Cardiff City climbed up to 12th in the Championship table last night following their surprise 2-1 victory over promotion-chasing West Brom courtesy of efforts from Callum Paterson and Lee Tomlin in the Welsh capital.
The Bluebirds entered the match looking to end their three-game winless run in the Championship following a heavy 6-1 defeat against QPR before draws with Swansea and Birmingham, and Neil Harris’ side returned to winning ways in stunning fashion.
Cardiff were able to capitalise on the Baggies’ poor recent form by taking the lead through Paterson just after half-time before Charlie Austin levelled the scores from the spot, but Tomlin then scored a free-kick in the 76th minute to seal the three points.
The result means Cardiff are have moved within five points of the Championship top six, and plenty of credit must go to Paterson who opened the scoring for his side on just his sixth league start of the season, while he also delivered a strong all-round display against Albion.
Here, we take a closer look at Paterson’s numbers from the match…
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Paterson was handed a starting place in Neil Harris’ side following impressive showings against Birmingham and Reading in recent matches, and the hard-working attacker proved to be a dangerous presence for the Bluebirds on the night.
The 25-year-old has seen his playing time limited by both Harris and Neil Warnock this season, but he proved his ability to find the net for his side just after half-time when he scored with a rebounded effort to give Cardiff the advantage.
The strong threat Paterson posed is also reflected in the fact he won a solid total of six aerial duels against Bilic’s men, with this being far more than any of the other Cardiff players, and Paterson’s ability to win the ball certainly helped his side in attack.
He also displayed his ability to create opportunities for his side by registering one key pass against a challenging West Brom defence, with only midfielder Will Vaulks bettering this figure for the Bluebirds on the night.
There are certainly some areas where Harris will want Paterson to improve, with this including his 37.5% pass completion rate and the fact he committed a high total of eight fouls throughout the match, but it could be argued Paterson instead used his strengths to his benefit against Albion.
He was largely responsible for winning the ball back for his side while being a general nuisance for the West Brom defence, and his hard-working performance should certainly be enough for him to retain his starting spot next time out.