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West Brom's Roberto Di Matteo bemused by penalty call

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Di Matteo bemused that referee did not award West Brom a penalty

West Brom manager Roberto di Matteo said he was bemused by the referee's decision not to award his side a penalty as they lost 2-0 to Blackburn.

Baggies striker Peter Odemwingie was fouled just inside the box by Rovers debutant Jermaine Jones but Mark Clattenburg awarded a free-kick.

"Everybody could see it and the referee was in a good position to be honest," Di Matteo told BBC Sport.

"So I don't know why he gave a free-kick rather than a penalty."

An own goal by West Brom defender Gabriel Tamas and a David Hoilett strike either side of half-time made it the visitors' sixth defeat in their last seven Premier League games and they now sit only three points above the relegation zone in 15th place.

Even though the Baggies showed positive signs at the start of the game, when Odemwingie went close to scoring and Jerome Thomas provided a constant threat down their left side, Di Matteo was unhappy with the team's performance after the break.

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"I think we started brightly and up until the own goal we were defensively very good but I was disappointed with the second half," he said. "We weren't good enough.

"We came out and conceded the second goal straight away and that leaves us with a big mountain to climb to get back in the game even though we should have had a penalty that would have given us a lifeline.

"It was a bizarre own goal and that happens in football unfortunately. Our defender mistimed his jump and put it in our net but I was very disappointed with the way we conceded the second goal."

Blackburn manager Steve Kean acknowledged that his side rode their luck at times, particularly with the penalty appeal.

Kean delighted by Blackburn's team spirit

But he said he was pleased with the performances of goalkeeper Paul Robinson, Jones and Roque Santa Cruz, who was given his first start after returning to the club from Manchester City earlier this month.

As a result of the victory, Rovers have moved up to seventh in the league table.

"I thought we were positive in everything that we have done. I think the shape through the middle of the pitch was good but full credit to the back four and Paul Robinson. They were outstanding," stated Kean, who signed a new contract earlier this month that is set to keep him at Ewood Park until 2013.

"Roque's quality has never been in doubt but we hope we can get him up to full speed as quick as we can. When the ball is played into him it sticks and he plays people into the game and his all-round ability is fantastic.

"I'm happy with our position in the table and I'm happy with the togetherness of the group. We're playing well, we're putting our bodies on the line for each other and long may that continue."



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



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