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Last Updated: Wednesday, 16 May 2007, 20:42 GMT 21:42 UK
West Brom 1-0 Wolves
West Brom win 4-2 on aggregate

By Phil McNulty
Chief football writer

Kevin Phillips celebrates heading West Bromwich Albion in front
Kevin Phillips celebrates heading West Bromwich Albion in front
West Bromwich Albion will face Derby in the Championship play-off final at Wembley after Kevin Phillips headed the winner against Wolves at The Hawthorns.

Phillips, who scored twice in Albion's first-leg win, converted Robert Koren's cross after 64 minutes.

Albion deserved their victory, although they almost let Wolves back in when defender Sam Sodje cleared his own back-pass off the line.

Koren and Diomansy Kamara were then denied as Albion closed in on victory.

The end-to-end action from the first leg continued in a vibrant opening 20 minutes, with both sides aiming to strike a crucial early blow.


Wolves created an opening in the ninth minute when Andy Keogh was found by Seyi George Olofinjana's pass, but he shot over the top.

The gifted Jason Koumas was a major threat down the left flank, and Zoltan Gera was only inches away from connecting with his cross.

And Koumas was the architect again after 21 minutes with another brilliant cross that Phillips glanced just wide.

Koumas was the game's most influential player, and he shot over the bar from 25 yards after working a good opening four minutes after the interval.

Albion were troubling Wolves down the flanks, but another fine delivery from Koren flew across the six-yard box without anyone able to apply the final touch.

Wolves were struggling to pose the sort of threat that would get them the goal they required, and it was Albion's Kamara who brought a good save from keeper Wayne Hennessey with a curling drive just after the hour.

And Albion got the lead they deserved after 64 minutes, with Phillips again the Wolves tormentor.

He stole in on Koren's left-wing cross at the far post to head home and send The Hawthorns wild.

But Albion almost gifted Wolves an equaliser seconds later when Sodje turned a back-pass wide of Dean Kiely, but the defender recovered to clear off the line.

The game had burst into life, with Hennessey then producing a point-blank block from Koren.

Wolves had another chance 11 minutes from time, but Jay Bothroyd skied his shot from close range.

And as play switched to the other end, Hennessey raced out to deny Kamara as he raced in on an angle.

  • West Bromwich Albion boss Tony Mowbray:
    "The task when we came here was to get in the Premier League and we still have a huge hurdle to overcome.

    "The win means nothing to me, I have no feeling of joy in my stomach. We have to try and get the job done against a good Derby County side.

    "It's the best day of your life if you can win at Wembley. That's the opportunity we have got and we have to prepare and we will be ready."

  • Wolves manager Mick McCarthy:
    "It is disappointing but we have not really performed as well as we can. Maybe we had our opportunity at Molineux when we were by far the better side.

    "We had a lead in that game and lost, so maybe that was our chance.

    "We weren't expected to be here, so the players should have pride in what they have done for me, the club and themselves.

    "They have done wonders, and when the disappointment dies down they can look back on a great season."

    West Brom: Kiely, McShane, Perry, Sodje, Robinson, Koren, Greening, Gera, Koumas, Kamara (MacDonald 83), Phillips (Ellington 79).
    Subs Not Used: Daniels, Clement, Carter.

    Booked: Kamara.

    Goals: Phillips 65.

    Wolverhampton: Hennessey, Neill Collins, Breen, Craddock, McNamara (Mulgrew 76), Kightly (Ward 84), Olofinjana, Potter, McIndoe (Gleeson 59), Bothroyd, Keogh.
    Subs Not Used: Oakes, Little.

    Booked: Potter.

    Att: 27,415

    Ref: M Halsey (Lancashire).

    Championship play-off photos
    16 May 07 |  Football
    Derby secure play-off final berth
    15 May 07 |  Championship
    Wolves 2-3 West Brom
    13 May 07 |  Championship


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