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Page last updated at 18:16 GMT, Sunday, 23 January 2011

Blackburn v WBA as it happened


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By Chris Whyatt

1815: That's it from me folks. Really enjoyed your company today, and some of the football on show at a lively Ewood Park - which you can read about in full right here. So then. Join me again tomorrow evening as we shine our spotlight on Bolton's trip to Chelsea. Have the Blues really climbed out of that woeful patch of bad form? Could be intriguing. See you from about 1930 GMT.

Blackburn scorer David 'Junior' Hoilett: "That goal means the world to me."

Lloyder418 on 606: "Who would you rather meet in a dark alley: Christopher Samba or Jean-Claude Van Damme?"

1805: Must doff our caps to Paul Robinson, who made two world-class saves in that match. Asked about the number of nationalities on show, he tells Sky Sports genuinely: "It's really good for the game, though maybe not for our national team." Asked about putting himself back in the frame for an England recall, his face lights up wryly: "Not at the moment, no". Very easy to read between the lines.

Champagne moment
1803: May as well break open the champers: Roman Bednar's late arrival on the pitch did mean a new Premier League record for having the most national participate in one match. A remarkable 22, according to Infostrada Sports.

1757: In amongst the misty-eyed flood of own goal memories, there was a half-decent game there. Don't think Blackburn will have Barcelona fretting over their tapas in anticipation of a chance encounter next year. They played alright though. And Hoilett looks a decent player. West Brom are most admirable, but need to add some beef to their diet of finesse and defensive calamity.

Full time

1750: Once again Chris Brunt punts a free-kick into the wall as WBA heads drop. Blackburn are heading up to seventh.

1748: Jermaine Jones gets the local sponsor's man of the match award after Roberts hacks a comical attempt to make it three over the bar before Samba heads just wide. Jones was tidy-stroke-effective while Baggies winger Thomas has caught the eye too.

1744: Newish manager Steve Kean looking a bit Warren Beatty with his simple suit and long mac combo. Will be charming the Blackburn fans with results like this, though we're just debating whether - with West Brom scoring an own goal and being denied a clear penalty - Rovers have been a bit lucky? They've certainly had the breaks at Ewood. Seconds left now...

RuiCostaJnr on 606: "I was deputising in goal for a game for my current team. We lost 5-1 and three of them were own goals by my defenders. With the first one, I spilled a cross and my full-back rifled it full-pelt the wrong way. It hit me in the face on its way in."

1738: Baggies on the ropes now as Hoilett once again cuts inside to lash towards goal. Romania's Tamas, who will be hoping for a dose of amnesia after this, manages to deflect it behind for a corner. Home crowd growing playful. Three points beckon.

1735: Grant Hanley has just replaced the legendary Michel Salgado. In the finest Sunday traditional, he has been absolutely roasted by Jerome Thomas today. Gravy too, the works. Still one of the best attacking defenders of the past 15 years though.

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Kevin W in West Yorkshire: "I once scored 4 goals in a 2-2 draw. And was one of the scorers in a game where we lost 3-1, but my team scored all the goals!"

1731: Some housekeeping folks: Jason Roberts's appearance makes Grenada the 21st nationality involved in this match today. And that equals the record when Blackburn faced Chelsea in October 2009. Could be broken yet; stay tuned.

1729: Jermaine Jones illegally unbalances Odemwingie and Mark Clattenburg puts the whistle to his mouth. No hesitation. But he only gives a free-kick when, to these eyes and plenty others near me, the foul occurs inside the box. Chris Brunt hits the wall with a lame free-kick on the edge. Hugely anti-climatic for the luckless Baggies. Not over though.

1726: How To Keep Goal, by Paul Robinson. Another superb save from Jerome Thomas. Hang on now. Do we have a Baggies penalty? Surely. No! Remarkable.

1723: Spaces opening up for West Brom you know...

1718: Full-blooded challenge from Jara on Hoilett as WBA dig in. Felt that. But Blackburn are in control. Some changes from Steve Kean. Jason Roberts comes on for Kalinic while Nzonzi replaces David Dunn.

1716: Grumpy Mulumbu troops off to be replaced by Tchoyi. Looks like West Brom are switching from 4-5-1 to 4-4-2. But Salgado has a volley, which is too straight, palmed away by Myhill. Nearly game over! Roque Santa Cruz fails to shoot after a brilliant through-ball from Dunn. Passing to Kalinic was the wrong option.

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Nick from Liverpool via text on 81111: "Re: 1657 - I once scored a hat-trick of own goals on my debut for my new team, the third was volleyed into my own net, top corner, from six yards..."

1712: Lordy - that's a top-class save from Paul Robinson. Jerome Thomas puts the afterburners on and, cutting inside, cracks a ripping low shot towards the far corner. But Robinson tips it round the post with his fingernails. Excellent football from both players.

1710: West Brom are shell-shocked. Mulumbu wastes a good chance to cross. They'll have loved that Hoilett goal in the bars of Darwen, Singapore, Toronto, Sydney, etc.

Blackburn goal: Wow. Quality chested pass from Kalinic into the path of Hoilett, who shimmies past sorry Tamas before blasting a shot past the scorched fingertips of Myhill into the roof of the goal.


1703: Second half is under way folks...

1702: That's now 21 matches without keeping a clean sheet in the league for the Baggies. And they have the worst defensive record in the top flight with 42 goals conceded. Much work to be done.

1659: Real freak of an own goal that from Tamas. Never looked like a defensive clearance gone wrong. It was a thing of beauty. As a late substitute, I once creamed a superb left-foot volley right in the top corner to clinch a 4-3 win with the last of the game. For the other team. True story. C'mon. Care to share your own goal shockers?

rob_gb on Twitter: " #bbcfootball Thomas has started to show why he was at Arsenal, perhaps he has shaken off the weight of expectation that was on is shoulders."

Topanalyzer on 606: "Chris, Thomas has been fairly good this year but has been poor value for money over the seasons he has been around. I also saw him last week v Blackpool and was acting "charlie big time" by keeping the ball with little annoying tricks when he conceded a foul. For me, he'll have the Porsches but never be rated highly."

Half-time snapshot from BBC Sport's Alistair Magowan [for those of you who may have joined us late]: "Blackburn go into the break with a lead they just about deserve, with new signings Jermaine Jones and Roque Santa Cruz looking good value so far."

Half time

1645: And Rovers nearly nick an instant second as Santa Cruz lets a smart Hoilett pass run across his body to test Myhill with a snappy left-foot shot from close range. West Brom have passed well, but...

Blackburn goal: Absolute peach of a header from Tamas, leaping high to nod into the top corner from David Dunn's dangerous cross. But Tamas plays for West Brom and put the ball in his own net. Nightmare for the tall defender who duly looks haunted.


1638: Dreamy long diagonal pass is taken down well by Jerome Thomas but, after skipping past slipping 35-year-old former Real Madrid full-back Salgado, his inventive shot is deflected just wide by Samba with Robinson at full stretch just in case. Fine play.

1635: Six inches to the right and Blackburn captain Chris Samba would have opened the scoring there. Another low shot skims just wide with Myhill a spectator after a deft lay-off from less-rusty Santa Cruz.

1633: Sharp stuff from Robinson in front of the other sticks as, on this occasion, he stalks forward to pick out a fine Chris Brunt delivery. End-to-end now. Santa Cruz a bit rusty trying to cross.

Champagne moment
1629: Two top stops from Boaz Myhill as, first, Martin Olsson cracks a low shot through the crowd, which he tips away to safety. For about four seconds! Giant Chris Samba then slams in another skimming drive but the Baggies keeper flings an athletic arm at it and the danger passes. That's more like it.

1628: No. Determined graft from young Canadian attacker David Hoilett but he cannot cut a cross back for any team-mates. The hosts whipped some dangerous ball over now though. Pressure building somewhat.

1625: "Arrrrgggghhhh," groans the crowd. Bang in the wall's epicentre. Not a scrap of a real chance so far. Hang on.

1623: Paul Scharner hacks David Dunn down outside the box. Gamst Pedersen likes the look of this...

BBC Radio 5 live
1620: It's 20 matches without a clean sheet for West Brom - but they look fairly comfortable so far. Rovers centre back Gael Givet looks like a professional climber. Apparently Michel Salgado's son plays in the same school team as Robbie Savage's son, the fiery Welshman tells us on BBC Radio 5 live. "His little boy is a fantastic player," he claims. "And he's only four." Bit scrappy now.

1614: Bizarre. Gross misjudgement from Paul Robinson sees him come to collect a Jerome Thomas cross only for Paul Scharner to steal the ball from his toes to set up Thomas, who had raced into the box. He tries to nutmeg Robinson, but the former England goalkeeper gets the back of his thigh to it to clear from danger. Close call. Thomas has caught my eye this season. Agree?

1610: Calling all stat fans: Rovers have won five of their 11 home games this season in the league. Pretty solid. Must also inform you all that returning Roque Santa Cruz said only today that he wants to finish his career at Ewood Park. Blackburn probing with some Gamst Pedersen corners. Well contested this.

1607: Lovely flick. But James Morrison's through-ball is wasted by West Brom's top scorer Odemwingie. Frenetic pace with referee Mark Clattenburg's fitness being tested to the full.

1605: Kalinic, who scored two goals when Blackburn won at The Hawthorns in December, nearly wriggles free for the hosts. Nearly. Settling now. Floodlights on already.

1603: Sloppy play from Blackburn lets Peter Odemwingie break free but his snapshot from outside the box is saved well by Paul Robinson. Quick start. All West Brom.

1600: Good crowd gathered in deepest Lancashire, Sunday lunch digesting. What more could you want. West Brom kick off.

1557: Real sense of anticipation at Ewood Park, and on the message boards from you guys, over watching Rocky II today - aka the second coming of Roque Santa Cruz at Ewood Park. Tough one, as he's not played much first-team football recently. Lack of match action seemed to hamper players like Joe Cole when he moved to Liverpool. Possibly it's different for boxers, sorry, strikers...

Text in your views on 81111 (UK) or +44 7786200666 (worldwide)
Luke on the text: "Not a classic on paper - but it's all I've got to keep me sane on a lonely day in the office. C'mon the Baggies."

nickroversfc on Twitter: " #bbcfootball I think today is when Roque Santa Cruz shows why Man City originally paid £17mill for him... come on Rovers!"

1546: Five years at boyhood heroes Celtic as a player without ever making the first team before working in a eclectic range of often lower league coaching jobs, Blackburn manager Steve Kean really has emerged from the shadows. Do you think he has what it takes to take Rovers into the Champions League? Bit of a funny one, eh. West Brom starting XI is made up of 11 different nationalities by the way.

BBC Sport's Alistair Magowan reports: "Blackburn hand starts to new signings striker Roque Santa Cruz and midfielder Jermaine Jones while captain Ryan Nelsen misses out with a knee injury. Jonas Olsson returns to the West Brom team after a three-month injury absence. He replaces Paul Scharner in defence with the Austrian moving into midfield in place of the injured Graham Dorrans."

Blackburn: Robinson, Salgado, Samba, Givet, Olsson, Dunn, Jermaine Jones, Pedersen, Hoilett, Kalinic, Santa Cruz.
Subs: Bunn, El-Hadji Diouf, Nzonzi, Mwaruwari, Roberts, Hanley, Mame Diouf.
West Brom: Myhill, Jara, Tamas, Olsson, Cech, Brunt, Mulumbu, Thomas, Scharner, Morrison, Odemwingie.
Subs: Carson, Tchoyi, Pablo, Bednar, Shorey, Zuiverloon, Cox.
Referee: Mark Clattenburg (Tyne & Wear)

1534: So can they turn the tide, can the West Midlanders end a relegation-worrying run of five straight away defeats as they screech up in Lancashire to face new-era Blackburn Rovers at Ewood Park? This ain't just a fickle sales pitch for the game. Hello folks. I'd like to know all your thoughts [football-related]. Do get in touch via 606, text me via 81111 (UK) or, if you want to get in touch via Twitter, you can do so via the hashtag #BBCFootball. Let's get the teams.

1530: If Roberto Di Matteo's ever-attractive West Brom side were a Hollywood road movie, we'd be getting towards the hard luck stories galore stage now with the emotive violins really kicking in...

Print Sponsor

Barclays Premier League results

23 Jan 2011 23:59 UK

Barclays Premier League table snapshot

As it stood on 23 Jan 2011 23:59 UK

Position Team P GD PTS
1 Man Utd 22 29 48
2 Arsenal 23 26 46
3 Man City 24 17 45
4 Chelsea 22 19 38
5 Tottenham 23 6 38
6 Sunderland 24 4 37
7 Blackburn 24 -6 31
8 Newcastle 23 3 30
9 Bolton 23 3 30
10 Stoke 23 0 30
11 Liverpool 23 -1 29
12 Blackpool 22 -6 28
13 Everton 23 -2 27
14 Fulham 23 0 26
15 West Brom 23 -14 25
16 Aston Villa 23 -14 25
17 Birmingham 22 -10 23
18 Wigan 23 -18 22
19 Wolves 23 -17 21
20 West Ham 24 -19 21

see also
Sunday's football photos
23 Jan 11 |  Football
Blackburn 2-0 West Brom
23 Jan 11 |  Premier League

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