Premier League - West Brom take derby spoils

Sun, 16 Oct 14:00:00 2011

West Bromwich Albion won the Black Country derby with a 2-0 Premier League victory against Wolverhampton Wanderers at The Hawthorns.

West Brom 2 Wolves 0

Chris Brunt opened the scoring with a thumping finish on eight minutes, before substitute Peter Odemwingie put the result beyond doubt 15 minutes from time.

The win moves West Brom out of the bottom three, while Wolves continue their freefall down the table - they have lost their last five games and looked toothless in attack against slick, well-organised opposition.

Wolves started quicker on a gloriously sunny Sunday lunchtime; Adam Hammill's angled volley forced a good save from Ben Foster in the third minute.

Having soaked up some early pressure, West Brom struck with their first attack.

Billy Jones, making his Premier League debut at left-back, cut the ball back to the penalty spot where Brunt arrived with an emphatic finish, crashing the ball into the roof of the net left-footed.

West Brom found joy all afternoon on the left flank, as Jones, Jerome Thomas and Shane Long all targeted makeshift Wolves right-back Richard Stearman.

Roy Hodgson's men counter-attacked down that side with pace and menace, and would have doubled their lead if not for a goal-saving tackle by Stephen Ward when Thomas squared low for Long.

There were similar heroics at the West Brom end when Foster parried a Nenad Milijas shot into the path of Kevin Doyle, whose prospective open goal was denied by a brilliant last-ditch tackle from Jonas Olsson.

At the other end, another fine counter-attack resulted in Paul Scharner shooting just wide, while a dipping Youssuf Mulumbu shot forced Hennessey into a sharp save.

The introduction of substitute Sylvan Ebanks-Blake briefly sparked Wolves into life. The striker teed up Hammill for a shot that brought another good save from Foster, before Ebanks-Blake himself tested the goalkeeper from 25 yards.

The visitors' best chance of achieving parity fell to their captain Roger Johnson, who failed to convert a free header from six yards following Kevin Doyle's fine cross from the left side.

Odemwingie came on after 73 minutes, and made an immediate impact. The Nigerian, relegated to a peripheral role recently after top-scoring last season, picked up a Scharner backheel and drove a left-foot shot low past Wayne Hennessey.

Odemwingie spurned two further chances to extend the lead, blazing the ball into the crowd, but by that time Wolves were beaten.

The match ended with tempers fraying, as Stephen Hunt and Ward both committed bad fouls on Scharner, whose ability to wind up opponents remains undimmed.

West Brom are unbeaten in three and hitting their stride after a tough start - meanwhile Wolves head in the other direction, and Mick McCarthy already faces a significant challenge reviving his side's fortunes.

Alex Chick - Twitter @alexchick81 / Eurosport

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