Watching on as Tammy Abraham squeezed his penalty past the legs of Sam Johnstone with the final kick of one of the most nerve-wracking 120 minutes plus of football you are ever likely to see, you wonder just what Salomon Rondon will have been thinking.
That penalty from Abraham sealed Aston Villa’s place in the Championship play-off final at Wembley, and finally ended West Brom’s dreams of an immediate return to the Premier League, something which may well have sealed Rondon’s fate at The Hawthorns.
Whilst his parent club have been battling all season to make the quickest possible return to the promised land, Rondon has spent the campaign battling to keep Newcastle from dropping out of it, and the Venezuelan has completed his challenge with considerable success.
Ending the season as Newcastle’s top scorer and Player of the Season, and with the plaudits rolling in, it seems inevitable that Rondon will return to the Premier League without the Baggies, something with the club should come to accept, and even benefit from.
Following confirmation that West Brom will not be in the Premier League next season, the buyout clause in Rondon’s has now been set at £16.5million, and it seems there could be a number of top flight sides keen to pay that price.
Albion are surely set to be touted as one of the favourites for promotion from the Championship again next season, and with a number of the current either approaching the end of their careers or only at the club on loan themselves, they will have to strengthen in the summer transfer window if they are to live up to those expectations.
It would seem pointless keeping Rondon at the club when it seems clear that the forward is determined to play in the top flight next season, particularly when that money could help the squad elsewhere.
You feel it would be with a heavy heart that the target man will move on permanently from The Hawthorns, but he will feel that it is the best move for his career.
And, allowing him to return to the Premier League, may give West Brom themselves the best chance of following him there this time next year.Like what the FLW have on offer? Sign up for more notifications!