SHELLSHOCKED Chelsea were denied victory in controversial fashion as Luis Suarez struck at the death to snatch a point for Liverpool at Anfield.
Suarez headed home in the dying seconds but was fortunate to still be on the field after appearing to bite Blues defender Branislav Ivanonvic in the second-half.
It will doubtless be the Uruguayan's last impact for Liverpool for some time as retrospective action from the FA will surely result in a lengthy ban for the volatile forward.
The incident was missed by referee Kevin Friend but was captured by television cameras.
Most concerning for the visitors, is the potential impact on Chelsea's quest for Champions League qualification, as they are now just a point ahead of Spurs in fourth, with a tough run-in ahead.
Chelsea were without Ashley Cole and Gary Cahill, with both said by interim boss Rafael Benitez to be back in training on Friday.
Also out was John Terry, relegated to the bench following his brace at Fulham on Tuesday night.
The game was preceded by a minute's appreciation following the death this week of Anne Williams, the Hillsborough justice campaigner whose own son was among the 96 killed at the 1989 disaster. It was a gesture respected and supported by fans in all corners of the ground.
A tetchy opening stage saw chances at both ends, Glen Johnson for the Reds and Ramires for the Blues, who both could have opened the scoring.
Chelsea did manage the feat on 25 minutes. A Juan Mata corner hanging delicately in the air for, of all people, Oscar (pictured) to head past Pepe Reina.
Blues started to look comfortable: and the home fans displayed more and more restlessness at Liverpool's failure to make inroads.
There was, however, one real opportunity for them five minutes before the break: Petr Cech saving a Suarez thunderbolt at close quarters.
Chelsea emerged from the interval looking sleepy – at least to start.
Daniel Sturridge, on for Philippe Countinho, lashed a belter of a ball against Cech's post.
Liverpool kept up their pressure, and Chelsea their slumbers, as the equaliser materialised.
Stewart Downing chipped to Suarez from the Reds right, the Uruguayan passing it on for Sturridge to toe-poke home.
Suarez lived up to his reputation for being involved in everything, giving away a penalty at the other end moments later.
A yellow card was issued – more perhaps for the dissent that followed than the arms-aloft punch that resulted in the spot-kick.
Eden Hazard stepped up, and nonchalantly slotted the ball past Reina with a minimal run-up.
The game rose to a bad tempered climax as it reached its conclusions – and one has to wonder what part Suarez's teeth played in that.
At one stage late on, and with Ryan Betrand lying prone on the pitch, both teams got stuck into what threatened to be an all-out brawl until Blues captain Cech steamed into tear away his players.
Then came the added six minutes – and that goal from a man who will dominate tomorrow's back pages.
For a day that began with talk of rightful justice off the pitch, it was something that felt in scant supply on it.
BLUES: Cech, Azpilicueta, Ivanovic, Luiz, Bertrand, Ramires, Mikel, Mata (Lampard 90), Oscar (Moses 82), Hazard (Benayoun 78), Torres.
Subs not used: Turnbull, Ferreira, Terry, Ba