Terry Wills looks back at the Albion’s week.
There’s a popular theatrical musical, The Little Shop of Horrors, that always proves popular when on tour.
Judging by the comments of Roy Hodgson, the players themselves, and everyone who paid out good money to see the Baggies performance (did I say performance?), the 3-0 hammering at Swansea could be best described as the Baggies Display of Horror”.
Barely a redeeming feature. A defence that didn’t defend, a midfield that didn’t create and a forward duo of Peter Odemwingie and Shane Long that barely created a genuine threat of worrying the Swans’ defence. This was opposed to a Welsh side who must have found it difficult to believe they were hosting a Greed League outfit who seemed determined to gift wrap them both their first goals and win of the season.
In a nutshell, not only can I condemn the team’s inability to cause them problems but as a result of a minimum number of Baggies supporters ( in name only) chanting at the deaths of the four Welsh miners, the genuine fans were ostracised even before the kick-off. It was an afternoon to forget, one which left West Bromwich Albion propping up the table and the possibility, no probability, that without a massive improvement it WILL be a long hard season.
So to the ‘Carling Cup’ at Goodison. A much changed line-up gave fringe players the opportunity to show their worth and DEFINITELY a 100% improvement in performance but sadly, not in the result.
Both teams missed chances but if Albion had taken advantage early on their name could have been in the hat for Saturday’s next round draw.
A second half-penalty from Chris Brunt and that was a distinct possibility, but with just one minute of normal time remaining came the equaliser and almost predictably in extra-time a rare, very rare, goal from Phil Neville saw Baggies return home down and out.
Encouraging was the promise of Jones and McCauley. Olsson picked up a knock and may be missing from Saturday’s vital game against Fulham, and if so it will be interesting to see who may be making their first senior Hawthorns appearance.
In fact, who may not be available due to illness could be the key factor in whether the Baggies manage to gather a much needed win against fellow strugglers, .and that is far more important than losing a Carling Cup game – the thinking and philosophy now being adopted by the majority of ‘Greed League teams.
A victory and this week will be forgotten, but should we fail, another defeat would certainly be a morale sapping setback.
Come on you Baggies!