Terry Wills looks back on a (mainly) good week at the Hawthorns.
So that’s it-isn’t it? Although in theory, Albion aren’t mathematically safe, it would take the miracle of miracles to see them lining up against Wolves in the Nationwide next season. Unless of course, the hapless Old Gold and Black can pull off an even greater miracle!
Two games; Blackburn beaten 3-0 (an own goal plus one apiece from Antoine Fortune, and Liam Ridgwell) gave what on paper appears to have been a comfortable victory. It was anything but, despite the opening 15 minutes when Albion totally dominated, but after that it was Rovers that must have left feeling it wasn’t to be their day. Indeed, if it hadn’t been for a fantastic double save from Ben Foster they could have equalised and possibly gone on to gain a deserved result. What was pleasing was the display from Graham Dorrans. Given a rare start he looked more like his old self – more please, Graham.
So, an expected win followed by (for me) the anticipated defeat at Maine Road (or whatever the correct title of Manchester City’s new stadium might be). With Roy Hodgson, pre match, stressing he’d be making changes, juggling different players and formations, plus injuries to Chris Brunt, Liam Ridgewell and Jerome Thomas, it was always going to be difficult, if not impossible, to get anything against a team who had only dropped one home point all season. And so it proved, with a 4-0 defeat that, based on the home side’s authority, could have been even more comprehensive.
Allowing for the superior quality of a City team that has cost an unknown total of millions, Albion gave the impression they were there to indulge in a practice match. After the opening goal, to all intents and purposes the game was over. Poor marking, defensive errors, and a solitary striker, (Shane Long resembled a beached whale waiting for help that never came) I was thankful City didn’t cash in on their superiority.
Looking forward, Queens Park Rangers, manfully battling for survival, will also be a tough nut to crack and unless Albion approach the game in the right manner it could be another difficult Hawthorns Saturday afternoon.
And to finish on news that will delight EVERY Albion supporter – the club’s decision to drop season ticket prices for 2012-13. Well done to Jeremy Peace and the board. At times they’ve received criticism from fans, mainly that they won’t spend enough money to bring new quality players into the club. It’s all subjective of course, but looking at it logically you can’t spend what you ain’t got.
So again well done to the chairman and the directors for this decision – it’s very much appreciated and all we need now is to see Albion beating QPR to round off a good week. Apart from the defeat against Manchester City of course.
Come on you Baggies.