Baggies bounced by bad boy
So that`s what a win feels like. As the Tyneside collective breath sighs of relief, let gnawed nails grow back and attempt to replace the hair torn out, Joe Kinnear and the lads can return to training with a slight sense of satisfaction. It doesn`t repair the damage done by the derby defeat, nor the god awful start to the season, but it represents a beginning and one that must be built on.
Let`s not get carried away however as West Brom, for the first 45 minutes at least, rank as badly as some of the worst teams ever to crop up in the time we`ve been in the Premier League. Donk`s ridiculous dive in for the penalty and the defending for Martin`s goal wouldn`t look out of place on your average Sunday League pitch whilst some of their shooting represented my attempts at playing hung over.
However, as the proverbial Andy Gray saying goes, you can only beat what`s in front of you. Barton, Gutierrez and Duff shone in the first half with Shola, despite his few slips and stumbles, looking more lively than he`s been in a long time. At the back however there was some serious insecurity but given West Brom`s powder puff attack it wasn`t an issue.
Half time came and went however and Joe Kinnear got it badly wrong. Charged with sticking or twisting he did the former, allowing a much improved Baggies side to come forward and have a go. Miller came in and instantly set the cat amongst the pigeons, with Colo particularly shaky. It was no surprise when Koren dissected the defence to set Miller away and he took his goal well for someone who hadn`t scored in 13 games.
The tin-hat siege then came, although WBA only managed one chance of real note, from Miller saved by Shay. Had we been in a similar position against Villa I`d have wagered heavily on an equaliser but West Brom had no Phillips type any more to punish us.
So three points in the end launched us to 15th, albeit only until tonight`s round of games completes the 10th match of the season for most. Unlike their Midlands counterparts, Aston Villa are chasing Europe and aren`t going to roll over and die at the back with the likes of Laursen and Davies in situ. Therefore we must keep building.
Howay the Lads.