McAuley sinks Rodgers’ Reds

It’s not every day a Larne man scores at Anfield against a Liverpool side managed by a native of Carnlough. But that’s exactly what happened on Monday night when West Brom centre-back Gareth McAuley netted a memorable goal to help the Baggies claim a 2-0 Premier League win over Brendan Rodgers’ Reds.

McAuley - a childhood Liverpool fan - put his side one up with nine minutes to go when he gave opposite number Daniel Agger the slip and headed Chris Brunt’s inch-perfect corner past Pepe Reina, with the help of the crossbar.

Rodgers (inset) watched on as his side were left frustrated by the goalkeeping heroics of Ben Foster, who capped a fine display with a 78th-minute penalty save from ‘Pool skipper Steven Gerrard.

Three minutes later 33-year-old McAuley made Liverpool pay when he outjumped everyone else to power home the opener - his second goal of the season. Substitute Romelu Lukaku made sure of the three points, slotting home in the 90th minute.

“It’s always nice to score,” McAuley told Sky Sports. “It’s nice to score here (at Anfield), it’s a club my family support, so it’s a good night for me.”

McAuley started out in the Irish League and had spells at Crusaders and Coleraine, before securing a move to Lincoln City in 2004. From there he switched to Leicester City and then went on to make over 100 appearances for Ipswich Town. He got his move to the top-flight in the summer of 2011, when he was signed by former Hawthorns boss, Roy Hodgson.

Report by John Gillespie | Twitter: @Times_Sport