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Blackburn 1-1 West Brom: FLW reports as Ewood encounter keeps promotion race alive



When these two sides look back on this season, it could be argued that this could be identified by both as an opportunity missed.

Both sides had their fair share of chances to claim all three points, but with neither able to take one of those opportunities, West Brom have been left with no margin for error in the battle for promotion, while Blackburn are now facing a four-point deficit with just three games to play in their quest for a play-off, in spite of another admirable performance on home soil against a top-two Championship side.

Leeds took all three points when they were faced with that this time last week, and you have to wonder whether West Brom’s ability to do the same this time around could yet have a big say in who is savouring a place in the Premier League, and who is facing the lottery of the play-offs in little over a week’s time.

With Brentford’s win over Derby in the day’s early kick-off reducing West Brom’s advantage over the play-off places to just two points at the start of play, and with the Bees enjoying a significantly stronger goal difference, the pressure was on the Baggies at kick-off, although it seemed as though they were ready to rise to the occasion.

Although Blackburn had the first half-chance inside two minutes when Adam Armstrong missed his kick inside the area after a good run and cross from Dominic Samuel, it was the visitors who would quickly start to dominate the chances.

Both Charlie Austin – from a narrowly offside position – and Kamil Grosicki brought good saves of Christian Walton in the Blackburn goal before the quarter-hour mark.

Slaven Bilic’s side would go even closer shortly before the drinks, Matheus Pereira did well to keep a ball in on the by-line inside the Blackburn area, before teeing up Charlie Austin who fired over while unmarked just outside the six-yard box when he should really have done better.

Next up to try his luck for the visitors was Pereira himself, as he picked up the ball inside the Rovers, rode the challenge of Lewis Travis to break into the area, but saw his shot blocked behind at close range by former West Brom loanee Tosin Adarabioyo for a corner that ultimately came to nothing.

Walton would be brought into action again not long after, Pereira again finding Austin, this time with a neat through ball into the area, but the on-loan Brighton man was quick off his line to charge down the effort and put it behind for a corner from which Pereira would eventually fire into the side-netting.

Eventually, with five minutes to go in the first half, the opener would arrive for the Baggies. Again, Pereira would find Austin in the area, but this time the striker would elect to lay the ball off rather than go for goal himself, rolling it into the path of Filip Krovinovic who fired home at the back post to give West Brom a deserved lead.

Remarkably, the first half would end with the Baggies a goal to the good, despite a frantic end to the opening 45 that saw both ‘keepers called into action. First Sam Johnstone denied Danny Graham with a free header at the back post from a free-kick, before Walton prevented Jake Livermore from doubling the Baggies lead from inside the area while on the counter from that Graham chance.

That trend of big chances missed would continue almost immediately after the break.

Barely three minutes after the resumption, Grosicki did brilliantly to find Pereira on the edge of the Blackburn area, Walton could only parry the Brazilian’s shot straight into the path of Krovinovic, who managed fire the ball back off the post when it looked easier to double his and his side’s tally.

Both managers then turned to the bench at the hour mark, Blackburn sending on four news faces to West Brom’s two, and it was Tony Mowbray’s move that would tell first, with three of those substitutes linking up to draw the hosts level.

Elliott Bennett played a ball down the right to Sam Gallagher, who cut into the West Brom penalty area before centring for Joe Rothwell to slam home the leveller from ten yards out.

West Brom would respond brightly to going behind, with one of their own substitutes, Grady Diangana, not surprisingly looking dangerous, causing trouble down the left and firing one into the side netting as the visitors looked to restore their advantage.

Rovers however, would be the ones to go closest to a winner the game wore on, first Sam Johnstone did well to deny Jacob Davenport when one on one as the hosts broke from a West Brom corner.

A brilliant run and pass from Joe Rothwell into Lewis Holtby then almost inexplicably ended with the German failing not once but twice to put the ball in the back of the net as the Baggies eventually cleared off the line.

In the end though, neither side could find a winner, forcing both to settle for a point that both probably deserved, even though both would have wanted all three.

ScoopDragon Football News Network

Article title: Blackburn 1-1 West Brom: FLW reports as Ewood encounter keeps promotion race alive

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