Minutes away from being relegated from the Premier League, Doug Livermores scrambled aim devoted West Bromwich Albion a 1-0 win against Tottenham Hotspur
A sensational last-gasp escape from relegation remains possible for West Brom thanks to Jake Livermore’s stoppage time winner. If other outcomes go in their favour- they need Swansea and Southampton to draw on Tuesday for a start- then victory at Crystal Palace next Sunday could secure their survival.
That outcome seemed utterly implausible when Darren Moore stepped into the vacancy left by the dismissal of Alan Pardew last month but Moore has transformed the team’s lucks, inspiring a operate of three wins and two draws from his five matches at the helm. No wonder the crowd clamoured here for him to be appointed on a permanent basis.
As the clock ticked past 90 minutes West Brom were on course to prolong Moore’s unbeaten record but his team knew anything less than a win would lead to demotion on the spot. So there was an detonation of elation all around the Hawthorns when Livermore forced the ball over Spurs’ line from close range following an almighty scramble after a corner by Matt Phillips.
All around the ground except in the visiting dugout, that is, as Mauricio Pochettino was left to lament the” absence of aspiration” shown by his squad throughout a match from which they seemed to expect a comfy win. No such criticism could be directed at Moore’s side.
Spurs, aiming to consolidate their place in the four largest and retain their notional opportunity of leapfrogging Manchester United into second place, began as if their victory was as inevitable as the hosts’ relegation was supposed to be. They set up camp in West Brom’s half and waited for an opening to present itself, hogged possession but were ponderous. Unable to create early on, Tottenham seemed in need of unwitting assistance from their foes. But, unlike during the majority of members of the campaign, West Brom did not oblige. They defended steadfastly.
Not until the 24 th minute did Spurs even attempt a shot. It was a good one, Victor Wanyama’s curling endeavor from 20 yards forcing Ben Foster to tip over the bar. Danny Rose tried something similar one minute afterwards but sent the ball into the stands.
Kieran Trippier created the first really incisive pass of the game, sliding in Harry Kane on the half-hour. Foster rushed off his line and diverted the striker’s shooting from eight yards behind for a corner. From the set piece Spurs worked the ball to Christian Eriksen, whose cross from the left find Kane. But the striker could not steer a header on target.
West Brom’s rope-a-dope strategy nearly paid off before the breach. Chris Brunt’s long free-kick into the box in the 41 st minute ran all the way to Jay Rodriguez, who dabbed the ball across the face of objective. Toby Alderweireld headed it out for a corner before any home player could pounce. But three minutes later West Brom virtually took the leading from another corner, merely for Ahmed Hegazi to nod broad from six yards.
Spurs were nearly caught out within moments of the resumption after half-time, as Phillips glided down the right and crossed for Salomon Rondon but the striker missed his kick from close range.
West Brom grew bolder as the finale depicted closer.” We knew we had to contain them early on and the pendulum started to swing around the 60 th minute ,” said Moore.” We just had the confidence and faith that we would get a objective .”
As West Brom applied greater pressure Kane became so spooked that he almost slicked a cross into his own net. Hugo Lloris had to make a brilliant save to prevent the England striker from being credited with a objective that he would not have wanted to claim.
The one West Brom craved came in stoppage day, Livermore stabbing the ball into the net from inches out after Lloris parried a close-range header by Craig Dawson. When the final whistle went, players who have been booed off many times this season were acclaimed by the Hawthorns crowd. Fans made it clear they want Moore to remain at the helm for next season no matter the league they play in.
” There’s been some pride restored ,” told Moore.” The feelgood factor is back around the community and club. I feel from the supporting that there is a real good energy in the club again and that’s all anybody are truly want .”
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