn’t happen even after the introduction of unwanted, Andy Carroll and the baggies started their compaign with the emphatic 3-0 win.
GK: Pepe Reina
DF: Glen Johnson
DF: Daniel Agger(Sent off)
DF: Martin Skrtel
DF: Martin Kelly
MF: Joe Allen
MF: Lucas Leiva(Joe Cole ßàAndy carroll)
MF: Steven Gerrard
MF: Stewart Downing(Jamie Carragher)
FW: Fanio Borini
FW: Luis Suarez
West Bromwich Albion:
GK: Ben Foster
DF: Jonas Olsson
DF: Liam Ridgewell
DF: Gareth McAuley
DF: Steven Reid
MF: James Morrison(Chris Brunt)
MF: Youssuf Mulumbu
MF: Claudio Yacob
MF: Zlaton Gera(Marc Fortune)
FW: Peter Odemwinge
FW: Shane Long(Romelu Lukaku)