• Albion 1- 1 Southampton, 29.10.2017

    Not a match that will live long in the memory of the (one short of equalling the record) crowd at the Amex, in truth, but another hard-earned and precious point on the board. That many are seemingly underwhelmed with a draw against a side finishing consistently in the top ten of this division, is itself a sign of just how well the Albion has settled into Premier League life.

    Inherent pessimist that I am, the first mental target I had, was to surpass the legendary Derby points tally of 11. Hugely satisfying to have chalked that one off already, just 10 games in. I’m sure there are inevitably a lean spell or two to come at some point, but the team look like they belong, and have given themselves every chance.

    This latest episode didn’t start too well mind – after one early let-off, when nobody was alert to Ward-Prowse’s cut back (primarily because they’d all stopped when the ball travelled two feet off the pitch) - the away side went ahead on just seven minutes. Soffyan Boufal - undoubtedly talented, but equally snide - tripped by Stephens, when posing little danger, to concede a set-piece 28 yards from goal. There are few players in the league who deliver a better dead ball than Ward-Prowse and he punished Stephens accordingly – his effort curled over the wall, and striking the inside of the post, with Matt Ryan committed. The ball landed six yards in front of the unguarded net, where Saints’ captain Davis reacted first to nod it over the line.

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