Fletcher fires in to give Wolves the lead against the Baggies at Molineux
By Mandeep Sanghera
Wolves beat West Brom to move a point above the Premier League relegation zone and leapfrog Blackpool and Wigan.
Steven Fletcher put the hosts ahead when he slammed home after Adlene Guedioura had chested down a corner.
From another corner Fletcher headed across for Guediora to turn in a shot.
Fletcher slotted in the third after a mistake by Abdoulaye Meite and, despite Peter Odemwingie's penalty for West Brom and Jerome Thomas hitting the bar, the home side prevailed.
Odemwingie's goal from a spot-kick after 55 minutes following a Guedioura foul on Thomas reinvigorated the Baggies and gave Wolves an attack of nerves that threatened to undermine their good work.
With three vital points within their grasp, Mick McCarthy's Wolves showed signs of buckling as goalkeeper Wayne Hennessey had to brilliantly save from Simon Cox, Thomas struck the crossbar and Somen Tchoyi sent a free header just high.
The anxiety of the home fans was finally eased by a welcome final whistle and Wolves now have two games - away at Sunderland on Saturday and at home to Blackburn on 22 May - in which to secure Premier League survival.
McCarthy focused on final two games
McCarthy's side have moved to 37 points and overtook Wigan and Blackpool, who both have 36 after drawing at Tottenham and Aston Villa respectively on Saturday, in moving out of the bottom three.
West Brom had already ensured their top-flight status going into the derby against their arch-rivals and it showed in a lacklustre first-half performance, which cost them dearly.
For Wolves, the Black Country derby proved the ideal tonic to lift them out of a recent stupor which had yielded only two points from a possible 15.
The serious look on the faces of the home players opposed to the smiles of their Baggies counterparts told the story of the situation as the teams came out on to the pitch.
McCarthy and his side were burdened by relegation worries, while the visitors looked relaxed and relieved having picked up 17 points from their last 30 to make sure of their top flight status.
The Wolves manager also sprung a surprise by dropping Matt Jarvis after saying earlier in the week that the winger had become more of a marked man since earning his first England cap in March.
Stephen Hunt replaced Jarvis and McCarthy's gamble had the desired affect as his side were rewarded for a determined opening with the lead.
After Baggies keeper Scott Carson had tipped a Jamie O'Hara free-kick round the post, Hunt swung in a corner which Guedioura chested down for an unmarked Fletcher to fire in from close range.
The goal took West Brom's record for games without a clean sheet to 34 and it soon got worse for the visitors as the three same Wolves players again combined to take advantage of some poor marking to double their side's advantage.
Hunt sent a corner to the far post and Fletcher repaid the earlier favour to knock the ball across goal for Guedioura to guide in from point-blank range as the static Baggies defence stood and watched.
Hodgson wants highest finish possible
Fletcher nodded an O'Hara corner narrowly wide as West Brom continued to deal with set pieces and looked like a team that had eased their foot off the pedal after securing top-flight safety.
This was epitomised when centre-back Meite let a Kevin Foley pass slip away from him and Fletcher pounced to guide a shot past Carson early into the second half.
Odemwingie became the first Baggies player in 40 years since Tony Brown to score in five successive top flight matches with a penalty which was the catalyst for the visitors to raise their game.
West Brom have won more points from losing positions than any other team in the top flight but this time, although they went close to engineering another comeback through Thomas, Cox and Tchyoi, their efforts came too late.
They lost for only the second time in manager Roy Hodgson's 10 games in charge, while Wolves celebrated adding West Brom's scalp to that of Manchester United, Liverpool and Chelsea this season.
89:39 Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Ishmael Miller by Kevin Foley. Peter Odemwingie shoots direct from the free kick.
87:13 Sylvan Ebanks-Blake takes a shot. Save by Scott Carson.
84:01 Peter Odemwingie fouled by Stephen Hunt, the ref awards a free kick. Peter Odemwingie takes the free kick.
83:16 Substitution Sylvan Ebanks-Blake joins the action as a substitute, replacing Steven Fletcher.
83:07 Stephen Ward produces a left-footed shot from deep inside the penalty box which goes wide of the right-hand upright.
82:17 Substitution (West Brom) makes a substitution, with Carlos Alberto Vela coming on for Jerome Thomas.
81:23 Nicky Shorey takes the free kick.
81:23 Booking Karl Henry is shown a yellow card.
81:12 Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Ishmael Miller by Karl Henry.
79:25 Substitution Jamie O'Hara leaves the field to be replaced by Richard Stearman.
78:24 Nicky Shorey restarts play with the free kick.
78:24 Booking Jody Craddock is booked.
78:10 Unfair challenge on Ishmael Miller by Jody Craddock results in a free kick.
77:48 The assistant referee signals for offside against Steven Fletcher. Nicky Shorey takes the indirect free kick.
77:13 Substitution Ishmael Miller replaces Simon Cox.
76:13 Jamie O'Hara takes a shot. Comfortable save by Scott Carson.
75:11 Shot on goal by Marc-Antoine Fortune from inside the box goes harmlessly over the target.
73:51 Substitution Matthew Jarvis is brought on as a substitute for Adlene Guedioura.
73:31 A cross is delivered by Kevin Foley, Steven Fletcher takes a shot. Save made by Scott Carson.
72:59 Handball decision goes against Abdoulaye Meite. Jamie O'Hara restarts play with the free kick.
69:16 Header from deep inside the penalty area by Somen Tchoyi goes harmlessly over the crossbar.
68:44 Corner taken left-footed by Nicky Shorey to the near post, clearance by Karl Henry.
67:11 Substitution Marc-Antoine Fortune on for Gonzalo Jara.
63:44 Jerome Thomas takes a shot.
59:54 Simon Cox takes a shot. Save by Wayne Hennessey.
58:44 Kevin Foley takes the direct free kick.
58:44 Booking Booking for Youssouf Mulumbu for dissent.
58:36 Free kick awarded for a foul by Youssouf Mulumbu on Jamie O'Hara.
55:42 Outswinging corner taken left-footed by Stephen Hunt from the left by-line.
54:16 Assist by Jerome Thomas.
54:16 GOAL - Peter Odemwingie:Wolverhampton 3 - 1 West Brom Peter Odemwingie scores a placed penalty. Wolverhampton 3-1 West Brom.
53:45 Booking Adlene Guedioura goes into the referee's book.
53:23 Jerome Thomas fouled by Adlene Guedioura, the ref awards a Penalty.
52:07 Corner taken by James Morrison from the left by-line to the near post, Jamie O'Hara manages to make a clearance.
51:51 James Morrison takes a shot. Jody Craddock gets a block in.
51:23 Stephen Hunt gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Gonzalo Jara. Direct free kick taken by Gonzalo Jara.
50:45 Inswinging corner taken from the right by-line by Jamie O'Hara, Scott Carson makes a save.
50:31 Adlene Guedioura takes a shot. Blocked by Jonas Olsson.
50:05 Jerome Thomas takes a shot. Wayne Hennessey makes a save.
46:29 The assist for the goal came from Kevin Foley.
46:29 GOAL - Steven Fletcher:Wolverhampton 3 - 0 West Brom Goal scored by Steven Fletcher from just outside the box to the bottom left corner of the goal. Wolverhampton 3-0 West Brom.
45:01 The second half kicks off.
45:00+1:08 The referee calls an end to the first half.
45:00+0:04 Effort from the edge of the penalty area by Peter Odemwingie goes wide of the left-hand post.
42:19 Jerome Thomas produces a right-footed shot from just outside the area that goes harmlessly over the bar.
39:47 Somen Tchoyi takes a shot. Blocked by George Elokobi.
37:57 Foul by Peter Odemwingie on Michael Mancienne, free kick awarded. Wayne Hennessey takes the direct free kick.
36:54 Inswinging corner taken left-footed by Jamie O'Hara from the right by-line, Steven Fletcher has a headed effort at goal from
close in which goes wide right of the goal.
34:52 Stephen Hunt takes the outswinging corner, Jonas Olsson makes a clearance.
34:24 Peter Odemwingie is caught offside. Wayne Hennessey takes the free kick.
33:23 Peter Odemwingie takes a shot. George Elokobi gets a block in.
32:09 Somen Tchoyi challenges Jamie O'Hara unfairly and gives away a free kick. Jamie O'Hara delivers the ball, Header from deep
inside the area by George Elokobi goes over the bar.
30:33 Karl Henry gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Peter Odemwingie. Direct effort from the free kick comes in from
30:01 The offside flag is raised against Stephen Ward. Free kick taken by Abdoulaye Meite.
27:36 The assist for the goal came from Steven Fletcher.
27:36 GOAL - Adlene Guedioura:Wolverhampton 2 - 0 West Brom Adlene Guedioura scores a goal from inside the six-yard box low into the middle of the goal. Wolverhampton 2-0 West Brom.
27:10 Outswinging corner taken from the left by-line by Stephen Hunt.
26:16 The referee blows for offside. Scott Carson takes the free kick.
23:10 Unfair challenge on Stephen Hunt by James Morrison results in a free kick. Free kick crossed left-footed by Jamie O'Hara.
22:41 Corner taken by Stephen Hunt, save by Scott Carson.
21:17 Karl Henry concedes a free kick for a foul on Simon Cox. Direct free kick taken by Abdoulaye Meite.
19:17 Foul by Adlene Guedioura on Jerome Thomas, free kick awarded. James Morrison crosses the ball in from the free kick.
18:21 The offside flag is raised against Stephen Ward. Indirect free kick taken by Scott Carson.
16:18 Foul by Gonzalo Jara on Stephen Hunt, free kick awarded. Adlene Guedioura shoots direct from the free kick.
14:49 Assist on the goal came from Adlene Guedioura.
14:49 GOAL - Steven Fletcher:Wolverhampton 1 - 0 West Brom Steven Fletcher finds the back of the net with a goal from inside the six-yard box to the bottom right corner of the goal.
Wolverhampton 1-0 West Brom.
14:36 Outswinging corner taken left-footed by Stephen Hunt from the left by-line.
13:25 Jonas Olsson gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Stephen Ward. Strike comes in from Jamie O'Hara from the free
kick, save made by Scott Carson.
10:42 Adlene Guedioura fouled by Nicky Shorey, the ref awards a free kick. Free kick crossed left-footed by Jamie O'Hara from right
channel, James Morrison makes a clearance.
8:03 Outswinging corner taken by James Morrison from the right by-line played to the near post, Karl Henry makes a clearance.
6:47 Somen Tchoyi produces a right-footed shot from outside the penalty box and misses right.
6:23 Corner taken by Jamie O'Hara.
5:58 Jamie O'Hara takes a shot. Youssouf Mulumbu gets a block in.
4:55 Stephen Ward takes a shot. Blocked by Abdoulaye Meite.
4:26 Jerome Thomas takes a shot. Wayne Hennessey makes a comfortable save.
4:02 A cross is delivered by George Elokobi, clearance by Jonas Olsson.
2:00 Stephen Ward is flagged offside by the assistant referee. Indirect free kick taken by Scott Carson.
0:40 Peter Odemwingie is caught offside. Free kick taken by Wayne Hennessey.
0:00 The referee gets the match started.
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