PA Sport

West Brom keep flying with win at Wigan

West Brom keep flying with win at Wigan
By Eurosport

11/11/2012 at 04:02Updated 12/11/2012 at 18:51

Premier League, DW Stadium - Wigan Athletic 1 (Kone 44), West Bromwich Albion 2 (Morrison 31, Caldwell o.g. 43)

West Bromwich Albion consolidated fifth place in the Premier League with their first away win of the season, 2-1 at Wigan Athletic.

James Morrison's close-range header and Gary Caldwell's own goal gave the Baggies a commanding lead - and although Arouna Kone pulled one back almost immediately Wigan were unable to conjure an equaliser at the DW Stadium.

West Brom's sixth victory from their opening 11 Premier League games moves them to 20 points - for the pessimistic, halfway to the total traditionally required for safety. However Steve Clarke will set his sights much higher than mere survival after another fine display.

For all their attractive football, Wigan lacked a cutting edge as they failed to record a third successive win, having come into the game on a high.

Wigan fielded the same side that beat Tottenham at White Hart Lane, but Steve Clarke made four changes from the team that defeated Southampton on Monday.

Boaz Myhill deputised for Ben Foster in goal, while James Morrison, Chris Brunt and Romelu Lukaku all came in.

The home side made a strong start, knocking the ball around with authority without troubling Myhill unduly.

The keeper had to parry a Ben Watson shot after good work from the impressive Jean Beausejour, but otherwise Wigan struggled to translate possession into chances.

West Brom, nearly led against the run of play on 24 minutes when James Morrison charged down a Maynor Figueroa clearance and ran through, but Al Al-Habsi - who injured a shoulder in the warm-up - raced out to make a brave interception.

However, the Wigan keeper was rooted to his line when Morrison headed the Baggies in front.

Brunt crossed from the left and Morrison made thumping contact little more than four yards out.

The lead was doubled on 43 minutes, when Caldwell turned a Billy Jones cross into his own net - but Wigan had pulled one back in little more than 60 seconds.

Beausejour drilled in a low cross from the left and Kone met it at the far post where he could hardly miss.

Half-time gave West Brom an opportunity to regroup, and they defended impressively in the second half with Jonas Olsson particularly sturdy at centre-back.

Watson tested Myhill with another long-range strike that was parried into the path of Beausejour, who fired the rebound over.

Lukaku did not enjoy a stellar afternoon, but might have restored West Brom's two-goal lead with a powerful shot from Shane Long's inventive backheel, but Al-Habsi make a superb reflex save.

Wigan continued to hog the ball but never looked like putting it in the net.

Shaun Maloney flashed a shot over, but even with a generous allocation of five minutes' stoppage time, Myhill was never seriously troubled.


Jonas Olsson (West Brom): A colossal defensive display from the Swede, whose positional sense, aerial prowess and leadership helped West Brom to their first away win of the season.


Wigan: Al Habsi 7, Kone 7, McCarthy 5, Caldwell 6, Watson 6, Di Santo 6, Maloney 6, Boyce 6, Ramis 6, Beausejour 7, Figueroa 6... Subs: Gomez N/A, Boselli N/A, Stam 6.

West Brom: Myhill 7, Olsson 8, Yacob 6, Ridgewell 7, Morrison 7, Long 7, Brunt 7, Lukaku 5, Mulumbu 5, McAuley 7, Jones 6... Subs: Rosenberg N/A, Gera 5, Odemwingie 6.