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Match Report


Posted Sat 07 Apr 12 at 17:45 PM

Report: West Brom 3 Rovers 0

Rovers missed the chance to move out of the bottom three after a disappointing display at the Hawthorns.

Goal difference meant that they occupied 18th position and after the 3-0 loss to West Brom they that is where they remain.

West Brom started brightly and got an opening goal their play deserved when Martin Olsson could only divert Gareth McAuley's header into his own net.

The home side had dominated the first half, Rovers fortunate only to trail by a single goal at the break.

Rovers came out with renewed enthusiasm at the start of the second but three important saves from Ben Foster prevented Steve Kean's side levelling, the double save to deny Yakubu and Bradley Orr proving to be pivotal as Marc-Antoine Fortune took advantage of poor defending to double Albion's lead.

Five minutes from time Rovers conceded a weak third when an unmarked Liam Ridgewell glanced home and their troubles were added to when Anthony Modeste saw a straight red for lashing out at Billy Jones.

Rovers need to pick themselves up quickly, Liverpool at Ewood Park on Ewood Park the perfect opportunity.

Steve Kean made just the one change from the side that was unfortunate to lose to Manchester United on Monday night. David Dunn coming back into the starting eleven with Marcus Olsson dropping to the substitutes' bench.

The Rovers boss had asked for a high tempo start but unfortunately that came from the the home side as they set the tone by going straight at Rovers from the off with four corners inside the first eight minutes of the match.

After having dealt comfortably with the first three, the fourth however ended up in the back of the Rovers net for the opening goal of the game. The ball swung in from the right was met by the head of Gareth McAuley at the back post and diverted into his own net by the unfortunate Martin Olsson, it wasn't the start Steve Kean would have wished for, they had barely gotten out of their own half.

It took until the midway point of the half for Rovers to fashion their first chance of the game, Junior Hoilett turning well to feed in David Dunn 30 yards out, he spread the ball wide for Martin Olsson to cross to the back post but Bradley Orr, arriving at pace, was unable to keep his header down.

Jonas Olsson then had to clear the ball behind from inside his own six-yard box following a Dann header from a corner kick, then the former Birmingham defender headed tamely into the arms of Ben Foster after he latched onto Bradley Orr's centre.

Despite that spell of Rovers pressure it was Albion who always carried the greater attacking threat. Youssouf Mulumbu fired straight at Robinson after Marc-Antoine Fortune brushed off the attentions of Steven Nzonzi with ease.

At the other end Junior Hoilett tried to address that with a dancing run through the defence, it deserved the perfect finish but the Canadian curled his effort over the angle.

Then as Hoilett saw his route to goal blocked it fell to David Dunn but his side-footed effort was claimed by Foster low down.

Despite those late first half chances for Rovers, the half-time whistle came as a relief for Steve Kean's men as they had struggled to get to grips with the opposition in the opening period.

Whilst Rovers started the second half with the same eleven that ended the first, there were plenty of positional changes as boss Steve Kean looked to right the wrongs of the opening 45.

Junior Hoilett moved up alongside Yakubu, Jason Lowe went to the right, Pedersen wide left and David Dunn into the centre of midfield.

Suddenly Rovers were posing much more of a threat than they did in the first. An Orr cross from the right found the head of Pedersen but Foster claimed well.

Moments later the on-loan Albion goalkeeper made a stupendous double save to deny Rovers. First brilliantly thwarting Yakubu one-handed, then denying Orr on the rebound.

The momentum continued to be with Rovers, Hoilett played in Yakubu but he clipped his effort over the bar, then after a poor McAuley pass Hoilett raced into the area, his pull back was beyond Yakubu but as it arrived at Jason Lowe the midfielder fired high over the bar.

But for all of Rovers' improvement going forward it was at the back that was their downfall. A mistake from Scott Dann lead to him conceding a corner kick, and although it was hit long Yakubu failed to clear the ball away and as it was swept back into the six yard box where Marc-Antoine Fortune stole in to score at the back post.

Needing a response Rovers made a double change as Jason Lowe and Morten Gamst Pedersen were sacrificed for forwards Mauro Formica and Anthony Modeste.

But with five minutes remaining a soft free kick was given against Rovers and as Graham Dorrans swept the ball into the box Liam Ridgewell ran unmarked to glance past Paul Robinson.

To compound a miserable day in the midlands Anthony Modeste was given his marching orders for lashing out at Billy Jones after the defender had kicked the ball away.

Rovers need an immediate response when they take on Liverpool at Ewood Park on Tuesday night.

WEST BROM: Foster, Olsson, Ridgewell, Andrews, Brunt (c) (sub Cox 82 mins), Dorrans (sub Scharner 88 mins), Mulumbu, McAuley, Odemwingie, Jones, Fortune (sub Long 90 mins).

Subs not used: Daniels (GK), Tchoyi, Shorey, Dawson.

ROVERS: Robinson (c), Orr, Dann, Hanley, Martin Olsson, Pedersen (sub Modeste 78 mins), Lowe (sub Formica 78 mins), Nzonzi, Hoilett, Dunn, Yakubu.

Subs not used: Kean (GK), Givet, Petrovic, Marcus Olsson, Goodwillie.

Booked: Jones (West Brom), Dann (Rovers).

Off: Modeste

Attendance: 23,414

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