Diangana and Wallace on target as Albion take the points

Rotherham United 0 West Bromwich Albion 2

It was by no means a classic performance from Corberán’s Baggies, but they got the job done to recover from successive defeats and take all three points home from South Yorkshire. It was a victory that the visitors deserved even if they didn’t reach the heights of which they are capable.

Some credit must go to the hosts and their new head coach, Leam Richardson, as they worked incredibly hard to make life very difficult for Corberán’s team. In the first half in particular, they were very well organised and were able to snuff out Albion’s attacks, but were also unable to apply any sort of pressure on Alex Palmer’s goal resulting in a fairly drab affair for the neutral.

After the break, the visitors definitely stepped things up and deserved their opening goal albeit the deflection which took the ball away from Johannson in the Rotherham goal was fortunate. From that point on, the Baggies looked very much in control, as they had done in their last away victory at Cardiff City a couple of weeks ago, but this time they were able to secure the three points with a second goal. It was great to see Jed Wallace back on the field and his free kick that went in off the underside of the bar was a superb strike.

Corberán surprised us all one again as he started with a midfield three as Okay and Thomas-Asante came in for Swift and Maja. The Turk’s return was very welcome as Albion looked far more in control in the middle of the park with Molumby seeming to play as the most attacking of the central three. The return of Wallace to the squad was even more welcome and his introduction for the last 25 minutes of the game was very important in securing the result, and not just because of his excellent goal.

The visitors did cause a few nervous moments, mainly from set pieces, but the excellent Albion back four were always able to get a foot in at the right time and the hosts’ two shots on target were both fairly tame efforts. Like Sunderland, they pressed high and, while it did force Albion to go long more than they would like, they were rarely able to win the ball back in dangerous situations. Kipré was particularly impressive at the back, always looking unflustered under pressure.

The Baggies now return to the Hawthorns to take on Stoke City, another struggling side who have recently dismissed their manager. Another victory and that two-game losing streak will be nothing more than a blip.

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