I’m sure many Albion fans will have taken a point ahead of the game against Spurs. However reflecting back on the game, West Brom could so easily have snatched all three points. A point against a Champions League team: Not bad at all.
It’s fair to say that Harry Redknapp’s side did dominate the first half although Albion did create some chances.
Tottenham’s football at times was sublime and some of the touches they showed were terrific. Rafael Van Der Vaart had a decent game and the Dutchman will be a great addition to the Spurs squad as well as to the Premiership.
Even when Spurs did take the lead through Luka Modric, Albion never let their heads drop and scoring just before half-time will have done them the world of good.
Paul Scharner also had a decent debut and he was unlucky with a long range effort that went just over.
Tottenham may have dominated the first half but they were unable to score a second and Albion made them pay.
Marc-Antoine Fortune’s left-foot drive looped off Carlo Cudicini which then allowed Peter Odemwingie to flick the ball on and Chris Brunt was on hand to tuck the ball home.
Brunt scored his 50th league goal and The Baggies were right back in the game. Brunt’s goal was exactly what Albion needed and Roberto Di Matteo will have been the happier of the two managers at half-time with the scoreline.
Spurs started the second half like they did in the first half and Gareth Bale had a golden opportunity to make it 2-1.
The Welshman was through on goal after Van Der Vaart played a clever through ball. However Bale’s effort was well saved by Scott Carson and the score remained level.
Younes Kaboul had a long range effort that was saved by the ex-Liverpool goalkeeper and at that point Tottenham were piling on the pressure.
Albion to their credit were being stubborn and resilient and The Baggies had chances late on to win the game.
Had it not been for Cudicini, West Brom may well have won the game. Cudicini made a good save from Jonas Olsson’s header and the Italian made a world class stop to deny Odemwingie’s low effort that was heading for the far corner.
Gabriel Tamas wasted a late opportunity to score the winner. The Romanian with only Cudicini to beat blazed the ball wide after a neat Odemwingie back heel played Tamas in.
It could have been three points but a draw against a Champions League team was not a bad result.
Scott Carson had a good game in my view and when called upon he did what he had to do. Fortune held the ball well yet again and brought others into play. Odemwingie looked a threat as always and Paul Scharner looks to be a solid addition to the squad.
Compared to Tony Mowbray’s side in the Premiership, Albion this time round look a more resilient side. With more experienced players on board, I’m confident that West Brom can defy the odds and beat the drop.
Albion have been tougher to beat after their 6-0 drubbing away at Chelsea which is a positive and long may it continue. West Brom can take inspiration from what their next opponents achieved last season.
Birmingham City were terrific and finishing 9th was a great achievement for the club. They have a manager who is in my view one of the best managers in the country and Alex McLeish deserves a lot of praise for the job he has done at St. Andrews.
Blues were only beaten twice at home last season and they have proven to be a tough nut to crack. It will be a difficult game for West Brom but there is no reason why they can’t beat their local rivals.
It should be a cracking game on Saturday and I’m really looking forward to it. The first West Midlands derby of the season is here and we should be in for a great game.
Based on what I have seen so far, West Brom may well fancy their chances against Birmingham but the game on Saturday may well be a clash that sees both sides cancel each other out.
It’s a local derby and anything can happen! Bring on Saturday.