Two Forward – One Back

Terry Wills on Albion’s last game, and their next one.

It had to happen.

Albion’s winning run against Liverpool (one game!) came to an end as Kenny Dalglish saw his team stroll, and it was a stroll, to a very comfortable 2-0 Hawthorns victory. And in truth the defeat could have been far more decisive if the slick moving Merseyside outfit had capitalised on their overall superiority. Quicker to the ball, decisive, accurate passing, and with an air of confidence running through a side that on this performance will be making a determined challenge for an end of season top four spot and the chance to yet again challenge the rest of  the European top sides.

In truth, like many other Albion fans, I wasn’t unduly surprised despite the fact that the local derby wins against Wolves and the Villa had encouraged an air of confidence.

To sum up (not difficult): The ‘Pool were superior in all departments. From the kick-off Albion looked ill at ease. Slack marking and inaccurate passing gifted the ball to a side that needed little encouragement to stamp their authority, but it must have helped. What did stand out, for me at least, was that Albion showed the Pool far too much respect and apart from a usual 100% effort from Jonas Olsson, plus Ben Foster’s display, no one stood out. (And on the subject that Jerome Thomas was voted Man of the Match, again it’s all about personal opinions, but I’ll just say when the announcement came through, like many around me I had to ask “Why?”)

To sum up again: A poor display and further proof that clubs such as Albion and the rest of the Premier Greed League teams can start a season with just one realistic ambition – whatever it takes to keep out of the bottom three to ensure the Television revenue from Sky and ESPN will enable them to survive for another season.

So two successive wins to be followed by two successive defeats when we take on a revitalised Arsenal at the Emirates on Saturday? I’d love to think that at the final whistle Albion fans will be standing and dancing in the aisles celebrating, as we did last season, a staggering three point haul, or even a solitary point, against a revitalised Arsenal who just happen to have one of the best strikers in the game, namely Robin ian Persie

But who knows?

POSSIBLY they won’t be on top form, Albion will and Roy Hodgson will be telling just how West Bromwich Albion managed to turn form on its head following the Liverpool surrender. As usual it’s wait and see time and in a season that’s throwing up so many ‘staggering results. Will this be another, though? Well, I won’t be holding my breath!

Come on you Baggies.