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West Bromwich Albion
West Ham United
28 April 2012
• The Hawthorns, West Bromwich
Referee: M. Clattenburg
• Attendance: 25984
West Bromwich Albion
FULL TIME! Both teams had chances to win the game at the death, but it finished a goalless draw at the Hawthorns. Despite another winless game for McLeish's side, this point could prove crucial in Villa's survival hopes.
90' + 1'
90' + 1'
A frantic finale at the Hawthorns, Given saves fantastically to his left on the line from an Odemwingie shot, with many claiming the ball crossed the line. Replays show it didn't, great save.
Four minutes of added time at the Hawthorns.
Another goal mouth scramble in the West Brom box, but Foster eventually claims it.
A massive chance for Villa to steal all three points, as Foster and Olsson bundle in the box, appearing to leave an open goal, Agbonlahor crosses to Heskey who's shot is blocked, Clark has a chance with the rebound but Olsson does brilliantly to block again.
Hutton keeps the ball in play along the right, and gives it to Warnock who's cross goes straight to an Albion player, who clears for a throw in.
Some risky passing by Albion at the back puts them in danger, but Foster eventually clears.
Hutton gives away another free-kick on the half way line, he has to be careful or the Villans might end the game with ten men.
Fortune then attacks for the Baggies down the left, but slices his cross and it goes for a goal kick.
Warnock floats a free-kick deep into the Albion half, but Chris Herd Climbs all over Olsson and a foul is given.
Mulumbu almost unlocks the Villa defence with a good through ball.
Gary Gardner comes on for N'Zogbia as Villa look to defend their goal from an Albion barrage.
West Brom putting in crosses literally left, right and center, as Villa can't clear the ball out well enough, it ends with an Olsson header that flashes over the bar.
West Brom have a free-kick mid way in the Villa half. Brunt tries to get it to Olsson at the back post with a move straight off the training ground, but the Swede can't reach it.
Good play by Brunt and Thomas sees the latter's shot blocked, but Odemwingie with his back to goal turns neatly and has a curling shot blocked off the line by the head of Cuellar.
West Brom are applying the pressure now as Villa can't seem to get near the ball.
Dorrans floats a cross to the back post after some good passing by the Baggies, Long tries to head the ball back across goal but it's cleared for an Albion corner.
Yellow Card Emile Heskey
The yellow cards are piling up for Villa now as Heskey goes in late with a crunching tackle on Olsson.
Hutton brings down Thomas with a late tackle, but only gets a talking to by the ref, the right back is skating on thin ice
Yellow Card Ciaran Clark
The game has got scrappy all of sudden as we see a nudge into the back of Mulumbu by Agbonlahor and then a late tackle by Clark on Jones seconds later. Clattenburg gives a yellow for the second foul but nothing for the first.
Thomas tracks back to tackle N'Zogbia and appears to bring him down, the referee doesn't give anything and allows West Brom to counter attack. McLeish is livid with the decision, but Thomas sportingly puts the ball out of play.
N'Zogbia has a great chance to put Villa ahead, as Agbonlahor puts in a neat cross to the Frenchman, but his side-footed shot is straight at the Baggies goalkeeper.
Villa seem to have reaffirmed some control over the game as they retain possession, and look to attack with Agbonlahor.
The Baggies have started the half very strongly, and Hodgson appears to be bemused by the referee's decision as he sees the replay again.
Hutton is already on a yellow card, if the officials had spotted that he'd be off, and Aston Villa would be facing a very hard uphill battle.
West Brom get a corner and Ridgewell gets free header at the back of the box. The defender has his effort on goal blocked by Hutton off the line. Ridgewell is screaming for a handball and the replays appear to confirm it, but Clattenburg gives a corner.
Jerome Thomas attacks down the left of the field and crosses in to the box, the villa defence clear it, but only back to Thomas who gets another chance to put the ball in the box, but the sceond effort is also cleared.
West Brom kick us off after the restart, lets hope we see a better forty five minutes in this West Midlands derby.
HALF TIME at the Hawthorns! This game remains the only Premier League match without a goal. Villa have had the better chances and a very good shout for a hand ball, so will feel hard done by that they haven't entered the break in the lead.
Yellow Card Alan Hutton
Hutton receives a yellow card for a foul on the edge of his own box, Dorran's swings in the free-kick but Heskey of all players is there to head it over his own bar for a corner.
There are appeals for handball from Villa as Brunt appears to have handled the ball after a Hutton cross, Clattenburg has an unobstructed view but doesn't give a penalty.
Long battles with Carlos Cuellar along the right of the box and wins a corner for his side. Ridgewell is deemed to have fouled Clark in the box so the play is brought back for a free-kick.
Yellow Card Stephen Warnock
Stephen Warnock receives the first card of the game as he slides in on Long after miscontrolling the ball. Both players receiving medical attention as the game is stopped.
West Brom counter attack with Odemwingie on the right who combines well with Brunt who cuts it back across goal, but it's put out for another corner by the Villa defence.
Agbonlahor receives the ball from Heskey and is through on goal, but he spurns the chance as his shot is straight at Foster who parries it away.
Eric Lichaj puts a searching ball into the box towards Heskey, although the striker gets his head to it, he can't direct it and it goes out for a goal kick.
Agbonlahor makes up about 4 yards on Billy Jones in the West Brom defence and his pace drags him through on goal, but hs final touch is too heavy as Foster comes out to smother the ball.
Odemwingie then has a shot for the Baggies, but it flashes well wide of the post.
Best chance of the game so far falls to Villa as Dunne who finds himself on the right wing crosses into Herd, who hits his shot too close to Foster who just about gathers it up.
The corner is deep and Olsson unmarked knocks it back into the box, but it's once more cleared by the Republic of Ireland defender.
Dunne makes amends for the foul as he clears the corresponding free-kick, but McLeish's side aren't out of trouble as it goes for a corner.
Dunne makes a reckless challenge on the right side of the Villa box, and will count himself lucky not to get a yellow. The defender seems to be lacking a little match sharpness in this opening half hour.
Baggies captain Brunt makes a clumsy challenge on Clark in the middle of the field and gets a talking to from the referee.
N'Zogbia has another chance after Agbonlahor slips the ball through to the Frenchman, but his shot goes wide of the mark.
Villa have a freekick towards the right of the pitch, Charles N'Zogbia puts the ball in the box but its cleared by the Baggies.
Nothing comes of the set-piece as Dunne clears it with is head.
Chris Brunt has a strike from outside the box, it gets a deflection and West Brom have their first corner.
Stephen Warnock tried to find Agbonlahor with a nice through ball, but the striker couldn't arc his run as its called offside.
West Brom attack again with Long, he goes past Dunne, and scuffs his shot across goal, but the ball isn't cleared and it falls akwardly to Peter Odemwingie 4 yards out. He try's a clever flick but Shay Given blocks it.
Villa starting to exert some pressure, but WBA try to counter attack with Shane Long. The striker doesn't have enough support and the villa defence deal with it.
An inswinging corner sees Agbonlahor record the first effort of the match, but his header goes well over the bar.
Emile Heskey receives the ball near the edge of the box and runs at Gareth McAuley, he almost runs it out of play, but is able to win a corner.
Both sides stringing a few passes together at the start of this game, but nothing has come of it yet.
Mark Clattenburg referees today, which bodes well for Villa, as they haven't lost in the last three games in which he's been in charge.
Aston Villa get us underway at the Hawthorns!
The Baggies on the other hand have enjoyed a fairly solid campaign and will be looking to end it in the top half of the table for the first time. A home win today means the would have recorded their highest Premier League points tally with 48 points.
McLeish’s side also need to pick up six points from their next three games to avoid recording their lowest ever tally of points in a Premier League season.
The Villans have been on a very poor run of form, having not won in their last seven games and are now only three points above the drop zone. A win in this derby will be crucial to their survival hopes.
Alex McLeish has made three changes to the side that lost to Bolton midweek. The Villans will be boosted by the return of Richard Dunne who is back in contention after a broken collarbone sustained in February. Gabriel Agbonlahor is back in the starting eleven as Andreas Weimann drops to the bench. Ciaran Clark comes in to replace Nathan Baker, while one notable exception from the Villa squad is Marc Albrighton.
Roy Hodgson has named an unchanged team from the one that secured victory in their last game against Liverpool.
Aston Villa: Given; Hutton, Cuellar, Dunne, Lichaj; N’Zogbia, Clark, Herd, Warnock; Agbonlahor, Heskey. Subs: Guzan, Collins, Ireland, Bannan, Weimann, Gardner, Carruthers.
West Brom: Foster; Jones, McAuley, Olsson, Ridgewell; Brunt, Mulumbu, Dorrans, Thomas; Long, Odemwingie. Subs: Fulop, Andrews, Shorey, Dawson, Cox, Fortune, Scharner.
Good afternoon everyone and welcome to Goal.com’s LIVE! play-by-play text commentary of West Bromwich Albion vs Aston Villa at the Hawthorns. In just a moment we’ll be bringing you the starting line-ups and a little analysis about the upcoming fixture.
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