Luis Suarez hit a superb hat-trick as Liverpool romped to a 4-1 victory over West Brom at Anfield.
The Uruguayan put the home side ahead after just 12 minutes when he nutmegged Jonas Olsson and fired past Boaz Myhill in the West Brom goal.
He then doubled his tally five minutes later after brilliantly heading in Aly Cissokho's cross from 18 yards out, before completing his haul on 55 minutes when he easily headed home Steven Gerrard's wonderful free kick.
James Morrison gave the visitors a glimmer of hope just past the hour when he fired a penalty past Simon Mignolet, which was given for a push on Billy Jones by Cissokho.
Any hopes of a West Brom fightback were dispelled 10 minutes later though, when Daniel Sturridge chipped Myhill from 25 yards to complete the rout.
Initially it appeared the day may have been one of controversy for Suarez as his ninth-minute fall in the area after tussling with Jones resulted in West Brom captain Olsson remonstrating with the Uruguayan.
It is unlikely that provided any additional motivation for Suarez but within minutes the Baggies' Swedish centre-back found himself a mere bystander as he was left trailing in the wake of the striker's brilliance.
Suarez picked up the ball in the inside-right channel and skipped past Claudio Yacob before nutmegging Olsson so perfectly the defender was still turning round as the forward beat Myhill with an angled shot.
If that goal was a product of the South American's nifty footwork his second was more instinctive.
Having laid off the ball to Cissokho he continued his run to meet the on-loan Valencia defender's first-time cross with a bullet header from 18 yards out.
Liverpool should have had the result wrapped up from a well-worked Suarez free-kick to Gerrard in the inside-right channel but when the captain cut the ball back from the byline Martin Skrtel completely fluffed his shot from close range.
Yacob, not having the best of games in midfield, then fouled Sturridge - for once being completely overshadowed by his strike partner - but Suarez's free-kick went just wide.
Jordan Henderson, whose movement and powerful running in behind strikers made a mockery of Sir Alex Ferguson's bizarre criticism of his gait, almost made it three when he curled a shot over after Lucas Leiva, Suarez and
Gerrard had combined on the edge of a congested penalty area.
West Brom's first real chance came in added time before the interval when Youssouf Mulumbu's ball over the top picked out former Liverpool striker Nicolas Anelka, who knocked past the advancing Mignolet only for Skrtel to hack into the Kop before the ball crossed the line.
That would have given the visitors hope and what they needed to do was come out all guns blazing for the second half.
They failed on that count and soon found themselves out of the game.
Sturridge bent a free-kick just off target and Suarez had a shot deflected behind before the Uruguayan completed his hat-trick.
Gerrard swung in a free-kick from the left and the striker jumped to flick a head and divert the ball into the far corner, his fourth hat-trick in Liverpool colours.
Sturridge, who must have already resigned himself to playing second fiddle, crashed a shot against the bar but the damage had already been done.
Even a spot-kick with 25 minutes to go, converted by Morrison after Cissokho had been adjudged by the assistant referee to have fouled Jones, could not alter the outcome as Sturridge's inch-perfect chip restored the three-goal cushion.