MX23RW : Sunday, September 23 12:40:44

Live Commentary: West Bromwich Albion 2-0 Southampton - as it happened

Live Commentary: West Brom 2-0 Southampton - as it happened
© PA Photos
Sports Mole brings you live commentary of the clash between West Brom and Southampton at the Hawthorns.

Good evening and welcome to Sports Mole's live text coverage of tonight's Premier League clash between West Bromwich Albion and Southampton.

The Saints travel to the Hawthorns having yet to pick up an away point since returning to the top flight - form which has contributed to their position at the foot of the table.

They face a stern task in changing that record against a West Brom side that have won four out of five games on their own turf this season.

Victory tonight could move the Baggies to the lofty heights of fourth place, while three points will be invaluable to Nigel Adkins' struggling visitors.

Please note that kickoff is at 8.00pm.

7.22pmSo, first things first, team lineups. The headline news is that £14m-man Gaston Ramirez is back for Southampton.

7.24pmHe replaces Jason Puncheon in the Saints midfield, with Nigel Adkins sticking with the 4-4-2 system that really tested Spurs last time out.

7.26pmThat means both Rickie Lambert and Jay Rodriguez start in attack, while Paulo Gazzaniga is preferred to Artur Boruc in between the posts.

7.28pmHere is the full Southampton lineup then: Gazzaniga; Clyne, Fonte, Yoshida, Fox; Schneiderlin, S. Davis, Lallana, Ramirez; Lambert, Rodriguez - Subs: K. Davis, Hooiveld, Ward-Prowse, Guly, Shaw, Mayuka, Puncheon

7.30pmA big injury blow for the hosts is the absence of James Morrison, who has been instrumental in West Brom's fine early-season form.

7.32pmBaggies boss Steve Clarke has revealed that the Scot picked up a knock in training this week. Claudio Yacob takes his place in the centre of the park.

7.34pmTwo other changes for West Brom - Billy Jones in for Gonzalo Jara and Shane Long in for Romelu Lukaku.

7.35pmThe West Brom lineup in full: Foster, Jones, McAuley, Olsson, Ridgewell; Yacob, Mulumbu; Odemwingie, Gera, Dorrans; Long - Subs: Myhill, Popov, Brunt, Lukaku, Rosenberg, Fortune, Tamas

7.37pmNigel Adkins on the return of Gaston Ramirez: "We have to get him on the ball. We have to get him and Adam Lallana on the ball and hope that they can create chances for Rickie Lambert and Jay Rodriguez - because if we present them with chances, they will put them away."

7.40pmSome interesting quotes from Adkins on the absence of Artur Boruc: "It is a disciplinary matter. Unfortunately there was an incident against Tottenham last weekend which we are dealing with internally."

7.42pmNo doubt replacement stopper Gazzaniga and the Saints defence will be relieved not to have the physical threat of Lukaku against them tonight.

7.44pmThey do face a very different attacking weapon in the shape of the pacey Long, who will be salivating at the prospect of running at a very fragile defence.

7.46pmThe Saints have conceded 26 goals in their nine Premier League matches this season - the worst record in the division - and are yet to keep a clean sheet.

7.48pmScoring goals hasn't been a problem for the South Coast club though, they have netted more times than their opponents tonight - 14 to West Brom's 13.

7.50pmAround ten minutes to kickoff now in the west Midlands...

7.54pmNigel Adkins has certainly indicated some attacking intent with his starting XI tonight. There should be some goals in this one...

7.57pmThe players are out, and despite the frosty conditions, we don't appear to have a single pair of gloves! Apart from those worn by the goalkeepers of course...

7.58pmThe two sides, and the fans for that matter, respect the minute's silence being held for remembrance day impeccably.

8.00pmThe silence before the storm? We are underway now at the Hawthorns...

2 minBright start from the Baggies. Billy Jones runs down the right and crosses, but the ball falls to a Southampton defender.

3 minEarly sighter from Steven Davis, who fires an ambitious half-volley high into the stands.

5 minWest Brom corner. Towering Swede Jonas Olsson is likely to be the target.

7 minGazzaniga is called into action for the first time and it is by his own player. Yoshia's pacey back-pass looks to have put the young goalkeeper in trouble, but he remains calm and clears under pressure from two Baggies attackers.

9 minWe have out first caution of the game.Billy Jones is the unwilling recipient after catching Adam Lallana on the hip with his studs. He can't have any complaints - in-fact Fabricio Coloccini was sent off for something similar yesterday!

11 minLallana receives the ball from Ramirez and induces the foul from Olsson with a lovely turn. Both Saints players are over the 25-yard free kick and eyeing Ben Foster's goal.

12 minRamirez strikes it straight into the wall, but the previously interplay between him and Lallana will have pleased Nigel Adkins.

17 minA promising five minutes for the Saints, who are controlling the ball without any real potency. Twice West Brom sniff out attacks down the right...

19 minChance! The closest we've come to an opener as Odemwingie cuts in from the right and fires a low shot towards goal. Zoltan Gera attempts to divert the ball into the net from eight yards but can't control his effort, which flies over the crossbar.

21 minAnother half sight of goal for West Brom as sloppy work from Ramirez allows the hosts to counter through Mulumbu. He plays in Long down the left channel but the Irishman's attempted curler is well off target.

22 minWest Brom attack again through Odemwingie, who, along with Jones, is getting some joy down the Southampton left. The Nigerian centres the ball for Yacob to shoot from the edge of the area, but the effort goes harmlessly wide.

25 minFree kick whipped into the box from Gera and Olsson's flick-on nearly falls for Long, but Nathaniel Clyne is on hand to turn the ball behind for a corner.

27 minLallana gets to the byline after robbing Dorrans of the ball. He squares it, but Rodriguez is just too far behind play to get on the end of the pass.

29 minChance! After Fox's initial ball is only half cleared, Ramirez stands a cross up for Lambert to attack. However, the striker doesn't get a great connection and his 8-yard header is straight at Ben Foster.

30 minChance! Straight up the other end, West Brom come close. Again it is Odemwingie cutting inside and striking left footed and a diving Gazzaniga appears to be beaten, but the ball goes inches wide of the post.

35 minGOAL! West Brom 1-0 Southampton (Odemwingie) Mulumbu squares the ball to Odemwingie, whose left-footed strike beats Gazzaniga with the aid of a deflection off Yoshida.

36 minTwice before had Odemwingie threatened cutting inside, but Southampton did not learn. Again he is allowed to drift off the left and third time lucky he finds the net.

38 minGazzaniga may consider himself a little unfortunate, though. Had the ball not hit Yoshida en-route to goal he may well have kept that out.

40 minGood initial work from Odemwingie, who dodges a couple of Saints challenges but opts to drive towards goal rather than play in Long, who was in a much better position on the right edge of the box.

41 minFonte's clearing header drops to Mulumbu, who does well to get over a first-time volley that is blocked behind for a corner.

43 minNothing came from that, but Southampton nearly reaped the benefits of a Ben Foster mistake from a corner at the other end. The ex-England international drops quite a simple take, but fortunately is quick enough to react and collect the second ball before Rodriguez can pounce.

45 minChance! Great opportunity for West Brom to double their lead heading into the break. The Baggies counter through Odemwingie, who finds Long with a raking cross-field pass. Long shows a change of pace to brilliantly go past Fonte, but Gazzaniga races out to make an important block.

45 minOdemwingie has another attempt on goal, this time creating some space on his right foot before shooting just wide of the near post.

8.48pmHALF-TIME: West Brom 1-0 Southampton

HALF-TIME:West Brom enter the break ahead and you have to say that their lead is deserved. Odemwingie and Long have been a constant threat, particularly on the counter attack. Odemwingie had the aid of a deflection for his goal, but both he and Long came close on several other occasions towards the end of the half, while Southampton only once opened up the Baggies defence. It is the same old problems at the back for Southampton, but I think there will be more goals in this one...

46 minThe action has resumed at the Hawthors, with both sides unchanged.

47 minWOODWORK! Southampton get a bit of a lucky break as McAuley's clearing header smashes Rodriguez in the face and rebounds kindly to Lambert. The Saints top scorer takes one touch before attempting to curl the ball into the top corner. He is so close, but his effort just doesn't have enough dip and comes back off the crossbar.

49 minNathaniel Clyne slides a superb through pass towards Ramirez, but Foster reacts quickly to get to the ball ahead of the Uruguayan.

50 minIt has certainly been an open start to this second half. Gera's floated free kick is heading towards Ridgewell at the far post, but Rodriguez nips in ahead of him to nod the ball behind.

54 minLovely exchange of passes between Odemwingie and Mulumbu, who must have kept the ball for 30 seconds between them on the Baggies right. A poor cross from the goalscorer means the danger ultimately comes to nothing, but Odemwingie continues to be the dangerman.

56 minGreat hands from Foster, who holds a driven Fox cross that, with Rodriguez and Lambert in wait, could have been dangerous.

59 minGOAL! West Brom 2-0 Southampton (Odemwingie) Superb counter-attack goal from West Brom as Odemwingie bags his second. Ridgewell's lofted pass is chased down by Long, who waits, and waits, for the surging run of Odemwingie before delivering a perfect cross for the Nigerian to stoop low and head home. Brilliant.

61 minI had hyped the Odemwingie-Long counter attack combination and there proves its worth. Superb goal.

63 minGreat challenge from Clyne, who chases down Ridgewell before sliding in and preventing him getting a shot away from the left edge of the box.

64 minMore West Brom pressure as Gera forces Gazzaniga into a smart save with a powerful strike.

65 minSubstitution: A change for the Baggies, who welcome Chris Brunt off the bench and back from injury. The club captain replaces Graham Dorrans in midfield.

66 min"You're getting sacked in the morning" is the chant from the home fans, directed at visiting boss Nigel Adkins. Football fans can be so unsympathetic!

69 minHalf a chance for West Brom to wrap it up as Long steals the ball from Schneiderlin, but delays playing the ball to an unmarked Gera. Southampton clear the danger, but Gera could have been away had Long been able to find him with an earlier pass.

71 minSubstitution: No rest bite for the Southampton defenders, who watch on as Long makes way for Lukaku.

72 minSouthampton are not giving up yet though. They have pushed their full-backs on and are almost playing with a two-man defence, which makes their taming Lukaku task all the more difficult.

75 minDouble change: Adkins turns to his bench in hope of some much-needed inspiration. Rodriguez and Ramirez make way for Guly do Prado and Emmanuel Mayuka.

77 minDavis sends in a decent cross and Do Prado is straight into the action, albeit with a poor misdirected header. In truth, Southampton haven't looked like finding a reply since falling behind.

78 minChance! Great effort from Brunt! Fonte allows the ball to bounce and Lukaku is on him in a flash, showing his brute strength to flatten the Saints defender within the letter of the law. He stands up a inviting cross for the on-running Brunt, whose first-time volley whistles just past the post.

81 minPenalty shout! Clyne cuts in off the right and plays in Lallana, who is felled by Olsson. The Saints captain makes little of it, but replays show that he appeared to trip Lallana - Southampton will feel hard done by.

83 minSubstitution: Luke Shaw becomes Southampton's youngest ever Premier League player by replacing Danny Fox at left-back.

84 minSubstitution: Clarke turns to his bench for the final time to give Odemwingie the standing ovation he deserves. The goalscorer leaves to rapturous applause, with Marc-Antoine Fortune coming on for six minutes plus added time.

86 minCorner for Southampton. They need something to happen, and fast.

87 minThe ball in is poor and West Brom can clear.

88 minChance! Another Saints corner does result in a chance as Yoshida climbs well and sends a powerful header back across goal. Billy Jones is watchful on the line though and guides it just wide of the post.

90 minWe are now entering stoppage time, of which there will be three minutes. It is going to take some fireworks from the Saints to salvage something on Bonfire Night.

90 minChance! Lambert knocks the ball down into the path of Lallana, who stretches to control it, but is foiled by Foster before he can get a shot away.

9.50pmFULL-TIME: West Brom 2-0 Southampton

9.56pmFULL-TIME: A deserved three points for West Brom, who inflict a tenth defeat of the season on a Southampton side who cannot stop leaking goals. The Saints remain bottom, while West Brom climb to fifth with a victory that came courtesy of a Peter Odemwingie brace. The Nigerian was a constant threat down the Baggies right, especially in tandem with Shane Long on the counter attack. Youssouf Mulumbu was a dominating presence in the middle of the park, while there were assured performances all along the back line. The hosts were impressive all-round and their place in the table is reflective of how well they have started the season.

9.58pmYou can read a full report on the match here.

10.00pmThat's it from me for tonight. Thanks for joining Sports Mole this evening and be sure to come back for our in-depth coverage of the Champions League action tomorrow night. Until then, goodbye!

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