Late win­ner leaves Bag­gies on brink

Sunday Independent (Ireland) - Sport - - SOCCER - ED EL­LIOT

WEST Brom’s slim hopes of sur­vival suf­fered an­other set­back as they sur­ren­dered the lead to lose at Bournemouth. Jay Ro­driguez had looked set to ease the pres­sure on Al­bion boss Alan Pardew as he opened the scor­ing early in the sec­ond half.

But late goals from Jor­don Ibe and Ju­nior Stanis­las turned the game around to in­flict a sev­enth suc­ces­sive league loss on the Bag­gies, a re­sult that leaves them 10 points from safety.

The vis­i­tors went into this fix­ture with just three vic­to­ries from 30 league games, one of which came against the Cher­ries on the open­ing day. Pardew, who held clear-the-air talks with the club’s own­ers dur­ing the week, re­sponded to last week’s hu­mil­i­at­ing 4-1 home loss to Le­ices­ter by mak­ing three changes.

Goal-scorer Ro­driguez was one of the men brought in, along­side cap­tain Jonny Evans and mid­fielder Clau­dio Ya­cob, with Grze­gorz Krychowiak dropped to the bench along with for­wards Matt Phillips and Oliver Burke.

Bournemouth ini­tially of­fered lit­tle in re­sponse to Ro­driguez’s opener and seemed to slid­ing to­wards a de­feat which could have sucked them back into rel­e­ga­tion dan­ger.

But they lev­elled 13 min­utes from time in for­tu­itous fash­ion as Ibe un­leashed a spec­u­la­tive ef­fort from range which Ben Foster could only help into the cor­ner of the net.

A point would have done lit­tle to ease the Bag­gies’ per­ilous sit­u­a­tion and they were left with noth­ing with two min­utes re­main­ing. Stanis­las stepped up to ex­pertly curl home a 25-yard free­kick to end Bournemouth’s four-match win­less run.

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