Three things we learnt from West Brom's goalless draw with Middlesbrough
This match was always an odd one to pick for television coverage and it didn’t come close to the ‘Super Sunday’ billing. Both sides are robust, well organised and tough to beat. Therefore an end result of 0-0 wasn’t a surprise and somewhat inevitable. It was a match between two sides that will be fighting in the bottom half of the season and the lack of quality in attack reflected this. Here are three things that we learned from the early kick off at the Hawthorns:
Tony Pulis is continuing to anger the West Brom supporters
At the time of his appointment, it looked to be a perfect fit for both club and manager. Tony Pulis is excellent at keeping sides in the top flight, while West Brom had limited resources and wanted to consolidate themselves as a Premier League side. On Saturday, the side left the pitch to widespread boos as the West Brom supporters are beginning to grow tired of the functional style of play that is being served up on a weekly basis. They are strong defensively, but they don’t look threatening from open play and have to rely on set pieces to score goals.
The problem that supporters have with Pulis was obvious after the teams were announced. He opted to play just one striker against a promoted side at home, despite having several options available to him. Pulis is a manager who always puts safety first and doesn’t like to take risks. This is frustrating to West Brom supporters as other sides have come up from the Championship and surpassed them with ease. Leicester City, Watford and Southampton are all examples of this. His negative management continues to alienate the West Brom fans and the appeal of spending money on following their club is reducing. The tension at the club will only increase with every performance like this.
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