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West Brom player ratings: Sublime Furlong and Diangana help to keep Albion unbeaten


Three second half goals for West Brom turned the game on its head as they eased – eventually – past relegation zone residents Huddersfield Town.

The Baggies have their lowly visitors the lead on two occasions in the first half – firstly through Lewis O’Brien and then Karlan Grant – having replied in between through Matt Phillips.

The introduction of Grady Diangana at the break, coupled with strikes from Darnell Furlong, Phillips again and Semi Ajayi, ensured Albion remain unbeaten and are back in the play-offs.

Though Albion supporters left The Hawthorns with a grin on their face, Bilic will know that goals can’t be so easy to come by for opponents.

Here is how Joseph Chapman rated the players.

Joe Chapman will be covering West Bromwich Albion and providing a regular supply of varied content for the 2019-20 season, as Slaven Bilic looks to guide the club back to the Premier League.

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WEST BROM 4-2-3-1

Johnstone 6

Cuts a figure low on confidence a lot of the time, something not helped by sarcastic cheers from the sections of the fans. A couple of passes went straight out of play, under no pressure.

More collected in the second half.

Furlong 9*

Bombs forwards with enthusiasm in abundance. A couple of excellent deliveries asked questions, and he played a big hand in Phillips’ goal.

Like last week, he had a couple of attempts on goal of his own, before the all important equaliser arrived.

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Ajayi 7

Another solid performance, save for the particularly sloppy goals conceded. Ajayi was beaten too easily for O’Brien’s goal, but was measured in his decision making in the second half.

Took his goal really well, even if he was totally unmarked.

Bartley 5

Really undercooked pass out from the back led to Grant nudging Huddersfield in front.

Seemed to relish the challenge of Mitrovic last weekend, but here the costly errors were detrimental. Attackers bailed out the defence in the second half but Bartley held firm when under pressure.

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Ferguson 7

Demonstrated his maturity in a couple of moments when under pressure from the wily Kachunga.

Not as gung ho in an attacking sense as Gibbs or Furlong, but continues to look football at Championship level – even though he’s out of position.

Some crunching challenges at the end were executed to perfection.

Sawyers 7

Gorgeous ball creamed across the pitch to Furlong began a tidy move, but Sawyers will be disappointed that he couldn’t do more to prevent O’Brien breaking through from midfield to open the scoring.

Another excellent through pass to right-back Furlong almost led to a leveller before the break. Languid style seems to frustrate fans sometimes.

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How will West Brom get on against Huddersfield Town?



Livermore 7

Quiet in the first half. A tad slow in the build-up on occasion, but grew into the game in the second half and offered up an important contribution with Albion needing to see the game out.

Might’ve scored with a rasping drive that missed by inches, but much better in the second period.

Pereira 7

Started the half on the left but, after being so effective in the hole against Blackburn, here it felt as though his talents were wasted.

Not lightning quick like Edwards or Diangana, so struggled to beat his man despite his obvious ball skills.

Much better in the second half when he filled the ten role.

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Krovinovic 4

Very quiet in the first half. With Austin regularly coming deep to collect the ball and be involved, Krovinovic struggled to have any significant impact.

With Bilic able to introduce Diangana at the break and shift Pereira into the centre, Krovinovic was sacrificed.

Phillips 8

Excellent finish to bring Albion on level terms, but Phillips struggled to find the final ball down the right on occasions.

In front of goal, though Phillips was on the money. The third goal was stroked home beautifully. He showed for the ball often and combined well with Pereira and Diangana.

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Austin 6

Much more involved here than at Fulham. Combined well on a number of occasions with Furlong on the right.

The first league goal for Austin remains elusive; though he had one or two half chances here he wasn’t able to convert.

Got through plenty of work.

Subs

Diangana (for Krovinovic HT) 8

An inspired substitution.

Like Edwards at Fulham, Diangana injected some life into Albion’s play in the final third. Two assists, the second of those a mazy run into the box before a pinpoint pass, reflected that impact perfectly.

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Zohore (for Austin 72) 5

A run out he didn’t get last weekend, Zohore helped to see the game out with some important hold up play.

Robson-Kanu (for Phillips 82) N/A

Subs not used: Bond, Brunt, O’Shea, Edwards

Huddersfield : Grabara, Hadergjonaj, Elphick, Schindler, Kongolo (Brown 63), Chalobah, Hogg, O’Brien (Diakhaby 83), Kachunga, Grant, Campbell (Mounie 65)

Subs not used: Schofield, Bacuna, Mbenza, Stankovic

GOALS

Albion – Phillips 19, 74, Furlong 70, Ajayi 89; Huddersfield – O’Brien 16, Grant 36

The ref: Tim Robinson

Attendance : 23,977 (1,107 away)

Up next: Queens Park Rangers (a) Saturday 28 September (12:30pm KO)





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