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Monday, 30 September, 2002, 20:51 GMT 21:51 UK
Blackburn see off Baggies
Andy Cole holds off the challenge of Sean Gregan
Andy Cole was impressive as a substitute for Blackburn
West Brom 0-2 Blackburn

Blackburn moved into the top half of the table with a convincing win over a spirited but limited West Brom side at The Hawthorns.

The visitors deserved victory because of their greater quality and the way they dominated possession.

But they gained their crucial first goal courtesy of a controversial refereeing decision.

Damien Duff went down a little too easily under a challenge by Ronnie Wallwork and appeared to fall outside the area in any case, but Mike Halsey still awarded a penalty.

  Key incidents
72 mins: Dwight Yorke puts Blackburn ahead from the spot.
76 mins: Damien Duff puts the visitors two up.
85 mins: Dwight Yorke is forced off with a hamstring injury.
Dwight Yorke, on as a half-time substitute for Egil Ostenstad, stepped up to fire past Russell Hoult from the spot.

The Baggies, so accomplished when holding on to a lead but limited when chasing one, were soon two down.

The impressive Andy Cole drove through the middle and slotted a pass to Duff, who rounded Hoult before rolling the ball into an unguarded net.

The only bad note for Blackburn was an injury to Yorke, who was forced off near the end because of the recurrence of his hamstring injury.

Duff was playing his first game for three weeks after a thigh injury and tormented the Baggies throughout the game.

Blackburn boss Graeme Souness chose to start with a packed midfield, with Egil Ostenstad again playing as a lone striker.

But the Norwegian soon had a partner in attack, with Cole coming on in place of the injured Gary Flitcroft early on.

Blackburn were enjoying the greater share of possession and looked impressive on the ball, but were struggling to create chances against their resolute hosts.

Duff shot wide with a volley from the edge of the area before Tugay went close with an outrageous 40-yard shot but otherwise the West Brom back three of Darren Moore, Phil Gilchrist and Lars Sigurdsson looked comfortable.

Blackburn finally gained a breakthrough after 72 minutes when Yorke scored with an emphatic penalty after Duff had gone down under an apparently innocuous challenge on the edge of the area.

The visitors were soon two up. Cole wriggled free of his marker in centre-field and drove forward before sending Duff free with a delightful pass.

The Republic of Ireland international rounded Hoult and slotted home.


West Brom: Hoult, Sigurdsson, Moore, Gilchrist, Balis, Johnson, Gregan, Koumas, Clement, Roberts, Taylor. Subs: Murphy, Wallwork, Dobie, Marshall, James Chambers.

Blackburn: Friedel, Taylor, Berg, Johansson, Neill, Thompson, Flitcroft, Tugay, Dunn, Duff, Ostenstad. Subs: Kelly, Yorke, Cole, Gillespie, Todd.

Referee: M Halsey (Lancashire).

 WATCH/LISTEN
 ON THIS STORY
BBC Five Live's Ian Brown
"A scruffy, attritional match"
West Brom boss Gary Megson
"Our worst performance of the season"
Blackburn defender Henning Berg
"We controlled the game"
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30 Sep 02 | Eng Prem
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